Do you need a press release as part of your marketing strategy? Yes, you do. A press release is not only resourceful to medium and large enterprises but also to startups. With a press release, you can capture the attention of journalists and local media. And with their help, potential clients in your target audience clients can learn about your brand.
Press releases also come in handy when you want your business announcements to reach the public. Even though certain brands think of this strategy as outdated, they are wrong. After all, in the modern world, press releases are a vital part of marketing.
In order to use a press release successfully, you need to fulfill the standard requirements of a press release. Beyond that, you need to include unique elements that other brands aren’t using so that you can truly stand out in the market. The only way to stay top of mind is to go above and beyond the standard requirements of a press release and give your audience extra incentive to listen to what you have to say. Incorporating eye-catching visual content is one way to do this. You can also tweak your press release for each media outlet or journalist so that it aligns with their interests and their specific specialty. This way, you will have different versions that you can send to each person you’re reaching out to
In this article, we’ll talk about the 8 key features of a successful press release.
1) Proper formatting
When you’re writing a press release, one of the crucial requirements is that you follow the correct format. Without following the proper format, your content will never be published in a reputable media outlet, let alone be accepted by a media professional who knows what they are doing. Press releases stand out from blog posts and other articles because they have a very specific format that distinguishes them from this other content. Whether the target audience for your press release is consumers, local journalists, and the media, this audience needs to recognize that your press release is a press release right from the get-go.
Any good press release should begin with a catchy headline that is free of clickbait. Next, you need a subheading that expands on the headline. You also need to include a dateline that highlights the origin of the news you’re sharing. The introductory paragraph should cover the what, why, when, where, and how of your story, and the body should get further into detail regarding the main aspects of your story. Your concluding paragraph should wrap everything up. You should follow this paragraph with a boilerplate that explains relevant details about the company or project that is the subject of your press release. Finally, you should include contact details to make it easier for a journalist to reach you for more details.
There are many press release templates available online, but you need to stick to templates that have been developed by experts so that you can be sure you’re doing the right thing. If you follow the inverted pyramid writing technique, then you can be confident that you’ve delivered your news in an effective and engaging format. Keep your writing short and straightforward. Last but not least, by the end of your press release, you need to make sure you’ve addressed the why, who, when, what, and where of your story.
2) Newsworthy content
The main purpose of a press release is to convey a specific message. Therefore, you need to use an approach that will highlight that message. With that said, consider these two factors when preparing your press release:
- Is your story newsworthy? Will it capture the interest of your audience?
- Is it relevant to the target audience?
Some events that you can consider developing into a story include an industry crisis or a business crisis, business events, and product launches. You can also write a story that focuses on a recent hire (if they have a unique background or unique skills), a social initiative, or an award that you recently won.
3) A charming headline
For a press release to capture the audience’s attention, the headline must be captivating and memorable. Therefore, it’s important to invest time in developing your headline. Your headline creates the first impression, and you have a few seconds to create a good first impression that will encourage people to keep reading for more details. In order for your headline to spur the audience’s interest, it has to be catchy, short, and informative.
Truth be told, many people will read the headline but only a handful will devour the entire text. Seize this opportunity to intrigue your audience and compel them to read the rest of your press release. To optimize your press release, you need to keep your headline under 70 characters. Moreover, consider these tips:
- Use adjectives sparingly
- Use action words to make it sound urgent
- Audiences love statistics, so you should include numbers
It’s quite startling how fast news comes and goes these days. With so much information, news, and data available daily, consumers have limited time to spend on each story. As such, it’s important to be careful about the length of your press release.
Ideally, you should write a short, clear, and concise press release that’s well outlined. Remember, the press release’s main objective is to generate audience interest by sharing just enough information to make them yearn for more. For this reason, a one-page press release is enough.
5) One or more CTAs
Besides being informative, you can leverage your press release to drive a particular action from your prospects. That means you have to determine first the kind of action you want to inspire before creating the CTA (call-to-action) button.
Since most of your audiences will not devour the entire text, placing the CTA at the end will be a waste. Instead, you should position it after the first or second paragraph. Meanwhile, consider these tips for an effective CTA:
- It has to stand out
- Your CTAs are more effective when they have links
- It needs to be formatted properly (make it bold and italic)
6) Include credible quotes
The expression of authority in any press release helps provide social proof which is vital. Therefore, to substantiate your text, including a factual quote from someone who has authority in the brand or project that you’re promoting. With one or two credible quotes, you can earn your audience’s trust. In order to do this right, you need to source the quote from your company’s experts, executives, top influencers, or clients.
7) Include visual aids
Nowadays, people of all ages are intrigued by content with visual elements. To capture attention effectively, you can include multimedia in your press release to spice it up. Multimedia content helps because the attention span of audiences is quite short. With visual content, you can hold their attention a little longer.
Visual content can also illustrate complex data or emphasize the point you’re trying to make with your press release. By breaking down complex information in the form of visuals, you’re making your press release easier to read for your target audience. They will appreciate this. Visuals help if you’re in an especially technical industry like the programming, cryptocurrency, and cybersecurity industries.
8) Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Lastly, you must employ SEO practices when writing your press release. After all, the right SEO tactics will determine the visibility of your content when it’s posted online. Optimizing your press release is quite effective for your marketing strategy since the more visible your press release is online, the more traffic you will attract.
When writing your press release, keep your language natural while sticking to the correct format. To comply with the recent updates on the Google algorithm, you should avoid poor grammar and misspellings. These kinds of mistakes can affect how Google crawls your content. To optimize your writing, make sure you do the following:
- Keep the sentences short
- Use bullets if you need to create a long list
- Keep the writing natural
Now that we’ve gone over the key aspects of a press release, are you ready to apply these key features and create a successful press release? Well, you’ve got all you need. However, you don’t have to do this alone.
Creating a press release can be very time-consuming. You may have all the correct information but be unsure of how to turn it into a winning press release. If this is the case, fear not. It is for this very reason that PR agencies like Pressfarm exist. The experts at Pressfarm can help you turn your knowledge into newsworthy content by creating email pitches, press releases, guest posts and media kits that can be used to capture media attention and inspire your target audience.
Pressfarm’s PR professionals and expert writers can also help proofread and edit an existing press release for you, in addition to providing insight and advice into the PR industry. Moreover, by providing custom media lists and a database of 1 million+ journalist, Pressfarm can help you connect with the best journalists in your niche. By partnering with Pressfarm, you could launch a PR campaign that boosts your online visibility by helping your brand to feature in relevant search results.