By writing an eye-catching press release. Do it right – you will get the coverage of your [INSERT YOUR EVENT/PRODUCT/COMPANY], do it wrong – your unrewarded efforts would go straight to the recycle bin.
How to pitch your idea to a journalist
I know it is easier to say rather than actually do this. I feel your pain because I have been through the same problem. So bear with me – I will share some of the tips that worked well for me.
What does a journalist do? A progressive journalist is a person who wants to be the first in publishing the latest news. All journalists have to badger through tons of information, and press releases is one of the sure ways to reach them out. This is a reason why they are called “Press Releases”. And this is also your time to stand out and distinguish your event product or company you want to get a public exposure for.
To get a journalist’s attention, here are the rules for writing a memorable press release?
1. Start with an attention-grabbing title
It should be short, concise and up to the point. As a rule of thumb, it is better to write the title after you are done with the main text. The purpose of a headline is to get your readers – including journalists – hooked.
2. Write such a release as you wish it to appear in the news
While drafting your press release, realize that a journalist who will receive it has a very limited time for searching and reading more information about your service, product or a company. More often than not, a journalist writes an article based on what s/he reads. So consider your press release as journalist’s #1 source of info about what you offer.
3. The first paragraph must describe the bottom line.
The easiest and guaranteed way to make sure your first paragraph conveys the message is to answer the four questions: “Who?”, “What?”, “When?” and “Why?”.
4. The next 3-4 paragraphs should include facts.
Mention features of your product or service; the reason of appearance, the predictable growth and profit, the importance of a service/product/company in a current market.
5. Extra bonus – a direct speech.
You can add a comment in the form of a direct speech (a.k.a. “quotations”) of a chief of the company or one of its representatives.
6. The last paragraph should have your company summary.
Describe its activities, the main stages of development, achievements and awards. Feel free to add some more data that you would consider impressive or interesting.
7. Use the letterhead and add the contact information.
Leave a reference of a contact person responsible for communication with journalists. Usually these people are press secretaries or heads of PR.
8. Proof-check the content and make sure to write as concise as possible.
These are the most common rules, which you need to know while creating an informative product for a journalist. Remember that you can’t made the media to issue a press release, but you can create such a sharp text that the media will publish it immediately. And actually this is a task at your hand.
How did you find these tips? Have you written press releases before? What where the troubles your had to deal with? Let us know in the comment section below, and we will update the article with additional tips and tricks.