How to Write a Proper Press Release


Self-promotion plays a big part in the success of any business. Publicity generated by press releases is free, and often the coverage is far more extensive than anything you could have hoped to say in an ad. Keep in mind that your goal is to attract favorable media attention while following these steps.

Things You'll Need

  • Bonded Paper
  • Word-processing Software
  • Photographers
  • Computers
  • Printers
  • Cameras
  • Decide why you are writing a press release and determine your focus.

  • Keep it short and to the point. Usually, press releases are no more than one page.

  • Print the words "FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE" in the top left-hand margin in all caps. Follow this line with relevant contact information: name, title, address, phone number, email address.

  • Create a headline and center it in bold type just above the first line of the body of the press release. Headlines typically highlight the most important, significant or shocking fact in the release.

  • Create a dateline - the first line of the body of your press release - that includes the city where the release is generated and the date (i.e. LOS ANGELES, CALIF. - January 1, 2000).

  • Make certain the first paragraph includes all the vital information: the where, when, why, what and who.

  • Include some tantalizing peripheral details or facts to spark curiosity in following paragraphs. A good press release not only informs but also teases.

  • Wrap up the last paragraph with a "for additional information" line, a place to find more details. An annual report or a Web site can be great sources of information.

  • Center these marks, " # # #" or "-30-", at the bottom of the page to indicate the end of your release.

  • Print your release on high quality paper using a good laser or inkjet printer. You only get one chance to make a solid first impression.

Tips & Warnings

  • Press releases are written in block style, so no paragraph indentation is necessary.
  • Have an objective person read your press release and tell you whether he or she would be interested enough to read a newspaper story about it. If not, consider going back to the drawing board for a rewrite.
  • Hire a professional photographer to cover your event so you can include relevant photos with your release. Many newspapers and local magazines appreciate not having to send out a photographer.
  • Send your press release to the reporter that covers the area you are targeting instead of a managing or senior editor. Often, this will turn into a story much faster.
  • Keep the tone of your release all business. Don't go into too much personal or non-business related detail or your press release will likely end up in the editor's circular file.
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