HOME::Public Relations

Top 7 Tips For Writing News Releases That Get Noticed

By Claire Cunningham

[ Print | Email This | Bookmark ]

What do you do with junk mail? Are you like me? I toss this stuff without opening it Ė unless I see some benefit. Publication editors do the same. They toss news releases that donít demonstrate a benefit to their audience.

Whatís the difference between a release that gets used and one that hits the editorís circular file? Here are seven easy tips for writing releases that get picked up rather than thrown out.

  1. Make sure itís newsworthy.

    Whatís newsworthy, you ask. To be newsworthy your topic needs to be timely, of interest to the publicationís audience, benefit-oriented, and substantive (that is, not self-serving, hype or fluff.)

  2. Write a powerful headline.

    The headline is what will pull in the editor or leave her/him cold. Keep it short and descriptive, but make it interesting.

  3. Use journalist style.

    Editors are looking for the facts, not fluff. Be sure to include the essentials: Who, What, When, Where, Why and How.

  4. Keep it brief.

    Editors are pressed for time and inundated with releases. Keep yours to one page, 300-800 words. The headline and first two paragraphs are the most important parts of your release.

  5. Avoid jargon.

    Even if youíre sending a release on a technical topic to a technical journal, resist the temptation to use acronyms. Spell it out! Use common language. It will make your releases more readable and accessible.

  6. Proof it.

    The accuracy of your release Ė including spelling and grammar Ė reflects on your company. If you arenít good at proofreading your own stuff, enlist someone else to do it.

  7. Include a photo.

    Okay. This isnít a writing tip, but itís good advice anyway. Publications are looking for good quality visuals, so including a photo, illustration, chart or graph (with a caption, please) increases your chance of getting picked up.

About the author

Claire Cunningham, president of Clairvoyant Communications, Inc., has 20+ years’ experience developing and implementing successful marketing and communications programs. Sign up for Claire’s monthly e-newsletter, Communiqué, at http://www.clairvoyantcommunications.com Claire can be reached at 763-479-3499 (claire@claircomm.com)

Source: http://Top7Business.com/?expert=Claire_Cunningham

Article Submitted On: May 12, 2005