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Writing the Perfect Press Release March 14, by Alexander Parsonage Leave a Comment A press release is the standard and most commonly used form of written communication when dealing with the media. A release follows a structured format which allows you to convey the necessary details about your news story in a style which is easily recognised by journalists.
The headline should be short and informative.
When a journalist is trawling through the numerous press releases they receive, a catchy headline will grab their attention. This is the crux of all news. Any good news story provides answers to each of these questions. The first paragraph must be short and summarise the whole story.
You can provide further details later on. A journalist will glance at this one paragraph and make a decision on this as to whether they will read on making it the most important part of your release. The next two to three paragraphs should repeat the story, explaining in more detail.
Try to keep press releases to one side of A4 paper. Include a short lively quote. End your release with any background information you think is relevant, clearly labeled as Note to editors. Keep sentences and paragraphs short and simple. Good photos accompanying a press release can make all the difference to the impact of the story Make sure that your release is being sent to the right person, at the right address, at the right time.
Give the publication a call to find out who it would be best to send it to and their preferred format — most publications prefer to receive press releases in the body of an email, rather than as an attachment. If a journalist turns your story down or an article is dropped at the last minute, do not be disheartened or take it personally.
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