Michelle Boyd Waters, M.Ed. | March 31, 2022 6:52 am

Press Releases can help your small business gain publicity through the media. Having media attention gives your business credibility. Here are some tips on how to write your press release that will boost its appeal to the right media outlet.

Use the Correct Format

If you're an English teacher, you know what I'm talking about. This isn't APA or MLA format, but it does need to be correct. There is a format that press releases need to follow. Make sure your yours is written in the correct format, as you will want it to look as professional as possible. It is also a good idea to double-check the grammar, punctuation and spelling before you send it in for submission. Press release distributor, Newswire, shares specific tips on how to format a press release.

Keep It Clear and Concise

Your press release should be no longer than two pages. Media outlets receive lots of press releases and don’t have time to read a ten page report. As a former newspaper reporter, I guarantee you, the editors and reporters eyes are already rolling into the backs of their heads after page two. Keeping your writing clear and concise allow you to fit in the important facts without going over the two page limit. As you decide what information to include, answer the following questions: who, what, why, where, when, and how. Make sure you use the inverted pyramid style of writing, which includes that information in the lead.

What's the Reader Going to Gain?

Give your press releases a call to action. Include something that is going to inspire readers to go to your event, visit your website, attend your grand opening, etc. Writing a blatant ad will be obvious. Incorporate the features and benefits of what you are promoting, and give information on what it will do for your target market. If you are promoting a new food processor, simply stating that it is smaller and takes up less space than previous models isn’t enough. However, writing the information as “the new model is smaller and takes up less space, allowing our customers to have the full chopping power of our larger model, but also save precious counter space” lets the reader know how the new model will help them. 

Also, make sure that your customers are also readers of the publication you're writing for. I guarantee, the editor is looking for a story that will be of interest to their readers, who will then share the story, which will then make the advertisers happy.

Make It Interesting

If your writing is boring, no one is going to want to read it. Try to find a balance between straight facts and excitement. Using the example of the food processor above, announcing that “our new food processor will be available this spring” isn’t as catchy as “our new space-saving food processor will be available this spring, just in time to help you chop fresh vegetables for your summer salads." Of course, that added bit of interest is also what will make that press release relevant for that time of year.

Remember Your Target Market

As you write and submit your press releases, keep your target market in mind at all times. By keeping your audience in mind, you will be able to focus on what information to include and where to submit your press releases. For instance, if you are promoting an event related to children’s health, submitting a press release to the travel editor of your local paper isn’t going to help you.

The media cannot run a story on every press release they receive, but implementing these tips will help you write press releases that grab, and keep, the media’s attention. The old saying “practice makes perfect” rings true for press releases; the more you write them, the better you will get.

I also recommend you create a media kit. Fortunately, my new favorite design tool, Canva, includes a media kit maker.

5 Examples of Published Press Releases You Can Mimic

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About the Author

I chose to proactively retire from the classroom teaching and share my gifts in a different context. I'm a damn good teacher and I'm tired of working within a frustrating system that won't let me do what I know is right. So I'm taking my business full time -- and I'm still educating, still making a difference in the world. And I want to help you do the same.

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