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How to Write a Press Release That Gets Published How to Write a Press Release That Gets Published

About Publicity About Publicity

About Publicity can have far greater integrity,  impact, influence, and attention value than advertising –About Publicity can have far greater integrity, impact, influence, and attention value than advertising – but only when it’s actually used by the media that you have targeted

About Publicity • It involves supplying information that is factual, interesting,  and newsworthy to mediaAbout Publicity • It involves supplying information that is factual, interesting, and newsworthy to media not controlled by you, such as radio, television, magazines, newspapers, trade journals, newsletters, and websites • It is not advertising, since you do not pay for time or space, nor is it public relations. Public relations is a broader task, which included publicity but involves promotion, public affairs, advertising and opinion making. What is Publicity? :

About Publicity • Journalists want two things from publicists: – Your facts must be reliable –About Publicity • Journalists want two things from publicists: – Your facts must be reliable – Your material must have a news angle or news peg that makes it different and interesting. What is Newsworthy? :

About Publicity • Editors, reporters, and public service directors want you to be specific because theyAbout Publicity • Editors, reporters, and public service directors want you to be specific because they need facts, not impressions, and focus, not fuzziness • Before you write a single press release, make a list of the five w s and the h : – Who is doing what for whom? – When , where , and why are they doing it? – How is it being done? – What are the results? Develop Newsworthy Facts :

About Publicity • The only time your publicity material should contain opinions is when you areAbout Publicity • The only time your publicity material should contain opinions is when you are quoting someone • News releases are supposed to be objective and that means that they are written in the third person. Remain Objective:

About Publicity • The most important thing in a news release is the peg  •About Publicity • The most important thing in a news release is the peg • The peg is the focus, the angle, the main point, the unusual idea, the new material, the explanation of how the story will have an impact on the audience An important question you should ask before you send out any news release is: If this story were about an organization you were unfamiliar with, would you be interested in reading it? Have a Peg:

About Publicity • Since national news magazines, as well as all-news television and radio networks, coverAbout Publicity • Since national news magazines, as well as all-news television and radio networks, cover the news so thoroughly, many weekly and daily newspapers limit themselves to local news stories • Localizing news releases pays handsome dividends, with placement rates five to ten times higher than releases without localization In fact, some stories must be localized to get coverage. Have a Local Angle if Possible:

About Publicity • All journalists need quick and easy access to reliable background information • IfAbout Publicity • All journalists need quick and easy access to reliable background information • If you offer solid, useful background information, and reporters get used to turning to you as a source, your media coverage will probably improve. Backgrounding a Story:

About Publicity • Create news by staging an event that is designed to get you coverageAbout Publicity • Create news by staging an event that is designed to get you coverage • The event is not directed at the people who are attending. It is aimed at the media who will be covering what you are doing. Create a Newsworthy Event:

About Publicity • If you have story idea, write a letter that pitches and summarizes yourAbout Publicity • If you have story idea, write a letter that pitches and summarizes your story (don’t write the story!). Include the following information: – Tell the editor that you are offering an idea for a feature story – Summarize the idea in one paragraph – Explain why the editor’s audience would be interested – Emphasize the scope and importance of the story – Give a few interesting details – Describe photograph possibilities. Working with Feature Editors:

Writing an Effective Press Release Writing an Effective Press Release

Writing a Press Releases are the Cornerstone of Any Publicity Program • Write them well andWriting a Press Releases are the Cornerstone of Any Publicity Program • Write them well and your business will get its share of coverage • Poorly written releases end up in the circular file (trash)

Writing a Press Release • Journalist prefer plain 8 ½ x 11 inch paper • IfWriting a Press Release • Journalist prefer plain 8 ½ x 11 inch paper • If you use letterhead, you won’t be able to fit as much copy on the page as you would if you used a heading • Keep typed lines 50 to 60 characters long, including punctuation marks and spaces. This length is easy to read and allows for margins wide enough for editing • Press release should be no more than 500 words • Indent each paragraph 10 spaces. Press Release Format:

Writing a Press Release • Double space the entire release • To prevent typesetting errors, Writing a Press Release • Double space the entire release • To prevent typesetting errors, avoid using the hyphens at the ends of lines • If your release goes onto the second page, type “MORE” across the bottom of the first page at least three times • Mark the end of the release with the pound sign repeated several times “###”Press Release Format (continued):

Writing a Press Release • Your release should start with a heading that includes the nameWriting a Press Release • Your release should start with a heading that includes the name , address , and telephone number of your business and the name of a contact person • It is always good to include a cell phone number • Include the estimated date that it will arrive on the editor’s desk • Put “For Immediate Release” in the header • If there are pictures in your release, use the phrase “With Art, ” and add a word or two to identify each shot. Press Release Headings:

Writing a Press Release Headings (example): February 8, 2006 For Immediate Release With Art: 1. Writing a Press Release Headings (example): February 8, 2006 For Immediate Release With Art: 1. Headshot of Mr. Doe MARKETRI LLC 62 W. State Street Doylestown, PA 18901 Contact: Debra Andrews Day: (215) 489 -5563 Cell phone (215) 534 -5085 Background information: www. marketri. com

Writing a Press Release • Write in inverted pyramid style, because editors cut from the bottomWriting a Press Release • Write in inverted pyramid style, because editors cut from the bottom of a story • The most important information belongs in the first paragraph, and additional information follows in order of importance. Organizing Copy: Who, what, when, where, how Quotes by people of interest About the Co.

Contacting the Media Contacting the Media

Contacting the Media • Make a list of media outlets that you believe will be interestedContacting the Media • Make a list of media outlets that you believe will be interested in your story • Seek out the right contact person by reading the publication, watching the program or by calling the publication/station – Features editor – Business reporters – Planning editor. Compile a Press List:

Contacting the Media • Most members of the media like e-mail unless it is a “BreakingContacting the Media • Most members of the media like e-mail unless it is a “Breaking Story. ” Then they like to be called. Don’t “pop” in unexpectedly • Follow-up later that day or the next day with a phone call – Verify they got the press release (beware of spam filters) – Ask if they are the right point of contact • They don’t seem to like if you ask them whether the story will run • Ask if they need any further information. Contact the Media:

Contacting the Media • Send a “thank you” e-mail or note • Never send gifts! •Contacting the Media • Send a “thank you” e-mail or note • Never send gifts! • Make a notation in your file that the press release ran so you have history to draw from next time. The Story Ran!

Making the Most of Your Story Making the Most of Your Story

Recycling Your Publicity • Use reprints of the most favorable clippings in your promotional material –Recycling Your Publicity • Use reprints of the most favorable clippings in your promotional material – You need to get permission from the publication. (Some will charge for reprints; some won’t)

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