You are launching a new tech startup or any business, and you want the world to know about that; what’s the best way to do that? You are reading this article, so you already know press release is your answer. But there are some questions, are all press releases publish-worthy? Why should a newspaper publish about a business no one know about?
They know today’s unknown startup may someday shift the industry and impact millions of people. Do you believe your business may ultimately impact the industry? I’m guessing yes; now it’s time to make people, and most importantly, the editor, thinks the same thing.
For that, you need to write a killer press release, and in this article, we will outline how you can write a publish-worthy press release about launching your startup, provide you with a free template, and last but not least, include a few real-world examples of startup press releases.
Getting Started: Press Release Basics
Before we dive deep into this topic, let’s get to know what press releases are and why companies or startups publish press releases.
What Is A Press Release?
A press release, also known as a news release, is an official statement or communication issued by a business, organization, or individual to the media for the purpose of announcing major events, news, or developments.
The Goal Of A Press Release
The main purpose of a press release is to generate news coverage and make people aware of an event or piece of news that a company, organization, or person wants to spread the word about. Some of the specific goals of a press release could be:
Announcing a new product, service, or initiative: The press release can help build excitement and generate interest in the new offering.
Highlighting a significant achievement: A press release can help successfully showcase a company’s success or achievement, such as receiving recognition or winning an award.
Responding to a crisis or issue: Companies are often caught in conflicting situations.In such a crisis or controversy, a press release can help a company or organization provide an official statement or response.
Promoting an event: A press release can help generate attendance and interest in an upcoming event, such as a conference, fundraiser, or launch party.
Overall, the goal of a press release is to communicate news or information to the public or target audience.
Understanding The Structure [And The Free Press Release Template]
A press release’s structure is already established. For years, everyone has been following the structure. You don’t have to be particularly imaginative while drafting a press release; simply stick to the pre-defined structure. If not, the journalists may send it back to be revised or even reject your press release.
Here are the six fundamental parts most press releases includes –
Your headlines should attract readers’ attention and briefly explain the release’s main topic. So, a headline needs to be short, accurate, and to the point.
The first paragraph of the press release. It should include the most significant details about the announcement. You need to answer the “Five W’s” of Who, What, When, Where, and Why in summary.
Date and location –
You need to include the date and location of the announcement in this section. You can also include the name of your company here.
The press release’s body elaborates on the summary’s key points. You provide additional details, quotes, and relevant information about the announcement in the body of the press release.
The Boilerplate is just like the about us section, where you summarize your company’s activities, such as the company’s history, mission, achievements, etc.
You need to end the press media you submitted to the press release with “###” in the center at the bottom to prevent unnecessary text from being published.
These are the basics of the press release structure. If you want to know more, Download our press release template.
Writing The Startup Press Release
Press releases let your organization manage its story and social media and enhance SEO. You can find writing a press release intimidating because they are tricky to write, but the truth is you can create a successful press release with practice. This section will help you to identify some common mistakes to avoid and some tips to adopt while writing your press release.
Common Mistakes To Avoid
One of the most common mistakes you can make while writing a press release is not providing a newsworthy perspective. Without a newsworthy angle, the media won’t cover your press release.
Not considering SEO while preparing the press release. If you don’t keep track of your SEO and keywords, you won’t be able to reach the correct audience.
Another common mistake you can often make is overfilling news releases with unnecessary information. Journalists appreciate info without buzzwords and jargon.
Not following the Associated Press (AP) style or format while writing the press release is another mistake you can make. When a journalist receives an unfamiliar writing style, he/she may become confused and not publish your press release.
A common mistake you can make is not adding a clearly stated call to action and a helpful link in your press release to guide your targeted audience to the next step.
Never release if you’re unsure about the timing. If the timing is wrong, you can receive negative press, hurting your startup reputation.
Some Tips To Adopt
Your title should be catchy and reflect the point of your story since the average reporter will scan the headline and decide whether or not to publish it, and the reader will decide whether or not to read it.
Include quotes and multimedia in your press release. Quotes will add credibility to your press release, and multimedia will improve your audience’s engagement.
Make sure you promote the press release on your channels like the website Facebook, Linkedin, twitter, etc. It will increase the visibility of your press release.
Write your press release in a storytelling way and try to avoid a promotional and advertisement tone. Most journalists don’t prefer these types of tones in writing. Add facts to create authenticity to your story.
Make sure you proofread and edit carefully before submitting your press release for distribution. Mistakes like typos, poor grammar, and missing punctuation can make your release look unprofessional.
It’s essential to tailor your message of the press release to the interests and needs of your target audience, whether it’s potential customers, investors, or the media.
You can now utilize these tips to create your press release and go to the next phase, which is to develop a pitch for your press release in order to impress the journalists and get press coverage. Pitching itself is an extended topic. I will just give you a step-by-step process here.
Part Four: Pitching The Press Release
Your proposal makes or breaks a press release. Your pitch must stand out from the dozens of emails reporters receive daily. As Charles Fleming, Editor of Company Town, Los Angeles Times, said-
“ I receive more than 500 emails a day. An astonishing number of them are pitching topics that neither I nor my staff has ever covered — sent by people who’ve either never read our publication, or never read our coverage, or noticed what bylines go with what stories. I edit Company Town, which covers the business side of the entertainment industry. We are not interested in stories about developments in dental hygiene.”
Here are some steps for you to follow so that you can get noticed by journalists and gain the visibility you want.
Step 1: Is your press release newsworthy?
The first thing you need to do for any press release is to find out if your press release is newsworthy or not. Because the media won’t cover unimportant news, it will become a waste of resources for your company. Also, too many unnewsworthy press releases can harm your company’s reputation. So, before releasing a press release, you can ask yourself the following questions to assess your announcement’s newsworthiness.
Does it make any difference?Your announcement must be impactful and meaningful to the community or industry to be considered newsworthy.
Is the timing appropriate for my press release? You need to consider whether the announcement is timely or not. If the news is already outdated or too far in the future, it may be best to hold off.
Will it be noticed? Journalists receive many press releases daily, so ensure that your press release is interesting and newsworthy to capture their attention.
Is your press release interesting? Before sending out your press release, consider whether it will interest your industry and those outside it.
Would you take the time to read it or share it? Ask yourself if you would read or share your press release to a friend about a different company to judge its newsworthiness.
Step 2: Target the right reporter and make a list:
You’ve cleared the first step – your press release is newsworthy! The next step is to ensure that it reaches the right reporter. Research and make a targeted list of reliable and relevant reporters and media outlets who usually cover the issue that you’re pitching. You can find the targeted reporters by researching their interests, needs, and audiences, reading their past stories, and following their social accounts.
Step 3: Write a perfect personalized pitch:
The 3rd step is the most important one. To write a convincing pitch, you need to start by identifying a simple and exciting topic. Analyze the pitch topic from different perspectives and make it relevant to the reporter’s past or recent work. And then, write the perfect informative but brief pitch that includes “Five W” (who, what, when, where, and why). You can also review the pitch by a third party.
Step 4: Write an email to the journalist:
It’s time to impress your journalist- personalize the email by addressing the journalist’s name and showing an understanding of their media outlet and writing style. Don’t forget to add a concise and captivating subject line that focuses on the most interesting part of your story. This will increase the likelihood of your email being opened.
Step 5: Send the email timely:
It is critical not only to write a catchy email but also to send the email timely to the journalist as some content is only “newsworthy” for a limited period of time. Also, most reporters need a day to a week to write a story; you should email your pitch well in advance. As you know, journalist receives tons of emails, so make sure you follow up with the journalist after sending the pitch.
Moving Forward: Steps After A Successful Press Release
Congratulations! You have just finished writing and pitching your press release. You might be wondering what to do next. We suggest you take these several steps to properly optimize the effect of the hard work you have done while pitching the press release.
First, you need to monitor the reaction to the press release. This will give you a good idea of its overall success and help you determine possible next steps.
Once you’ve measured the impact of your press release, be sure to thank the people who covered it. Building relationships with reporters and journalists is critical to your future success, so take the time to build those relationships.
Share your press releases on social media and engage with your followers to increase awareness and reach. Not only will this help you connect with potential customers, but it will also allow you to measure the effectiveness of your press release based on website traffic, social media engagement, and media coverage.
If your press release includes a call to action, don’t be afraid to reach out to those who respond. This can help you convert potential customers or supporters into loyal customers or supporters.
Need Inspirations? Here Is A Few Press Release Example For New Business
Use the information you receive to plan your next press release or campaign. If you evaluate the results and feedback, you will be able to create a more successful communication strategy in the future. You can also take some inspiration from real-life examples, just like samples below.
LegalZoom & Wix:
In this press release, LegalZoom and Wix announce their industry relationship and aspirations. It works because journalists have the information and resources to cover the cooperation. However, using quotes and understanding how brand representatives view this connection might be helpful.
NASA’s announcement has all the bells and whistles to make the news item fascinating. Before reading the title, readers are drawn in by a high-resolution image on top. The release’s feel-good news is that a schoolchild, Alexander Mather, named NASA’s next Mars Rover. Finally, call-to-action (CTA) links let journalists follow the story, learn about the Mars Rover, and learn about upcoming events.
Limoges Jewelry’s new collection press release begins with a sensational sentence. The emotional issue of postponed marriages during the pandemic driving demand for cheap wedding jewelry is newsworthy. This wedding collection is valuable and timely, so journalists can cover it right away.
This Standard Process press release promptly provides the “five W” who, what, when, why, and how of the news item. By associating its brand with a solution to a major societal issue, the corporation has long shown why people should care about the cause. The press statement indicates that they contributed 67,000 whole-food meals to local food banks.
Zoom’s Keybase purchase press announcement is one response to security concerns raised by its mass adoption during the COVID-19 outbreak. As part of a crisis communications plan, the press release’s format and contents were carefully chosen. Zoom security news release. It performs a good job of educating new stakeholders about its commitment to software security and giving opportunities to obtain updates. It also details Zoom’s next steps.
Press Release FAQs: Read This to Clear Up Any Confusion You Have
The concept of a press release is quite simple, and if you follow our steps, you’ll be able to write a winning one too. However, there are a few things that can cause confusion or cause you to mess up this momentous event. Here are some answers to help you keep ahead of the game and clear up any confusion.
What is the first thing I need to decide?
The first thing you must decide is your goal for your PR because the timing, content, and distribution of a press release differ on it.
When should I send out a press release?
Yes, any newsworthy company event announcements can be conveyed to the public via press releases. That includes startup launches, ensuring funding, new product or service launches, company achievement, etc.
Is my news press worthy?
When it comes to the public relations industry, the main ingredient is producing newsworthy campaigns that reach a large number of people. You can check if your news includes at least two or three following points.
1. Do your audience care about the announcement? 2. Is it a success story? 3. Can your story surprise your audience? 4. No one is interested in old news, so is it a new one? 5. Does your news have a future impact? 6. Is your news relevant? 7. Is the news different in some way? 8. How revolutionary would you say your story is?
Who should I target with my PR?
Don’t send every release to every journalist. You’ll be blackballed and spammed. Send company news like hirings, mergers, and acquisitions to business editors and reporters. Writers and editors who cover related topics should be sent human interest articles. Send stock news to investment and stock market editors and reporters.
When you should start the initiative?
If possible, give journalists at least two weeks before an event to write up their coverage. If not possible, at least try to provide the editors with three to five days’ notice to assign someone to your story.
For how long should I write a press release?
You can keep it to roughly a page using standard font size and margins, and try not to ramble (400 to 500 words). In general, you’ve written too much once you’ve reached two pages. The document needs to be brief because a journalist may only give it 30 seconds of attention before moving on.
Should I seek outside help?
Yes, you should; an outside expert may be able to see public relations prospects in a completely new light. Hopefully, this section helped you untangle some essential press release riddles. It’s time to understand the structure of a press release.
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