Press release writers and public relations professionals are two different things. It’s important to know this when seeking the help of a press release writer. Just because someone knows how to craft a press release does not mean that they have connections with major news networks. Although if you can find someone who does both, then you’re in good shape getting the word out to your business.
What should you look for in a press release writer?
A good press release writer will skillfully extract the basic five W’s and H of your story. That stands for Who, What, When, Where, How and Why. You may not have a why, and it’s okay if you skip that for now. But in general this is the format to follow.
Unlike an informative article, in a press release, the most important information comes first. Think of an upside down triangle. Your reader will be in a hurry for the news. State it up front before drilling down into detail farther along in your press release.
After you cover the Who, What, When, Where, How and Why of your news release, fill up the lower half of the article with some supporting details. Slip in an expert quote. Share a positive endorsement from a happy customer. If you don’t have these yet, it’s okay. Use the space to elaborate on the “why” if you must.
At the end of your press release, include contact information. This should be contact information that you would want to share with the public. It should not be your mother’s email address… unless that’s the email address you’re using to make contact with the press.
It is customary to include a few things at the start of your press release. Add the words “FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE” along with a date and location where the news is taking place. If this is virtual news that’s going out globally by your website, you can omit the location.
NOTE: the “for immediate release” line might mess up search engine results. If permissible on the media site where you’re publishing, skip that. Instead, open with a 2- or 3-line summary. This is key for your SEO. This one short section delivers all pertinent info a speed-reader might need, in case they want to take a screenshot and then click away.
Another important element of an online press release is keywords. Many people do not understand the power of keywords. If you choose the wrong ones you could completely attract the wrong people who have absolutely no interest in what you offer.
But if you choose the right ones, you’ll lure in buyers who are already poised to take action and make a purchase from your company.
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