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How to Write Press Releases for Media Coverage

The first step when you’re writing a press release is to make sure you have the logo of your business at the top of the page and then obviously “Press Release” written beneath that. The top of the press release is really the most important area. Journalists are very busy people. They won’t have time to read through the whole release. And they’ll probably only read the first paragraph and the title. So you’ve got to make these really, really good. With the title, keep it short. Between three and five words is good. Next, have the date that you’re sending out the press release, and also where your business is located. If you’re using a submission service there will usually be fields for your logo, contact info’, date, etc.

Let’s assume you are writing a press release about the launch of your startup, make sure that’s really highlighted in the title and the first paragraph. In the first paragraph of a press release, it’s important to have the date you’re sending out the press release and the location of your startup. In the first paragraph, just try and summarise exactly what your startup is, or what your message is.

Make sure you include a link to your website so the journalist can easily click on that and view your website. With the rest of the press release, structure it so the most important information for the journalist is at the top. From there, it will usually get more detailed but less relevant, as you go down. In the second paragraph, you might want to include information about the team, about prices, about how it works, and things like that. Then you can go into more detail as you go further down the press release. But really try and include all the key information at the beginning. Then in the third paragraph, You’ll give even more detail.

Write about exactly what you offer and additional benefits for your target market. What does a client/customer get for there money? What makes it such a great deal? How are you different from your competitors? How is your product/service going to improve their life/business?

Lastly, you might want to add information about other products and/or services you offer. To summarise:

  1. Write about the highlights of your product or service.
  2. Write about what exactly people get for their money, s
  3. Who is it ideal for (target market)?
  4. Write more about the company, the team, the additional benefits.
  5. Explain how you can help in other ways.

Follow the steps below if you’re submitting your press release direct to journalists and newsrooms.

At the end of the press release, make sure you have the word “Ends,” and then beneath that a Notes to Editors section.

In this section, just include your contact information. So if a journalist wants more information, or has questions, or wants images, they can contact you really easy. In this section, you could also include a little summary of your startup or business as well. After you’ve created your press release, then you can put together a list of the journalists that you want to send your press release to. It’s really important to make your list of journalists relevant for your press release. So if your startup is food related, you don’t want to be sending your press release to a sports journalist. This will be annoying for them and a wasted effort for you. There are some tools for finding journalists, such as JustReachOut, which is a new tool that you can use. With JustReachOut, you can search for journalists that write about particular subjects. You could also use Twitter. So you can search for publications on Twitter and find contacts that way as well. So there are different ways. And then once you have your list, if you’re sending out the press release by email, then I would recommend writing individual emails to the journalists with just a short email about the startup, about what you’re sending, and a snappy subject line about what your press release is about.

Also, attach the press release in PDF format to the email so they could easily then open it and print it off if they want to read it later. It’s good news at the moment because there are a lot of new tools out there that make contacting or reaching out to journalists a lot cheaper than it’s traditionally been when you had to hire a PR consultancy and spend a lot of money doing that. So some new tools that I would recommend are GoPRit, which is a startup. And you can send email pitches to select journalists about your startup. And you can also send tweets out to those journalists, which is great.

There’s another good one (already mentioned above) called JustReachOut, which helps you find journalists that write about a particular subject. And then you can also contact them. So this is great when you create your list of journalists that you want to send your press release to because you can find ones that are really relevant for your startup and your story. Another good one is pr.co, which can help you create and write a press release and send it out.

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