06 Oct Press Release Questions
Interestingly, whenever I speak on PR at a workshop or conference the same questions about press releases come up again and again. So, I thought I would answer a few of the most popular queries about press releases here.
1. How long should a press release be?
Ideally, I would say a Page of A4 in perhaps a 11 point font, but of course that varies from typeface to typeface, and if you include photos it will end up being longer. If it is much shorter than that, you are probably missing out on the opportunity to say something. If it is much longer that can sometimes work as a way of standing out, especially if your photos are great or you are including lots of quotes or bullet points to break the text up, but I wouldn’t do that on a regular basis.
2. What’s the best way to raise the odds of a journalist reading my release?
- Create a compelling headline
- Send it to them personally and not as a mass mailout.
- Do your reserach and make sure the journalist is interested in this type of material
3. How often should I send a press release?
As often as you can! Corporates may be putting one or more out a week. As an entrepreneur or small business, you should be putting a press release out at least once a month. Persistence and consistence is key in any PR campaign.
4. Do I need to follow up a press release?
Ideally, yes. If you can pick up the phone and follow up the release 2-3 days later you will find it all the more effective. Plus, if someone hasn’t got your release or hasn’t read it yet, it is a perfect time to send another and bring it it their attention. The key to good PR follow up is not avoid asking “did you get my press release” and instead ask them if they would like an article on the subject you contacted them about/to review any products/come along to the event. As a rule of thumb, having something to offer the journalist is ideal and gives you a valid reason to pick up the phone.
5. What is the best way to learn how to write a press release?
I cover how to write a press release in my book, Do Your Own PR, for under a tenner. Alternatively, if you’d like a more personal, one to one approach, we have a press release writing course in our PR gym here
Finally, do remember a press release should be able news, not pushy sales.