Writing a good press release isn’t just about the facts. Press releases are important. While they’re intended to release important information and updates to the world, they require more than a bulleted list of facts and figures to be effective. This is where knowing how to write good copy comes in. Not everyone is a writer, but when your business needs a solid press release, you need to sharpen your informational and persuasive writing chops to have the most success. We have a few copywriting tips and tricks to help get beginners started.
Keep reading and take notes before writing your next press release.
While a press release may be drier than other forms of writing, using powerful language is an important strategy across all writing jobs.
Powerful language can include several things. The first is any language that invokes some kind of emotion or opinion, like power words. Your business did the best thing instead of a good thing, for example. Why be good when you can be the best?
You can also use descriptive and colorful language. Keep it to the point, but don’t be afraid to add in a few flourishes here and there for emphasis.
You only have so much space to grab people’s attention with a press release so make sure that you get the best aspects out of the way in a clear and concise manner before breaking everything down.
What are you trying to announce? Why is it important? Why should people be interested in your venture?
These are the impressive bits that you want readers to know about before they get bored or distracted and move onto the next piece.
As we mentioned, a press release is often a dry piece of writing. It doesn’t have to be bare-bones, though.
While you don’t want to distract from the important parts, you can add bits of your personality or brand image into the press release to hold the reader’s attention. This will vary depending on your industry, though.
Some industries do better with a “just the facts” approach while others benefit from a friendlier attitude. What’s been successful for you in the past?
Let’s face it: most people don’t have great attention spans. Your press release is going to be picked up by journalists and normal readers and you want them to spend more than just a moment with it.
Part of your hook is in the headline. Headline copywriting is harder than it seems. You need a title that explains what your release is about while also grabbing the reader’s attention. Take a look at popular articles on online news sites and see what catches your eye. Why did that happen?
The beginning paragraph also has to be strong if you want people to keep reading. Tell the reader what they need to know as quickly as possible and give them a reason to keep reading.
Again, people have poor attention spans. You might have a lot to say about the topic: it’s yours and you know a lot about it. The average reader, however, won’t spend a few minutes reading your press release and the average journalist won’t be interested in reporting on something that’s too long.
The ideal length of press releases varies depending on who you ask. Some experts suggest that you don’t go over 400 words while others believe that anything below two pages should be fine.
Again, this will depend on your industry. Some concepts are harder to make concise.
Part of avoiding excessive wordiness is keeping your press release as simple as possible.
We get it. You’re an expert in your field and you’re excited about what you’re doing. Other people aren’t experts and they don’t want to hear about technical jargon. They want to know what’s happening in a brief and accessible piece of writing.
Remember that you’re writing to the average person and journalists, not only industry professionals. You want journalists to be able to break down your information and you want readers to be able to process it without excessive research.
This should go without saying, but your press release should be error-free. It’s important if you want it to look professional.
You might think that you’re the perfect writer and editor, but everyone makes mistakes. It’s essential to have someone else look over your work before you submit it for publication.
Once it’s published it’s out of your hands. Don’t let foolish errors get in the way of your press release success.
Remember when we mentioned that you should keep your press release short and simple? Avoiding extra fluff will help with this.
Fluff is anything that’s non-essential for the task at hand. While you have some wiggle room for expressive language or explanations, you should avoid anything that goes into excessive and irrelevant anecdotes or takes up excessive space.
This is how you lose readers. They don’t want to read a page of text that doesn’t say anything important.
Not enough press release writers take advantage of emotional appeals. In reality, these appeals are what keep people reading and interested in your press release. They also help to keep your press release in your readers’ heads for longer.
Use brief anecdotes to connect to the audience, and use metaphors to help them make their own connections. Emotional appeals are an effective persuasive technique. Use them.
Writing a press release isn’t like writing a report in school. It requires skill, nuance, and general copywriting know-how. Hopefully, these copywriting tips will help you make the next press release you right a fantastic one.
If you’re not confident in your writing ability and you need an effective press release, we want to help. We understand that not everyone has the time or ability to write for an audience. Let us handle the hard work for you.
Contact us to learn about how we can help or to chat with an editor today.