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Press Releases are written forms of communication that give reporters the facts and supporting details of a particular story or event.

How do you think news networks get so much information so quickly?

A typical reporter will read dozens of press releases each day and so the more interesting the story and relevant to current events, the more likely they will put it into print.

Now usually reporters won't write your release word-for-word. Rather they write their story based on what's in your release and notate quotes accordingly. Sometimes the reporter may follow up with you on a particular release for more details and quotes to add to their story, so, don't forget to leave a cell phone number as reporters tend to call all hours of the day not necessarily conducive to your schedule.

Digression: Forbes magazine once called me for a quote while I was at a little league game at 7:30 at night. Good thing they had my cell phone as their deadline was that night.

Follow these steps to write an effective Press Release:

  1. Write an ultra-concise headline that will grab the attention of the reporter. Also, try to incorporate the name of your business. Example: "Dean Spentworth: New firm specializing in Family Law in Haddonfield"
  2. Write the press release body. The lead, or first sentence, should grab the reader and say concisely what is happening. The next 1-2 sentences then expand upon the lead. Avoid long sentences, fancy lingo, jargon, and repetition. Report the fact: events, products, services, people, targets, goals, plans, projects. Try to provide maximum use of concrete facts.
  3. Don't forget whenever you write to communicate the who, what, where, when, why and how.
  4. Include your company name and website address.
  5. Signal the end of the press release with three # symbols, centered directly underneath the last line of the release. This is the method journalists use and so you must too.

Don't compete — DOMINATE.


Matt Steffen

"Don't compete -- DOMINATE!"

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Matt Steffen was Listed by Forbes as the #1 Marketing Consultant Who Avoids the B.S.