• It’s no secret that I strongly believe copy (the written part of any marketing material) is the secret to sales success. There are specific formulas that apply to all marketing efforts and they can roll over into publicity, too. At the same time there is a fine line between promotional copywriting and writing for press releases or news releases.

    The main objective of press releases is to share your news. By definition, news is previously unknown information. So, your job is to share information about your business accomplishments that educate and alert the media or your core market about something NEW, timely, relevant and of value.

    It’s also important to know that press releases aren’t just for the media anymore. You can post them to your blog, distribute to free press release sites and use them as sales tools. However, you don’t want your press release itself to be “salesy”.

    Your press release should be written in Associated Press style and should not have hyped up words. The point of your press release is to provide valuable information that will promote thought, action and possibly generate media coverage depending on your press release strategy.

    It’s important to understand that there is a fine line between your promotional materials and your press releases. While you can use a press release as a sales tool, you should not use traditional ‘sales’ language in your release because it will be viewed as hype and quickly end up in the trash (virtually and literally depending on distribution channels).

    If you are interested in media attention you need to follow proper formatting and protocol. When crafted properly, press releases (distributed both online and offline) can help you gain credibility, drive traffic to your website and increase your chances of getting media publicity. Press releases should be a regular part of your promotional plan. As such, it’s important to know that releases need to be written in a different style than traditional web copy, sales letters or any other copy for that matter.

    Here are five tips to help you make the most of your press releases:

    1. Know your strategy before you write your release. (Do you want to generate online traffic or gain traditional media exposure?)
    2. Follow the correct press release format to keep your business reputation in tact
    3. Be clear on the difference between copywriting and writing a press release
    4. Make sure you are delivering news and not a sales pitch
    5. Be sure to distribute your press release to the appropriate channels (i.e. if you’re contacting main stream media have the appropriate contact information for the person that covers that beat)

    By following these simple tips you’ll be better prepared to share your news with the world. You might also find this article helpful. Click here to discover press release writing basics.

    Take a moment to review your press release efforts today.

    What have you done that is newsworthy?
    Are press releases a regular part of your plan to share your gifts with the world?

    Lisa Manyon is "The Business Marketing Architect" a content and copywriting strategist for mission-driven entrepreneurs. She's the creator of the NEW marketing model for success (as seen in Inc. Magazine) that's changing the way people market today. She specializes in powerfully communicating your marketing message to increase results via Manyon Marketing Web Makeovers, website copy packages and content strategies to effectively market your business. She offers a free Copywriting Action Plan and marketing resources on her award winning blog. Her consulting and coaching is known to help produce million dollar results www.writeoncreative.com/blog

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    23 responses to “5 Tips For Writing Press Releases~”

    1. Lisa Manyon says:

      Hi Karen,

      Good for you. I bet you have many more legitimate reasons to issue a press release. KUDOS to you for the non-profit work you do. I think Habitat for Humanity is a wonderful program.

      Here’s a free tool that will help you http://www.writeoncreative.com/pressreleaseproducer.com

      Keep up the wonderful work and let me know how I can support you.

      Lisa

    2. Lisa Manyon says:

      Thanks Irwin,

      It’s worked for me and my biz. 🙂

      Write on!~

      Lisa

    3. Great article! Write On, Lady!! And, I’m going to check out the press release producer you mention in one of the responses. I’ve been meaning to give it a try. Nice to be reminded. XO, Katherine.
      Life Blossoming Systems

    4. Terri Cook says:

      Hey Lisa

      brilliant tips as usual – thanks so much

      cheers

      Terri

    5. Thanks for the great information. I’ve thought about Press Releases many times but have talked myself out of them. This article is a great reminder to put it on my to-do list as a valid and effective form of PR. Thanks for the tips on the free tool you highlighted in your comments. Very helpful. Thanks Lisa.

    6. Excellent post Lisa!
      Thanks for clarifying the difference between a press release and sales copy.

      This really proves the point that we need to know the context of our communication in order for it to be effective!

    7. Lisa Manyon says:

      Katherine,

      Yes, do take it for a spin. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Let me know how it goes.

      Write on!~

      Lisa

    8. Lisa Manyon says:

      Thanks Terri,

      Your support is always appreciated.

      Write on!~

      Lisa

    9. Lisa Manyon says:

      Debbie,

      Press releases are one of the most cost effective ways to get your message out there both online and offline. Don’t hold back.

      Write on!~

      Lisa

    10. Lisa Manyon says:

      Laura,

      Yes indeed. There is a distinct difference between press releases and sales copy. Often when people say press releases don’t work it’s because they have written sales copy and nothing newsworthy. It’s important to have a clear strategy and understand the purpose and formula.

      Write on!~

      Lisa

    11. Great information Lisa! It’s a good reminder to create press releases, and then how to format them. Thank you!

    12. Ellen Martin says:

      Hi Lisa,

      This is really good information. I’ve done lots of newsworthy things in the last six months, but didn’t have a PR plan in place. I will check out the website you included in a comment.

      Thanks so much for sharing!

      Ellen Martin

    13. Thanks for the tips Lisa
      I’m afraid I am a plumber with a leaky tap – formely a PR practitioner I am remiss in issuing releases when I have being doing newsworthy things.
      Thanks for the kick up the proverbial and reminder to take a fresh look at my business news!
      Cheers
      Heidi Alexandra

    14. Lisa,
      Great article to make me think, what do I do that’s newsworthy? Sometimes it’s easy to get busy and forget to publicize opportunities! Great reminder.
      Linda
      .-= Linda P. Jones´s last undefined ..If you register your site for free at =-.

    15. Lisa, this article struck such a cord with me on many of your points having done the press release help you offer! It was a great education and I’m so excited about the release on Tuesday to 3000 media on the list you created for me!
      Lynn

    16. Lisa, as always you provide valuable, and simple and clear tips and advice. Thanks.

    17. Phil Dyer says:

      Another fantastic post, Lisa. You are such an awesome resource!

      Thanks so much,

      Phil
      .-= Phil Dyer´s last blog ..How Would You Like to Spend a Week at an Amazing Villa in Tuscany =-.

    18. Mitch Tublin says:

      Lisa,
      Another ready for primetime post. Thanks for sharing your info.
      Mitch
      .-= Mitch Tublin´s last blog ..World Cup 2010 Not A Sports Story Here =-.

    19. Sue Painter says:

      I love the strategies you lay out in this blog post, Lisa. It’s helpful to write down the purpose, helps me to figure out all the different places I can use what I wrote.
      Sue Painter

    20. Pinky McKay says:

      Hi Lisa, great info- thanks so much for the reminder. As the others say, it is too easy to miss opportunities by not thinking, what am I doing that is newsworthy? you break the steps down so simply.

    21. Lisa Manyon says:

      I’m glad the post was helpful to you and good luck with your new project.
      Write on!~
      Lisa

    22. Having widely used a press release submission to promote many of
      my websites I always make sure that I utilise the well-established news wires to distribute my
      press release. I have tried the free press release web sites but you truly do get what one pays for.
      A press release is too effective a promotional strategy to be cheap on.
      A paid distribution service like PR Buzz, Email Wire, SBWire etc don’t just yield your brand name fantastic exposure but in addition strong back-links and targeted traffic. That is why I continuously employ a press release whenever my blog goes live and give it time to work its magic!

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