How to write a killer press release
At GingerComms, we take copy writing very seriously. And why shouldn’t we? We know from our contacts what makes a good story, and have graduated from the old school press release – which we find rarely gets cut through – to writing content in our own unique style. Read on for our top tips on how to write a strong story which will smash your client’s coverage goals.
Cut the cr*p
Most journos we know will press ‘delete’ on your email the second they spot waffle in a client release. And unfortunately many press releases still include way too much rambling on – so just cut to the chase. Make your content crisp and clean and resist the urge to waffle, no matter how pushy your client is.
Ditch the sales talk
While getting the media to mention your client’s key messages is important, avoid going into sales territory at all costs. No matter how you dress it up, you can’t hide sales messaging and it’s the biggest turn off ever for journalists. They’ll either cut it out of their article or avoid writing about your client completely, so don’t turn your press release into a sales sheet. This includes your client quote too – anything too jargon or salesy is one of the ultimate PR turn offs for the media.
Push back on your client
We’ve all had to deal with pushy clients in the past and know how difficult they can be. But remember you’re the PR expert here, not them – they’ve come to you for advice, so don’t feel intimidated. Make sure you’re given them your expert consultancy on what’s going to get them the star coverage they want.
It’s hard not to yawn when you read a stuffy release, whether it’s about a lukewarm announcement or something you just know you’ll struggle to sell in. So why not get your client some juicy coverage by doing something more creative instead? Be brave and explain why old fashioned releases rarely get cut through, and to hit your PR targets you need to do something different and creative.
No unnecessary formatting – think like a journo
Journalists hate having to go through bullet points and sub headings when it comes to reading a press release. They’re short on time and adding in formatting and content no-one needs isn’t going to help.
Here at GingerComms HQ, we find the best way to get a story coverage is to write copy as if it’s drafted by a journalist. So think like a member of the media when you write up the content, and think ‘news copy’ rather than ‘traditional press release’.
Also – make sure your release isn’t too long and gets to the point quickly – and cut out subheadings, bullet points, essentially anything which is going to clog up your story.