A Press Release (PR), also known as a news release or a media release, is a business promotional tool that is used to announce the launch of a new product or service. Sometimes, it is also used to announce the merger or partnership between two companies. The release is mainly directed or aimed at grabbing the attention of the news media, for the sole purpose of announcing something that is claimed to have news value. Generally, a press release is subjective towards the objectives of the author and is usually designed to be sent to journalists, to enable them to develop articles on that matter. There is a definite format in which press release should be written. Once written, it is sent either alone by using fax, e-mail or snail mail or along with a full press kit. Sometimes, press releases are also sent accompanied by a pitch letter. As complicated as it sounds, the entire process is really very simple. All you need to do is conform to the basic set standards and expectations of the media people. Having failed to do so, your release will not even be read, let alone published by the journalists. To help you get an idea about the basics of how to write a press release, we have provided some useful tips below.
Tips On Writing A Press Release
- It is always preferable if the release is written in a company letterhead or at least with a print of the company’s logo at the top of the page. This will give a good impression about the reputation and standards of the company.
- Proceed by giving details about the name of the company, the location address, web address and contact number at the very top of the page.
- Printed in the center of the page in bold should be the words ‘PRESS RELEASE’. Each of these words should be spelled out in CAPS. This should be immediately followed by the press release contact person’s name, along with all the contact numbers printed clearly underneath.
- In case, the release is something very sudden and has an element of emergency attached to it, then the words ‘IMMEDIATE RELEASE’ should be typed in CAPS directly above the title on the left side of the margin.
- A major aspect of a press release is the Headline or the Title written in bold and centered. This should be an attention grabber and should immediately capture the interests of the journalists. The title should be catchy and short and impressive enough for them to read on.
- The next step is the body or the main content of the release. Three words that can be used to sum up this aspect of the release are useful, accurate and interesting. The author should write the release keeping these three principles in mind. They should start by giving the general information about the date and city for which the release is being made. Three paragraphs are generally used and should contain the basic information; who, what, when, where and why.
- The first paragraph of the BODY shouild give explanation in details about what the press release is all about.
- The second paragraph should deal with the following aspects: who cares; why should you care; when it will happen and where one can find it. One basic aspect that should be kept in mind while writing the second paragraph is that there should be an element of ‘human interest’ or a ‘personal touch’, as they act like driving fuel for the journalists to read on.
- The third, and the final, paragraph should give a conclusion or summation about the release, along with further information on your company, with the contact information of the company printed clearly.
- The entire content of the press release should be in basic clear font (Arial, Times New Roman and so on) and should be double spaced.
- In case the release exceeds more than one page, you should mention the page number in the upper right hand corner of the page.
- Finally, the release should be concluded with 3 # symbols centered just below the last line of the press release. This is used to indicate the end of the release.