How to write and send a brilliant press release

How to write and send a brilliant press release

Posted: Mon 11th Apr 2022

Nailing PR is key for many small businesses, but how do you write and send a killer press release to help build traction?

By following this nine-point plan, you’ll be sending out brilliant press releases and getting published in no time.

Here’s what you need to know:

1) Simplicity is key

No journalist wants to wade through the regurgitations of a thesaurus!

Be coherent, interesting and ensure the contents are fresh – why should a publication care about old news?

If you’re struggling, use the ‘Who, What, Where, When, How and Why’ framework with, crucially, your whole story summarised within that first paragraph.

2) Answer the question ‘so what?’

Put yourself in a journalist’s shoes and ask why you should care.

Many receive hundreds of these press releases every week, so there is plenty of competition for that valuable link.

Ensure the press release is relevant and tailored to the publication in question, as you ultimately want to provide value to its readers.

3) Include a quote

This could be from yourself, a colleague or even a client, but as with the above, relevance and usefulness is key.

Whether it’s a quote to add a personal touch or a testimony from a third party, these are often a nice addition.

4) Don’t forget a call to action

This is crucially important. 

You must tell the reader what to do next! There’s no use blowing them away with your press release and then just…disappearing.

Do you want people to visit your website? Attend an event? Including a CTA will act as a useful nudge.

5) Add high-quality photos along with captions

There is nothing worse for an editor than receiving a press release with poor quality images; it’ll reduce your chances of being published massively.

Attach a good selection of images - both in portrait and landscape if you’re hoping to be published online and in print.

This can be done either via email attachment or through a sharing link. Captions should be included within a ‘Notes to editor’ message at the bottom of the press release.

6) Send to a named person

Ideally, you’ll be sending your press release out to a known journalist with whom you’ve already built a relationship.

At the very least, do your research into who the best recipient is at each publication. This way, there’s at least some personal aspect to your message, which can never hurt.

7) Make sure the subject line is clear

Your email’s subject line could make or break the success of your press release!

It should be succinct, attention-grabbing and encapsulate the essence of your story as efficiently as possible.

8) Don’t hassle

Some will disagree with this, but overly hassling a journalist after firing off a press release is not a good idea.

Sure, follow up once if you don’t hear back, but if you start to become a pest that’s a sure-fire way to burn bridges for any future collaboration that may be on the table.

9) Be available

Finally, don’t jet off on a far-flung holiday the day after sending out a bunch of press releases (and if you do, ensure you have access to Zoom at the very least!).

Journalists may want to come back at you with follow-up questions or, if they’re really impressed, a full interview in order to showcase your brilliance.

Your press release should provide a journalist with all they need to crack on with the story, but there’s always the possibility of a follow-up, so bear that in mind.

Looking for a PR expert to guide you further through this competitive world? Find and match with an adviser on Enterprise Nation today and receive expert advice.  

Enterprise Nation has helped thousands of people start and grow their businesses. Led by founder, Emma Jones CBE, Enterprise Nation connects you to the resources and expertise to help you succeed.

Get business support right to your inbox

Subscribe to our newsletter to receive business tips, learn about new funding programmes, join upcoming events, take e-learning courses, and more.