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Try to give a good reason for why a reporter in Pittsburgh would want to cover you: Is one of your band mates from the area? Did you have a particularly memorable experience the last time you visited? Maybe you’ve already been reviewed by a given writer and want to invite them to hear your new songs. Whatever the case, have a template that can be revised with each new recipient. Otherwise, your carefully crafted press release is likely to end up in a spam folder, or worse, the trash. 
Give journalists some time to craft a story around your press release by sending it to them — under embargo — the day before it officially goes live. (FYI under embargo just means they aren’t allowed to share the information in the press release until the time you specify.)
A press release is written in different ways depending on the situation. However, if we consider a standard press release template, it begins with the name of the company, their contact number and email address of the person who it. Also, the press release is printed on the letterhead of the company which must have the company’s slogan along with the above mentioned particulars.
The final paragraph in your press release should be the boilerplate, which presents information about your company and what it does. This should be a factual description, and it can be used repeatedly in different press releases.
When choosing a topic for your press release, ask yourself a few questions: is this topic newsworthy? Do people want or need to know about this topic? Is a press release the ideal medium to share this information? If your answer to these questions is YES, you can begin writing.
Press releases typically end with a short description of the company or organization that’s issuing the release, along with a call to action. The call to action could be to participate in the event being promoted, to take a test drive of the product, or simply to find out more by contacting the author of the press release [source: PR Leap Blog].
Once you’re ready to launch, check out our comparison of the top press release distribution services for small businesses. While results, by nature, are unpredictable, we found eReleases to be the most promising. Their distribution network includes Associated Press, PR Newswire and their own network of journalists and bloggers. Click here to check it out.
Keep phone calls to a minimum. Journalists are busier than ever and typically have little to no time to hear your pitch over the phone. No journalist ever wants to hear: “Did you read my press release?” If you write a clever, succinct, topical pitch, that will hopefully generate a positive response from the media.
Well, PR.com has articles on both topics in their articles database. While some of the content is a bit outdated, it is another free offering from their “one-stop shop” for business services and press release distribution tools.
It was always great working with eReleases. They constantly run specials rewarding companies that use them often. Their staff is always great to work with, helpful and very knowledgeable. I have worked with lots of PR distribution companies and eReleases is by far my favorite.
Headlines written in bold! A bold headline also typically uses a larger font size than the body copy. Conventional press release headlines use the present tense and exclude a and the, as well as forms of the verb to be in certain contexts.
Every day is a holiday! It really is. Do a quick search online and identify “holidays” that make sense for your business. An Italian restaurant may list out National Pizza Day (February 9), National Pasta Day (October 17) and National Lasagna Day (July 29). Next, create fun and engaging promotions around the holiday. For example, on National Pizza Day, invite kids in to make their own pizza.
With the help of the Minnesota Twins Community Fund, the Plymouth Wayzata Youth Softball Association will be supplying their female athletes with functional equipment that will enhance the safety and experience for over 300 individuals. – March 03, 2018 – Plymouth Wayzata Youth Softball Association
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Effective? Yes, this helped my book to be picked up by bookstores and websites from here to Russia, China, Australia, etc. By including a description of the book in the press release, we were able to get people interested in the novel. I’m even in my local Barnes & Noble. It was a great way for me to debut my writing and get out there in the publishing world!
Hi Keith, thank you for the comment. This is all great insight and I appreciate you taking the time to post it here. Because both you and Craig posted similar comments, I want to make sure I clarify the intention of this post. This post is meant as a guide for how to correctly format a press release for general distribution using AP Style guidelines and other best practices. It is not meant to provide tips for how to contact writers. As you allude to in your post, and as I preach on my site, sending a template-driven message to every journalist you reach out to, is not a good idea. Each message you send should be personalized and tailored to the interests of that journalist’s audience. In regards to what format you use for your press release. Journalists have their preferences as to which format they like to receive press releases in. I’ve worked with writers that span the gamut on this. That said, I think your points about copying and pasting the text into the body of your email over a attaching a Word document are completely valid. When I recommended Word in the previous comment, I was speaking to the specific context of general distribution, i.e., when you submit your press release to sites like Games Press. (Games Press requests Word document attachments as its preferred method to receive press releases in it’s submission instructions to avoid running into copying and pasting issues: http://www.gamespress.com/about_howtosubmit.asp). Looking back on my comment, I think I could have been way clearer though 🙂 Apologies for that. Again, I appreciate both your and Craig’s input here. It’s great to hear this feedback straight from journalists.