If you're looking to submit a press release, you know all the reasons why they're important. However, before you can get your PR published and into the hands of journalists, bloggers and customers, you have to know how to write a press release. The goal of a PR is to 'sell' your ideas, but there's a fine line between selling effectively and sounding like a sleazy used car salesman.
Stick To The Facts
A blatant sales pitch in a PR can instantly turn off readers. Readers want to know the facts and they don't want to be told what to think. By providing readers with the facts of your announcement, you'll let them come to their own conclusions. This will help maintain your credibility, while allowing readers to judge the newsworthiness of your PR for themselves.
Don't Just Tell Your Readers You're The Best, Prove It!
When writing a release, the easiest way to prove you're the best is to use attribution to back up any claims. For example, instead of writing that your business is the best in the industry, use proof. If you've been named the best bakery in your city by a local publication, consider which of these sentences proves it:
"Cupcakes By Karen Named The Best Bakery In Chicago By Taste Of Chicago Magazine"
"Come To Cupcakes By Karen And Taste The Best Cupcakes In Chicago"
See how the second one seems like an advertisement and not a news announcement? While there is news in there (Cupcakes By Karen has been named Chicago's favorite bakery), readers can't instantly determine what it is. Readers shouldn't ever need to read more than just the headline to find the news nugget of your PR. Determining whether you need to back up your claims is easy. If your claims leave readers asking, 'says who?' afterwards, you need to add the proof.
Use Quotes To Inject Opinion
Even though you have news to announce, the goal of many PRs is to sell! The place to sell your products and services is within the quotes. A quote doesn't follow the same rules as the rest of the PR. Because you're attributing the comments to a real person within your company, you're welcome to say whatever you want! However, even in the quote, it's a good idea to let readers know the why or the how. Consider these two quotes:
"We work hard to take care of our customers."
"Every day we have customers who stop and tell us how we've helped make their birthday party or other event a success. Whether you're looking for a simple, delicious birthday cake or an elaborate, one-of-a-kind wedding cake, we'd love to show you what we can do. We consider our cakes works of art and there's no better feeling than when a customer sees their cake for the first time and tells us how it's exactly what they envisioned."
See the difference? Each one says that Cupcakes By Karen is focused on their customers, but the second really sells their business and lets clients know what they can expect when they work with the bakery.
Learning how to write a press release is an important business tool and it's one that many businesses don't understand. When you submit a press release to traditional media outlets or an online press release distribution site, you want to make sure that you're putting your best efforts forward. Don't fall into the trap of sounding like a sleazy salesman. Your clients, journalists and bloggers can easily spot the sleaze so learn how to write a press release and put your best foot forward.
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