Getting your press release published can feel like an impossible task! You spend ages writing a great press release on your company’s latest news and email it to dozens of newspapers. You don’t hear anything back, and your press release never makes it to print!
I recently attended an interesting workshop – ‘Catching the Upturn – How to get a Press Release Published’ at the Reading Chronicle. So, I thought I would share some expert advice straight from the journalists about how to get your press release published…
If you are writing about a specific event or campaign, you should have your press release finished and submitted to the relevant journalists well before the deadline. The newspaper industry work about a month in advance, obviously they need to have their content organised and ready for print. And once your press release has been chosen to be published, the process can take a few weeks of re-writing and approving it from both parties.
Don’t just email your press release to several email addresses you have pulled off websites. Get on the phone and make an impact. You really have to stand out and be memorable in just a few seconds, think of the amount of emails and calls journalists receive from companies every day. Find the relevant journalist and his or her details and get talking about your company!
Always supply one or two high quality photos with every press release you send. You should make your story as accessible as possible.
Always provide an honest interpretation of your company’s statistics.
5. Email Subject
This is probably one of the most important factors to get your press release noticed and published! Journalists receive hundreds of press releases via email every day and literally just press delete on the majority, without even reading them. For example, a good email subject is –“Linear Blue Launch New Mobile Web Brand”. The journalist may change the title for the published press release, but this doesn’t matter, it’s getting noticed that’s the difficult part!
It must be short, snappy and to the point.
7. Word Count
350 words, including any additional contact information.
8. Keep it local
You will have a much better chance at getting your press release published in local newspapers, rather than the national ones.
9. Know your target
Is your press release news, business, education or health? You need to target your audience and contact the relevant journalists.
10. Is it recent?
Recent press is what newspapers want!
Only use quotes if it really adds something to the story.
An event announcement (pre-event) will usually only warrant a NiB (news in brief) , so give a minimum of detail. If it has not happened yet, it’s not news.
Reference sources for data and statistics.
14. 7 Ws
Remember the Ws – Who, what, why, where, when, how and so what!
15. Oh factor!
Make sure it has the Oh factor, and your press release cutting will follow!