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    7 Replies Latest reply on Jan 2, 2008 10:13 AM by LUCKIEST

    How to write a news release

    puzzleman Tracker
      I have several interesting things to say about my company that I am sure would get attention from media. Like New children products, Child product safety news, Workforce that is over 80% retirees, Flexible scheduling for employees, Acceptance into prestigious art shows, etc.

      I am not sure of how to present these to the local media. I have read about doing news releases but they have so many rules and formats to strictly follow. Do these rules and formats work? What has worked for you? What help can you give me?
        • Re: How to write a news release
          LUCKIEST Guide
          Lets start off simple. Put all your ideas down on paper. Make a strategy plan.
          Present the most important ideas first and fill in on the subjects.
          It really is the editor at the newspaper who dictates what will be released.
          If you want to use us as a sounding board, go right ahead.
          You will get great feed back, LUCKIEST
          • Re: How to write a news release
            Lighthouse24 Ranger

            You're in the St. Louis area, right? If you haven't already, visit this link:



            Your paper has a really cool "PR Zone" feature that allows you to choose a category in the left column and post your own press releases -- I think almost everything posted makes it into the on-line edition.

            The trick to getting it into the printed edition is to link your story to some other topical issue -- for example, when the paper was running a story on child safety and leaded paint, that would have been the time to release "Local Puzzlemaker Keeps Children's Toys Safe" or something like that. Editors are more able to see this as "news" that readers would want to know, as opposed to just free advertising for you.

            If you're displaying at craft or toys shows in other cities, find their newspaper's on-line sites and post there, as well, linking yourself to their show or event.

            Hope this helps. Merry Christmas.
            • Re: How to write a news release
              Lighthouse24 Ranger

              P.S. Your release should be:
              1) clear (limit your story to a single key point or event that readers will care about);
              2) concise (keep it brief - short words, short sentences);
              3) correct (no spelling, grammar, or factual errors).

              I've mentioned in other posts that I rarely use SEO, Google ads, or other on-line referral methods to drive business -- and active use of press releases through local media networks like your newspaper are a big part of the reason I don't. I agree that you have some great stories to tell, and I believe you are right on target to "exploit" the local media to help you tell them. Best wishes!
              • Re: How to write a news release
                GENEJMARKS Wayfarer

                You can send out the release via PRNewswire too. They're not cheap and I can't really say if you get a good ROI or not.

                What I've done is build, over the years, my own media database of journalists, editors, etc. that I've gotten to know. You can start by buying a list from a list company and adding to it as you build relationships. Then send your press release directly out to your database.

                Like all the other noise in the media, I don't think things get noticed until they're sent again and again. Getting a monthly press release out is the best way to "nudge" people in the media to remember you and what you do. You need patience.
                • Re: How to write a news release
                  birdcity Newbie

                  Putting out your own news release is an excellent way of getting unsolicited publicity. You are correct in that each publication has their own style and adhering to that style can greatly increase your chances of getting published. There are some things to consider if you are looking to write your own news release:

                  1. Write a structurally sound news release. As a previous poster noted, straight and to the point sentences are key. Additionally, make your most important points known first and support those points in subsequent paragraphs. A poorly written release will get dumped immediately.

                  2. Make sure your release "pops". Writers and editors receive new releases all time, so make sure that your headlines are designed to catch a readers eye.

                  3. Target your recipients. Sending a release to a general news desk is fine, but to increase your chances of getting noticed, send your release to specific individuals (if possible). Which is better, sending a release to a general person or someone who actively writes on your particular subject matter? Most publications now print the journalists name and sometimes their e-mail address. This ensures that your release is read by those that understand your business. Also, another good tip is to never repeatedly send the same release. That's an easy way to get blocked by the publication.

                  4. Do some research. Take some time and google the publications you wish to get coverage in. Make a distribution list of those publications and individuals that would be interested in your news release. This will help you in distributing future releases. It will also save money considering that a wire service could cost you approximately $600.00 per release.

                  Hope this helps. If you have any other questions, feel free to ask. I've been doing corporate communications and public relations for nearly a decade so I understand that there is a method to getting media attention. Good luck!

                  Kijafa Dickinson
                    • Re: How to write a news release
                      LUCKIEST Guide
                      birdcity, read your answer on How to write a news release, very informative, which them got me to check under Members "A few words about me and my business" Your writing shows that you have been doing
                      corporate communications and public relations successfully.
                      Love your last line "The overall focus is to provide distinction and
                      Hope to read more, LUCKIEST