How to Distribute a Press Release

How to Distribute a Press Release

One of the most advantageous opportunities for your brand to represent itself to the general public is to issue official press releases. We’re looking in this article at how to distribute a press release.

You can redefine your brand identity, drive sales and stock value, boost web traffic, and improve your company’s public image.

For each of these goals to be accomplished, a press release that is both effective and appealing to media outlets must be meticulously crafted. 

And once you have drafted, proofed, and double-proofed your press release writing, there are some make-or-break factors to consider before distributing it to the agents who will decide whether or not to send it off to PR distribution

What Is a Press Release?

A well-written press release can promote sales, increase public visibility, and improve brand image.

Press releases can generate media coverage that reaches millions of potential buyers. A product review or feature piece on your product or company is often an implied endorsement from an independent third party. It’s free, unlike advertising. 

Your principal investment is time, plus stamps, stationery, and photocopies. The exposure you obtain may be worth hundreds or thousands of dollars.

Press releases can be:

  1. Your product or in-depth business features.
  2. Staff changes, new recruits, and other business news.
  3. Interviews with you or a company representative on radio or TV.
  4. Product reviews from newspapers, periodicals, magazines, and industry journals

Key Points to Consider

When writing press releases, consider these points:

  1. Releases are used to encourage media coverage of your company or product. Your release will likely be rewritten unless it’s an essential announcement.
  2. The media may call for clarification or more info. Meet their requests and deadlines quickly.
  3. Inaccurate, sloppy writing will get your release tossed. Unprofessional submissions aren’t decipherable. Write clearly and concisely with minimum jargon.
  4. Newsworthy, well-written press releases can be three pages long. One-page releases are appropriate for new hires and company news. (Remember your readership – small newspapers may care about new jobs or promotions, but a city daily won’t.)
  5. Marketing releases are helpful. Ensure maximum customer reach. Distribute press releases at trade shows, associations, and speeches. It will help if you publish your recent press releases on your website for customers and the media.

Questions to Answer

Before answering the question “How to distribute a press release,” you should ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What’s your press release’s goal? Have a new or better product? Want to gain market share? Knowing your goals helps you focus on the release’s text.
  2. Do you have realistic expectations? Your release won’t triple sales overnight. A press release should be part of a more significant PR effort, and results aren’t always quick. There are media success stories, but few companies share them. Ten journalist calls would be great, but one or two will do.
  3. What’s your marketing message? Describe what’s exceptional about your company or product to make the release newsworthy. Answer these questions to find your hook.
  • How does your product or service vary from competitors’? Is it innovative?
  • What makes you attractive to others? Unusual features or benefits will intrigue them. 

What You Should Say in a Press Release

  1. Don’t offer false promises or raise unrealistic expectations. The media will unearth the truth, and you risk lousy coverage.
  2. Personalize your news release. Science editors will be more interested in the product’s chemical composition than its weight-loss potential. If you include a glossy photo that tells a story, it will help your release stand out. As with your press release, recommend a photo caption.
  3. Avoid technical jargon. Don’t presume readers have technical or industrial knowledge.
  4. Study. Target newspapers and magazines’ back issues. Copy their style and content. PR Newswire releases offer style and content ideas.
  5. Details matter. A standardized format is used for press releases.
  • Disclosure. Under your letterhead, write “FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE or FOR RELEASE AFTER (date).” Always boldface, capitalize, and increase the text size.
  • Address. After the release statement, skip two lines. List your company’s spokesperson’s name, title, phone, and fax. Reporters may be unavailable after hours due to deadlines.
  • Headline. After contact information, boldface your headline.
  • Dateline. The first sentence should include the city and release date.
  • Introduction. The first paragraph must attract the reader’s attention and convey vital message information.
  • Text. Your press release should emphasize your angle.
  • Summary. In the bottom-left corner of your last page, restate your product’s specs, underline a release date, and specify if the media may get a free sample or review copy. Trade exhibition attendees, include your booth number.

6. Strong headlines. The media will likely read your news release’s first paragraph. A headline should have only one sentence.

How to Distribute a Press Release

  1. Your text should explain:
  • Product name and summary.
  • Your product’s or company’s competitive edge.
  • Why the media should cover your product.
  • Your product’s availability.
  • Company positioning. Work it into the lead.
  • Quote when possible. An expert or direct user quotes boost credibility. 
  1. Highlight important information using bullets. This is helpful when describing product features or how something operates. It’ll speed up your press release and highlight key points.
  2. Format the release. Use 20-pound bond white or off-white 8-1/2 x 11 letterhead with 1-1/2 or double spacing. Print on only one side of the sheet.
  3. Create a mailing list. A focused mailing of 200 press releases is more successful than 2,000. Research your list. Local libraries have online media directories. Print and online media directories abound. Many directories include editorial explanations of the outlet’s information needs, such as new product brochures or press releases. Ask your local PRSSA branch for directories and software sellers. Update and add to your list before your following letter.
  4. Email or mail your press release. Faxing is time- and cost-intensive. Many editors and producers want to receive urgent faxes. If you know the editor’s email, consider emailing your press release.
  5. Set realistic expectations. For every 50 releases you send, two media should contact you. If a journalist contacts you, it doesn’t mean they’ll write about you or your business. If your release is professional and you cooperate with the editor or reporter who calls, your chances are improved.

Conclusion

Having a good media buying plan when choosing publications to post press releases on is important. PressReach can help you with that by offering services such as press release distribution, traffic/media buying to the press release, content syndication, and our own network that guarantees placements on 100+ websites. Instead of hoping investors stumble across your website and then click through to your news page, we put you in direct contact with them. Your press releases are more likely to get read, increasing your brand awareness.

Featured Image:  Megapixl © Asiandelight 

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About the author: Stephanie Bedard-Chateauneuf has over four years of experience writing financial content for various websites. Over the years, Stephanie has covered various industries, with a primary focus on consumer stocks, cannabis stocks, tech stocks, and personal finance. This stock lover likes to invest for the long-term. Stephanie has an MBA in finance.