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Making a Statement Loud and Clear

Making a Statement Loud and Clear

Rachel Neal

Company Bio: The last section of your press release is reserved for your company description. Set it apart from the main body copy with the subhead: About COMPANY NAME

This section is for you to shed some light on what your company does and share its business policy. This lends credibility to your company as well as gives the media important information it may need to include in possible stories. Insert your preferred company website information at the end of this section. I prefer hyperlinks if sending electronically for quick access.

Contact Information: Now that the media professional is intrigued, he or she will probably want to contact you for more information, clarification, or fact-checking. The appropriate contact person to answer such questions should be listed. Where contact information should appear, at the top or bottom, is a personal preference, says Laura. “Media people should not have to search for your contacts details, which can happen if it is left to the end of the release.”

Include the following:

  • Company name
  • Contact name
  • Office address
  • Complete telephone and fax numbers
  • E-mail address

  • YOU’RE DONE! Standard to press release writing, signify that the press release is complete by using three # symbols, centered directly underneath the last line of the release.

    Distribution: If you choose to send your press release electronically, which many people prefer nowadays, steer clear of complicated formatting, graphics, and fonts. Some prefer to attach their documents to the email. That is OK, but stick to Word document formats (.doc). PDFs are often complicated, and editors like to save time by copying and pasting, which is difficult in some PDFs. Use your headline as your subject line. (Do not, I repeat, DO NOT put “press release” as your subject line.) If done correctly, your subject will stand out in an overflowing inbox.

    Avoid sending the same release to everyone. Try to angle and tailor multiple releases to different outlets. For example, if your day spa is offering a new service that offers both relaxing and health benefits, it may be wise to focus on the health benefits if distributing to magazines targeted specifically toward health (the layperson won’t understand certain language/jargon that industry professionals will) and leave the crux of the relaxing and beautifying information for the more superficial publications.

    Follow Up: It is important to follow up with recipients of your press release to increase the potential for a feature story. Any form of feedback, even negative, is always helpful.

    Disclaimer: Not every press release will generate feature stories on your company and its products. But a carefully written release will certainly make a lasting impression. So think about what the ultimate goal of the release is. Do you want to drive sales, call attention to a website or service, generate interest about an upcoming event? In other words, what can the reader do with the information provided to benefit your company? If it’s important and buzz worthy, it can be shaped into a press release. What you don’t want to do is share outdated news, unless you plan to put a new spin on it. In today’s fast-paced media maelstrom it’s hard to keep up with constantly updated blogs and social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook. Keep it fresh. Exciting. Up-to-Date. New. Oh, and if you have a moment, check out my blog where I just released an updated and revised version of my article “Making a Statement Loud and Clear: Basic Steps and Expert Tips Unite to help you Write that Killer Press Release”. Gotchya!

    Happy writing!