8 Elements that Make A Great Press Release

Make a great press release

A great press release can make or break your company’s image. Get it right, and you’ll be on the front page of every major newspaper. Get it wrong, and you’ll be laughed out of the industry. So it is quite obvious that you should learn the elements that make a great press release.

In fact,  a great press release is essential to the success of any business. It is one of the most critical tools in a public relations pro’s arsenal. It is also a news story about your company or organization that is distributed to media outlets to gain publicity.

While there are no hard and fast rules for what exact characteristics make a great press release, certain elements should be included to make yours stand out from the rest.

Here are the eight essential elements that make a great press release:

  • Make a good headline to capture attention

The headline is the first part your audience comes across. It should be catchy and straight to the point. Think of it as a headline for a news story. The better the headline, the more likely people will read your press release.

Include all the essential information that will make a great press release in the headline. The headline should be about any one or more of the following: who, what, when, where, and why of your story. This is called the “five Ws.” 

The 5Ws should be added in order of importance so that if someone only reads the headline and the first paragraph, they will still know everything they need to know about your story. Remember to keep the headline short and sweet. A good headline is crucial to make a great press release

  • Include dateline

A dateline is like a little flag that tells the reader, “This is where I’m writing from.” It’s generally one of the first things people see in a press release, and it’s essential to get it right, to make a great press release. 

The dateline should always include the city or state where the press release originates and, in most cases, the date. If the release is about an event that happened in the past, for example, be sure to include the date.

For national stories, you can just include the city. And if you’re writing from outside the country, you can just list the city and country. For instance, a story with a dateline of “New York, March 3” is likely to be seen as more newsworthy than a story with a dateline of “Anytown, USA, sometime in the future.” In addition, the dateline can also help to add a sense of urgency to a story and thus make a great press release.

  • Use quotes sparingly

Quotes create a form of credibility for your press release. It adds a sense of authenticity to your story. However, too many quotes can make your press release seem like an advertorial. Use them sparingly and only if they add something to your story.

If you are writing a press release to make announcements, you can use quotes from the company’s CEO or other high-ranking officials. It makes your press release more relatable and personal and therefore help you make a great press release.

  • Ensure your press release is newsworthy

Your press release should be newsworthy. Otherwise, it will get lost in the shuffle. Media outlets receive hundreds of press releases daily, so make sure yours is exciting and attention-grabbing.

There are a few things that make a great press release and newsworthy:

  • Timeliness: Is your story timely? If it is, then it has a higher chance of being picked up by the media.
  • Relevance: Is your story relevant to current events or trends? If it is, then it is more likely to be of interest to the public.
  • Human Interest: Does your story have a human element to it? Stories with a human interest angle are more likely to be picked up by the media.
  • Uniqueness: Is your story unique? If so, then it will pique the interest of reporters and editors.
  • Include facts and figures in your press release

A press release is no place for fiction. To get the attention of reporters and editors, you need to include hard-hitting facts and figures that showcase the significance of your story. 

Even if your release is about a light-hearted topic, including concrete data will give it an air of credibility. After all, journalists are always looking for reliable data to back up their stories. And if you can provide them with a few well-chosen numbers, you’re more likely to get their attention. 

Of course, there’s a fine line between providing helpful context and overloading your press release with uninteresting details. So be sure to select only the most relevant statistics and present them in a way that’s easy for readers to digest. A little bit of data can go a long way towards making your press release newsworthy – just don’t forget to add a dash of personality.

  • Provide your contact information

If you’re sending out a press release, there’s one thing you don’t want to forget: your contact information! After all, what’s the point of sending out a press release if journalists can’t get in touch with you? 

Including your contact information at the top of the page is advisable. To make it easy for reporters to contact you, include your name, and contact information, such as a phone number, email address, and website.

Most importantly, make sure to double-check your contact information before you hit the “send” button – there’s nothing more embarrassing than sending out a press release with the wrong email address. So, to ensure you are doing everything correctly to make a great press release, double check the contact information.

  • Include a boilerplate

A boilerplate is a short, standard paragraph containing information about your company or organization. It is typically placed at the end of a press release and includes basic facts like your company’s history, mission statement, or essential business information.

Think of it as an “about us” section for your press release. This part can help give journalists additional context about your story. And if you’re targeting reporters who are unfamiliar with your company, a boilerplate can be a great way to provide them with some background information.

Here are some tips on writing an effective boilerplate:

  • Keep it brief: A boilerplate should be no more than a few sentences long.
  • Use simple language: Avoid jargon and industry-specific terms.
  • Include key information: Include your company’s name, website, and contact information.
  • Avoid excessive self-promotion: A boilerplate is not the place to brag about your company. Instead, focus on giving reporters the facts.
  • Proofread your press release before sending it out

There’s nothing worse than sending out a press release full of typos and grammatical errors. For one thing, it makes you look unprofessional. But more importantly, it can change the meaning of what you’re trying to say – which can be a disaster if you promote your business. 

Take the time to proofread your press release carefully. A few minutes spent checking for errors can make all the difference in how your release is received. And who knows? You might even find a typo or two that you can have a good laugh about later.

Final Thoughts:  Elements of a great press release

A great press release is one that is full of hard-hitting facts and figures, provides  insightful context and background information, includes contact information, and is free of typos and grammatical errors. While there’s no one formula for writing a great press release, following these tips will help you get started. 

If you are looking to write and distribute your press release, Press Reach is here to help. Our platform makes it easy to get your press release in front of journalists and influencers, so you can get the coverage you deserve. Contact Press Reach today to learn more.

Featured Image:  Megapixl © Adiruch 

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About the author: Saheed Salami is a technical writer and content marketer who has worked with venture capitalists, crypto exchanges, and blockchain companies across the Middle East, the United States, the UK, and Europe. He has a deep understanding of how blockchain technology works and is passionate about helping others understand it too. He is known for his wit, humor, and ability to digest complex information. When he's not writing or marketing, Saheed enjoys traveling and playing video games with his xoxo.