A press release is an excellent way to draw attention to your company, product or service. Many people believe that a press release has to be written by a professional public relations firm, at a high cost to your company. This is untrue. You can write a simple, straightforward press release for your company and distribute it at little or no cost.
A press release begins with a title and ends with contact information. In between is where things can get a little muddled, so let’s review the basic parts of a press release:
- Eye-catching Title – should be written in bold font, include the name of your company and to what the announcement pertains. Example: “YourCo Goes Green by Capturing the Wind”.
- Body Content – the next few paragraphs of your press release should pertain to the big news. Provide facts to back statements. For example, have you cut costs? By how much – give numbers. Are you hiring? Tell readers how many positions and where the jobs will be located. Is it bad news? Tell readers what actions your company is taking to rectify errors or reassure shareholders.
- Company Information – include history, founders, years in business and a link to the company website.
- Contact Information – this will include the name and mailing address of the company, name of the person in charge of public relations and media, their direct phone number and/or cell number, fax number, email address and a link to the company website.
Getting the News Out
A press release should be posted on a company’s website under the “latest news” section. In addition, it should be sent out to local and national media outlets, as applicable. Email the press release as in-line text with little or no formatting to the news desks of newspapers, radio stations and television stations. Source the addresses via their websites. Other free sources include companies like PR Leap and PR Web.
If you are looking to reach a wider audience, there are news release companies like Business Wire and PR Newswire that can get your message sent to hundreds of contacts in one fell swoop. The average cost for these services is $200-1000. Unlike the free services, these paid services have more contacts and greater credibility with the news agencies.
Seda, Catherine. ” Marketing, business – Get the Word Out.” <em>Entrepeneur</em> N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2010. <http://www.entrepreneur.com/marketing/publicrelations/gettingpress/article76742.html>.
“Public relations, press release distribution, investor relations, SEC filing | Business Wire.” Public relations, press release distribution, investor relations, SEC filing | Business Wire. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2010. <http://www.businesswire.com/portal/site/home/>.
PR Newswire: press release distribution, targeting, monitoring and marketing.” PR Newswire: press release distribution, targeting, monitoring and marketing.< N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2010. <http://www.prnewswire.com/>.
“PRWeb Press Release Distribution Increases Online Visibility and Web Traffic.” PRWeb Press Release Distribution Increases Online Visibility and Web Traffic. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2010. <http://www.prweb.com>.
“PR Leap: Online Press Release Distribution.” PR Leap: Online Press Release Distribution.< N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2010. <http://www.prleap.com/>.