I’m sure there are probably a lot of new developments and interesting things happening in your business, but you have to be sure that you don’t miss an opportunity to share the news. Unfortunately, not many know the best times to write a press release so I’m hoping this quick guide will help.
You know you need a press release when you’re:
Launching a New Product or Service
Be sure to include a description of the product or service; why the product or service was created or what benefit it will have for your customers. You can also add an example of how it’s used; feel free to create a video walk through or live demonstration. You can add pricing, when the product/service will be available. Add in a quote/comment from satisfied customers, let people know how and where to get the new product/service and don’t forget to include information about your company.
Opening a New Location
This is the perfect opportunity to invite the media to meet with yourself and staff members. Let readers know if there will be celebrities there, refreshments, door prizes or a product demonstration. Most importantly, describe the location, the date, time and address. If you have prepared an agenda of activities for opening day, you can add that into the release as well. Always try to highlight the ‘newsworthiness’ in your release by stating if you are doing something for the first time in your community or if you have a long history of satisfying customers with your products/services and company info is required here as well.
Hosting an Event
If you have an event announcement, this is a great time to write and share a press release. Whether you are hosting the event yourself or you’re sponsoring an event organized by someone else, it’s a good idea to let the media and your audience know about it. The same rules apply here as in announcing a new location. Let readers know any event activities, special appearances, what the event is for or who benefits i.e. for a charity or special cause and your ‘newsworthiness’ angle should speak to how this event helps others or the community. If this is an event with a long history, you can make mention of how many funds were raised over the years or what plans you have for helping the community in the future.
Hiring New People
This works more for larger companies, but if your new hire comes with loads of experience and brownie points for dramatically helping other employers, then you could have a good bit of news on your hands. Large companies often announce new executives by talking about the impact they have had on other businesses and how long they have been working in their industry. If you are a startup or small business that hires an intern, you can focus on their academic achievements and milestones they’ve hit in their career so far.
Launching a Challenge or Contest
You have to be careful with this one because there is not much newsworthiness in a challenge unless there is a special cause behind it. The Ice Bucket Challenge comes to mind as a perfect example. Pouring ice cold water over your head is no big news but when it raises awareness or money for a cause, then that’s something I would send to the press. If you’re holding a contest or challenge, include the entry details: how and where to enter, any rules or guidelines, describe the prize(s) and you can even do a follow-up release announcing challenge/contest winners with their quote or comment on the experience.
Hopefully this post gave you some ideas on when to write a press release, but the real pay off will be in making it as newsworthy as possible. Always think about how your release will appeal to the audience of the media you’re targeting and use the appropriate opening to get the attention of journalists, reporters and editors.