We typically get sent around 40-50 press releases a week, plus several hundred that we pick up on the press wires. Most of these are quite boring. We publish around 10-12 per week. Here are a few hints and tips for how you can get your press release covered.1. Include a photograph
This should be a photograph that you have taken or own the rights to. It should not be a stock photograph. Press releases with a picture can be up to 4 times as likely to be published.
2. Send in a small gift with your press release
This could be a standard type corporate gift with your logo on it (anything except a data stick – most journalists have many of these in their drawers). A bottle of bubbly (to celebrate the launch of your new product) or a box of chocolates could be a good alternative.
3. Avoid busy periods (like major trade shows) to put out your press release. It could easily get lost in the noise. For example, at the time of Call Centre Expo we can be sent over 200 press releases in one week. Better to publish it during the quiet season where it has a better chance of being picked up.
4. Study the type of news stories that get published and try to emulate those. Don’t presume that because you find a story interesting it would be interesting for your audience. Here are the sorts of stories that tend to get covered:
– Human interest stories
– New businesses
– Mergers and acquisitions
– Good news stories (new jobs being created)
– Survey results
– Sexy stories
The following stories are less likely to be covered:
– New product launches
– Strategic alliances
– Bad news stories
5. Make it a news story and not a financial release
– Ticker symbols
– The leading company (all companies describe themselves as the leading)
– Avoid jargon
6. Avoid marketing type words
– Until now
– Until now
– simple to use
– Unlike any other product
– unrivalled track record of success
– is the only
7. Do not embargo a press release
It is a bad ploy to make it sound like it is better news. Fine for government announcements, but otherwise a bad move.
Quite often by embargoing a press release you will just miss the deadline for that week, or the journalist will put it to one side and forget about it until it is old news. If there is a real embargo keep it in your mailbox until it is OK to send it.
8. Include contact details on the press release and make somebody available to handle the call.
9. Make it as easy as possible for the journalist to cut and paste the article straight away. This means removing all hyperbole and making the story read like a news story.
10. Send in press releases by email and with the minimum amount of formatting.
Use an anti spam service to ensure the right story reaches the right editor
don’t sound desperate
Include a Logo or Picture with your text
“Avoid jargon” – isn’t that obvious? Who would spend time and money sending a PR and use profanity in it? Otherwise, it’s a good article.