When it comes to content material, typically old-fashioned might be a good factor (particularly, when it comes to old-school rap or Throwback Thursday on Instagram). However when it comes to your organization’s public relations strategy, being old-fashioned is not advantageous for your corporation or your model.
Ten years in the past, individuals nonetheless relied on morning papers for information. Right this moment, the overwhelming majority of your organization’s prospects and prospects scan headlines on Twitter or see what’s trending of their Fb feed.
Individuals now have management over the place, when, and the way they devour data. As a outcome, public relations is not about feeding into a conventional information cycle; it is about offering related content material when, the place, and the way your prospects, influencers, and prospects will devour it.
Sounds fairly hopeless, proper? Mistaken. Whereas relationship-building nonetheless helps you get into widespread publications, we now have the alternative to give up enjoying the ready sport and generate our personal buzz. By turning your PR strategy into an inbound one, you create alternatives that weren’t there earlier than and carve out a place in your firm, constructing significant mindshare along with your goal audiences within the course of.
One of the essential updates to make to your PR technique is to consider alternatives to join to the audiences you care about — together with, however not restricted to, reporters. And that begins with press releases. On this publish, we’ll focus on:
- What Is a Press Release?
- Types of Press Releases
- Sample Press Release Format
- How to Write a Press Release
- Press Release Examples
- Tips for Publishing Press Releases
What Is a Press Release / Information Release?
An everyday cadence of significant information will help a firm stand out and construct mindshare with journalists over time. That is the place the press launch (or information announcement) is available in.
A press launch is an official announcement (written or recorded) that a corporation points to the information media and past. Whether or not we name it a “press launch,” a “press assertion,” a “information launch,” or a “media launch,” we’re all the time speaking about the identical fundamental factor.
Whereas the heading ought to include motion verbs, the primary paragraph ought to reply the “who,” “what,” “why,” and “the place.” The press launch must also include comprehensible language and a quote.
Most press releases are succinct at simply a web page lengthy — two pages, tops. Finally, corporations need to present sufficient data in order that information shops have adequate materials for publishing their very own tales about regardless of the firm is asserting within the launch.
And whereas it might be tempting to craft a press launch that adorns your organization’s accomplishments or twists the info to make a story sound extra intriguing to the media, keep in mind: Press releases stay within the public area, which suggests your prospects and potential prospects can see them. So as an alternative of considering of a press launch solely as a ticket to incomes information protection, you must also consider it as a invaluable piece of selling content material.
Whereas there is not any cut-and-dried system for what a press launch ought to embody, listed here are a few forms of events to make it easier to carve out a focus in your press launch and decide what content material would make it easier to broadcast your information in one of the best ways:
New Product Launches
The product launch sort of press launch is effective to get the phrase out concerning the new options your group is providing to customers. This launch will emphasize the product’s specs, pricing, availability, and every other particulars that could be invaluable to customers.
Mergers and Acquisitions
Organizational change is noteworthy sufficient to warrant a press launch, particularly for informing present and future stakeholders concerning the development and trajectory of a firm. To announce an acquisition or merger, embody particulars about all organizations concerned, details about the merger or acquisition, and quotes from the management groups.
Comparable to a new product launch, product updates and expansions are additionally ripe for promotion. Clarify what the change is, why it was made, and the way it advantages the consumer.
Press releases are an essential element of occasion advertising and marketing to appeal to promotion from information shops and different media sources. You will need to embody what the occasion is about, who ought to think about attending, when and the place it will likely be held, pricing, and every other obligatory particulars.
Whether or not you opened up a new workplace, relocated, or are opening for the primary time, announce the main points with a grand opening press launch. Announce the date and site the grand opening can be held, who’s concerned, how the grand opening is being celebrated, and the explanation for the transfer (if relevant).
Comparable to mergers and acquisitions, a press launch asserting new partnerships is a mutually helpful advertising and marketing tactic. To successfully execute any such launch, be certain to write a abstract about every firm, why the partnership was created, who advantages, and any extra essential particulars for present and future stakeholders.
Rebranding is a tough factor for any enterprise to do, and it will possibly often end in confusion and awkwardness. A technique to make the transition smoother is by asserting the rebrand with a press launch, together with particulars on what’s altering, the explanation for making the change, dates the modifications go into impact, and quotes from the management workforce.
Executives usually function faces of the corporate, and a press launch capabilities to kick off this function. It might embody biographical data to set up their credibility together with a photograph and different pertinent particulars.
When it comes to enterprise excellence, it is okay to brag. Press releases about awards and accomplishments serve to cement your group as an authority in your house. Such a press launch consists of details about the corporate and why they got the award, details about the award itself, and particulars concerning the ceremony (if relevant).
Pattern Press Release Format
When formatting a press-release, you need to write it in a newsy, simple manner so a journalist who would possibly write about it will possibly think about it as an article on their information web site.
As famous above, you may need your format to embody conventional press-release objects like your contact data, the phrases “For rapid launch,” a word about your location, and a fast bio about your organization. Having particular spots for these parts will stop you from needing to point out it in your physique copy so you possibly can concentrate on discussing the information at hand.
You additionally would possibly need to embody “###” or one other signifier to present the journalist that the discharge has ended. Previously, this prevented busy journalists from ready or flipping the web page for extra data when there was no extra information. Nevertheless, this custom is still adopted and highly-respected today.
When it comes to formatting the physique copy and headline, click here or scroll down for writing ideas.
On this instance, Catbrella Inc., a fictitious advert company which simply gained its 10th Twitter follower after two years of paid social media efforts, publicizes its achievement in a press launch.
*Disclaimer: HubSpot is totally liable for the silliness of this fake announcement.
Rule 1: Make your headline irresistible.
You have obtained your announcement in thoughts, and now it is time to get it down in phrases to share along with your neighborhood, trade, and followers. Similar to writing the perfect blog post title, establishing your press launch for fulfillment begins along with your headline. You solely have one line to work with, which may appear scary, however think about diction rigorously to make your headline charming.
Use motion verbs, clear, comprehensible language, and maintain your headline easy and quick — fortune (and search engines like google and yahoo) reward the transient, so maintain your title to one line to clearly focus individuals’s consideration in your topline message.
Most significantly, make it fascinating: Take into account that reporters get dozens, if not a whole lot, of releases every day, so make investments the time to write a compelling headline. It is definitely worth the effort and time in your half.
Rule 2: Convey the information worth to the press.
For reporters, analysts, influencers, or followers to be inclined to share your announcement, you’ve got to inform them upfront why they need to care.
The primary paragraph of your launch ought to cowl the who, what, why, the place, and the way of your new launch, replace, or improvement. Reporters haven’t got a ton of time to sift by way of particulars and fluffy background data — they only want the info that’ll assist them inform your story to another person from a place of authority.
There should not be any new, essential data lined after this part that the reader may doubtlessly miss. A great way to guarantee that is through the use of the reverse pyramid formula when writing your press launch.
Rule 3: Supply a tempting quote.
As soon as you have set the scene, it is time to carry your particulars to life with a quote that reporters can use for context round your announcement and assist paint a image of how your information impacts the given trade, buyer base, and panorama.
Ideally, quotes can be from key stakeholders in your organization together with your government workforce, mission leads, or these immediately impacted by your announcement. Quoting key figures and authorities underlines the significance of your improvement. The chosen quote ought to form your narrative and emphasize the core of the announcement. Do not ask everybody in your workplace for a remark or really feel compelled to quote all 25 individuals included within the acquisition — decide one or two vital spokespeople and focus the quotes round their distinctive perspective.
Rule 4: Present invaluable background data on the topic.
On this final paragraph, needless to say the reader already has all the important particulars and knowledge they want to file a story or unfold the phrase.
It may be tempting to present superfluous info and tidbits about your organization or the event of your announcement — we typically assume a piece of writing is missing if it is not drawn-out and simply shy of being a novella. Nevertheless, a press launch wants to be useful and concise.
Supply particulars right here that strengthen your narrative, like artistic or noteworthy methods your organization developed the mission or announcement at hand. Or, when relevant, touch upon future implications of your announcement.
One other great way to add worth to your press launch is through the use of newsjacking. A strategy of relating your press launch to one thing presently occurring to make it extra invaluable to the journalist and reader.
Rule 5: Summarize the “who” and the “what” in a boilerplate.
Twitter is chock-full of reporters lamenting press releases or pitches that do not clearly clarify what the corporate does or what the announcement is definitely about, so as an alternative of being the butt of a joke, make your launch extremely straightforward to reference.
Describe what your organization does in clear, plain English, embody a hyperlink to your organization’s homepage early on, and make your boilerplate succinct and simple. In case you cite knowledge, embody a reference hyperlink for the information supply, and ensure each identify within the launch has an related title and firm as nicely.
To maintain your self trustworthy on this entrance, ask a pal or colleague to learn the discharge with out context and ask if they’ll simply and readily clarify why the announcement issues, what your organization does, and why the executives included are quoted. If the reply to any of these questions isn’t any, get again to the drafting board.
The important thing to protecting your PR technique new faculty is forgetting preconceived notions of what public relations is and as an alternative specializing in creating extremely outstanding content material. Conventional press releases can nonetheless be actually invaluable when executed nicely, so as an alternative of ditching releases as a tactic, give them a fashionable makeover to make them extra helpful in your advertising and marketing.
Take into consideration how you have used inbound methods to transform your marketing strategies to be extra customized, approachable, and construct relationships. Those self same rules apply to your PR technique: Create content material to craft your individual story and use tactful outreach to get reporters and analysts conversant in your model.
Press Release Examples
Many individuals assume press releases have to be chock filled with buzzwords and branded phrases. “Massive knowledge,” anybody? 5-syllable phrases you’ve got to lookup on Thesaurus.com? Quotes from each government on the planet that go on for pages? We have seen all of it. Sadly, so have reporters — and they’re not followers.
As an alternative of stuffing your subsequent launch with trade jargon, take a web page out of our guide (okay effective, e book), The Newsworthy Guide to Inbound Public Relations, and brainstorm some artistic approaches in your subsequent announcement. Are you able to embody new knowledge? A outstanding graphic or video? A shareable SlideShare? In that case, a artistic angle will help carry your content material and improve the chance of social sharing.
Now, to get you considering heading in the right direction, take a have a look at some artistic press launch examples beneath, the kind of information each is reporting on, and what makes the discharge distinctive:
Kind of press launch: Occasion
Škoda, a automobile producer based mostly within the Czech Republic, lately confirmed off its sponsored racing workforce in two huge locations: on the 2017 World Rally Championship, and in a glossy, image-based press launch reporting on the occasion.
The information launch, proven above, would not have any hassle aligning the appear and feel of the Škoda model with the press launch itself — which is a essential side of any firm’s press content material. The discharge opens with a massive characteristic picture of one in every of its autos in the identical vibrant inexperienced that covers the enterprise’s web site. The press launch additionally begins with three useful bullet factors summarizing the information for readers, and ends the discharge with a couple of captioned actions pictures to give reporters extra context across the occasion.
Kind of press launch: Acquisition
Sure, a video press launch! This information merchandise from ScribbleLive gave reporters almost the whole lot they’d want to republish this story, all in a thorough two-minute video concerning the firm’s newest acquisition.
ScribbleLive opens the video press launch above with the corporate’s emblem and a clear header stating the information. This allowed the corporate’s CEO to bounce proper into his commentary on the acquisition, giving reporters loads of quotable materials on the state of the trade and why this merger was so essential to them.
The press launch additionally segments the video the identical manner a written press launch would, breaking apart the CEO’s commentary by the query he is answering. This makes it straightforward for viewers to bounce by way of the video and discover the data they’re most occupied with listening to about.
And, being on YouTube, a press launch on this format permits reporters to embed the information content material immediately on their web site, making ScribbleLive’s information that a lot simpler to share.
Kind of press launch: Opening a new workplace
Once you open a new headquarters, it may be onerous to determine what to say. Individuals simply need to get a have a look at the brand new digs! Within the above press launch by Peapod, an internet grocery service, the corporate places images of its new workplace proper on the prime, instantly exhibiting readers what makes this information so vital for Peapod.
The discharge even singles out a quote by the Mayor of Chicago slightly below the headline, hinting to reporters who’re writing about Peapod’s new HQ that that is the comment Peapod is most occupied with sharing with readers.
Try the boilerplate textual content on the backside of the above press launch. “About [company]” textual content can too simply mix in with the precise information textual content, making the piece appear longer than it truly is. By isolating this copy in a darkish grey field, Peapod offers a smoother studying expertise and ensures the story itself would not get misplaced in an intimidatingly lengthy wall of textual content.
Kind of press launch: New product launches
Once you’re launching services or products, the data is commonly finest expressed in written kind. However when all you are doing is writing about your new providing’s worth and options, it may be tough for others to refer to and report on it later. We at HubSpot know the problem nicely.
The graphic above helped us to complement our personal product announcement — written by our improbable Communications Supervisor, Ellie Botelho — with particulars that wanted a visible support. Utilizing a mixture of colours and shapes, this graphic allowed us to reveal essential relationships between merchandise, in addition to their respective costs and once they’ll be obtainable. ( one in every of our merchandise? Take word! ^)
We have additionally crafted this complete, easy-to-follow press release template full with a promotional plan and concerns in your subsequent announcement. We use these identical tips when writing and formatting our releases right here at HubSpot, and created a fake, pattern launch to illustrate what content material goes the place and why.
Ideas for Publishing Press Releases
Writing a press launch is basically solely half the battle. When you’re completed with manufacturing, it’s going to be time to concentrate on distribution.
After all, we’re all conversant in the normal distribution levers we are able to pull, which embody publishing the press launch on our web site/weblog, in addition to sharing the press launch with our followers/subscribers through social media and electronic mail. However for making certain a press launch will get the utmost quantity of distribution attainable, listed here are some ideas you possibly can observe.
1. Attain out to particular journalists.
As an alternative of blasting a press launch out to each journalist yow will discover an electronic mail tackle for, concentrate on a few journalists who’ve expertise masking your trade (and firm, hopefully) and ship them customized messages. Join the dots. Present why what you wrote connects to what they write.
2. Do not be afraid to go offline.
Most journalists have mountains of emails (and press releases) to kind by way of. Strive sending your launch by way of snail mail or one other offline channel to differentiate your self.
3. Ship the discharge to prime journalists the day earlier than.
Give journalists a while to craft a story round your press launch by sending it to them — below embargo — the day earlier than it formally goes stay. (FYI “below embargo” simply means they don’t seem to be allowed to share the data within the press launch till the time you specify.)
4. To keep away from competitors, do not publish your launch on the hour.
In case you’re publishing your press launch on a distribution service like PR Newswire or Enterprise Wire, keep away from publishing it on the hour (e.g., 1 p.m., or Three p.m., or 5 p.m.). The explanation? Most corporations schedule their releases to exit on the hour, which suggests in case your launch goes out on the hour too, it is extra seemingly to get misplaced within the shuffle. As an alternative, attempt going with a extra distinct time (e.g., 1:12 p.m., or 3:18 p.m., or 5:22 p.m.).
5. Share your media protection.
If all goes in accordance to plan, and your press launch will get picked up by the media, your job nonetheless is not completed. To maintain the thrill going, you possibly can launch a “second wave” of distribution by sharing the precise tales that information shops write based mostly in your press launch.
Editor’s word: This publish was initially revealed in November 2019 and has been up to date for comprehensiveness.