Press releases are an essential part of any public relations strategy. And it doesn’t matter if you work for a nonprofit or a Fortune 500 company – at some point, you’re going to need to write one. So below are a few tips to help you do just that…
1. The headline
The headline of your press release should be short, simple, and clearly-worded. This is no time to use vague or extraneous language.
Formatting tip: Make sure your headline is written in bold. You want it to stand out!
2. The body
Like the headline of your press release, the body should be clear and concise. Remember, press releases are meant for news, so state the facts and move on.
A few tips for writing the body…
- Start with the date and city in which the press release originated. For example, ATLANTA – Jan. 19, 2016.
- The first paragraph (one to two sentences) should sum up what the press release is about. The remainder of the release should then elaborate on that.
- Avoid using long sentences and paragraphs. Strive for simplicity.
- Keep your press release factual and focus on the five W’s: Who, what, when, why, and where.
- Be sure to include a quote, ideally from the main individual involved in the subject matter of the release.
3. The boilerplate
The boilerplate is similar to an “about us” section. It should have more information about your organization: Who you are, what your mission is, what you’ve achieved, etc. It should also include a link back to your organization’s website.
Note: It’s fine to use the same boilerplate in every press release. In fact, it’s pretty standard. Just make sure to update that information over time.
4. Contact info
Now depending on your organization and the subject matter of your release, you may way to include media contact information at the end. That way, if a journalist or someone wants to cover your release, they know exactly who to contact and how.
Here’s an example of a press release we recently published:
Have any other questions about writing a press release? Post them in the comments below!