Marketing: Writing press releases

Robert Downes

Robert Downes from the Forum of Private Business gives ten tips on writing a press release

Expert: Robert Downes

Company: Forum of Private Business

Background: Senior Policy Advisor at the not-for-profit Forum of Private Business organisation

At the heart of any successful PR campaign is a well-written press release. Here are our top tips:

1. Find the human angle
The story your press release focuses on must be newsworthy. Key is a ‘human' angle. It needs to be interesting to Joe Bloggs around the corner.

2. Know your audience
It's rare it will appeal to everyone. Target the right publications - and therefore the right audience.

3. Keep it relevant
Your story has to be relevant to the audience you're targeting. When it comes to local press especially, it has to appeal to people in that area.

4. Be on time
Timing is key. If your story is about an event, get the release sent out in plenty of time.
5. Keep it simple
Keep your message simple and stick to just one message per release.

6. Use facts (not opinions)
News stories must be backed up by facts. For example, use a quote from a satisfied customer to back up what you are saying.

7. Include contact details
Every press release should have relevant contact details on it - a direct line or mobile number.

8. Make sure you’re available
Make sure the contact is available and confident and trustworthy enough to answer questions.

9. Use social media
Promote your release on Twitter, blogs and other social networking sites to get the most exposure.

10. Optimise for search engines
Get some keywords and links back to your website into your press release


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