About Press Releases
Press Releases may be used both on-line and off-line. If you are totally dedicated to writing and submitting your own press releases, it can be done. You will need to learn about writing your release and do some research on sites, newspapers, magazines, radio stations or TV news stations that you’d like to submit to.
If you are not dedicated to the research involved, it makes more sense to hire a firm devoted to the task than to try to write or submit a press release on your own. This is because it may take years to make the necessary contacts in the media. It is not a task than can be tackled in a week’s time. Prices range from $200-$2000. Go to URL Wire to view a comparison of four on-line agencies which submit press releases.
What is a press release:
Also known as a news release: it is an announcement about an event or a human interest story. It is not an advertisement. A news releases can serve to let the public know about changes within a company. These changes may involve, but not limited to, the hiring of new employees, the merger with another company, the launch of a new project or sales campaign, or new identity branding. Basically, anything that’s changing within your company, anything “new”.
Writing your press release:
1. Read some recent on-line press releases: News Bureau. Try to read the ones that seem similar to what you want to accomplish in your own press release. For example consider your objectives: are you announcing a new product, a new company or a web site.
2. What to include:
a. Include all contact information – including every way the media could get in contact with you if they wanted to know more – phone numbers, fax numbers, email address, URL for your website, and US Postal address.
b. Provide just enough info to make the media want to know more. It should be about 3-4 paragraphs in length.
c. Use quotes and reactions – add human feelings.
d. Try to be “first” or be “largest” at something – this attracts attention.
e. Your information should be newsworthy, not an advertisement.
f. Your information should be timely – it should either relate to other topics in the current news or be about an event that will take place in the near future. It shouldn’t be about something that happened months ago.
g. Explain your target market – who is going to be interested in your “news” and why.
h. If you can, solve a problem for the members of your niche market.
i. Use the five “W’s”: Answer – Who, What, When, Where and Why.
3. Read through all the links below.
Who to send it to:
1. You will need to research your niche market – specific newspapers, magazines, websites that will accept your “news”.
2. Find out the name of the journalist in charge of writing stories in relation to your target market.
3. Send your news release specifically to that journalist.
4. Most journalist are accepting newsrealses through email. However, realize that a journalist is very busy – they may get hundreds of newsreleases every day, follow the tips above and read through all these sites below.
5. Submit your press releases at least 4-6 weeks in advance of an upcoming event that you are promoting.
1. Study the journalistic style of the media that you are submitting to. Read some their publication – or listen to their broadcasts.
2. Seek to develop a longer term relationship with the journalist that you are submitting to.
3. Follow up your submission with an email – it is not recommended that you call.
4. If they accept your release – follow up with a thank you note.
Care and Feeding of the Press An excellent article written by a journalist that gets hundreds of press releases a day.
Learning the pet peeves of the press Top ten tips on writing and submitting your press release.
Automated Press Releases: A press release service.
PR Newswire: Services and press releases.
Gebbie Press: Another service.