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Jen Williams

How To Craft A Press Release That Will Get Your Story Heard

18th Aug 2017 Digital PR 4 minutes to read

How To Craft A Press Release That Will Get Your Story Heard

When your business has something newsworthy to communicate to the media, a press release is an effective way to communicate this. Press releases are an effective way of controlling how a brand’s message is being communicated. This post provides some great ideas on how to write a compelling press release.

When To Publish A Press Release

Press releases are a strong communication tool and can be put out to press at numerous points within your brand’s calendar.

Events That Could Be Worthy Of A Press Release

  • Your business’s reaction to a key piece of industry news or research
  • The launch of a new business, product or brand
  • A successfully concluded business deal, contract or partnership
  • Unexpectedly impressive quarterly or end-of-year financials
  • A high-profile staff/management hiring or retirement

A press release is specific to your business; it’s not a general news item. Of course, you can base it on something external, such as a newly published report, but you need to refer back to how it impacts your business in order to build relevance.

The Fundamentals

In learning how to write a press release, there are some basic ‘rules’ to follow. Indeed, look at any press release example, sample or format and you’ll see that they follow a simple structure, which often includes the following key elements.


This should be short and to the point, covering the main thrust of the story. Vast numbers of press releases are circulated every day, so you need to make sure that yours immediately grabs the attention of the reader. However, unless you’re specifically targeting the tabloid media or want to add a bit of shock value, keep it professional. Use title case to make your headline stand out even more, but don’t use all capitals.

Opening paragraph

This is where the five Ws come in! News stories must tell the reader who the story concerns, what happened, why it happened, where it happened and when it happened. These details should be included in a short opening paragraph that serves as a summary of the content.


This is an opportunity to go into more detail. However, don’t waffle on unnecessarily. Include relevant details that add information and depth, but remember to stay on topic.


It’s a good idea to insert one or two quotes from spokespeople within your organisation reacting to the news. These quotes might be used in any article written by a journalist or blogger, so this is your chance to publish a well thought-out, polished quote that reaches a wide audience. Remember to correctly attribute the quotes to the relevant spokespeople within your organisation.


This is a paragraph of standard text that you can insert into any press release. It’s simply a short ‘about us’ section letting readers know a little about your business. It adds context and offers an editor or journalist more information about your brand and company history.

Contact information

Don’t forget to include relevant contact information at the bottom of the press release. If you expect significant media interest, you might consider funnelling queries through a single company contact. You should also indicate whether you’re happy to receive interview requests.


Once you’ve crafted your press release, you need to distribute it to the media. The aim is for your release to be picked up by media outlets, bloggers and freelance journalists who want to follow up on the story. As such, you might consider drafting several versions of your press release targeting different audiences. Of course, you should also post your press release on your website and promote it through your social media channels.

Final Thoughts

We’ll leave you with a few press release tips to consider.

  • Don’t forget to put a date on your press release: if you send it out ahead of a launch or announcement, clearly state that it’s embargoed until a specific time to avoid unwanted early leaks of important news
  • Don’t be overly promotional: the news is what media outlets will write about, not ‘corporate puff’
  • Keep it short and concise: busy journalists and editors just don’t have time to wade through a lengthy press release to dig out the story
  • Make it relevant: Trade press journalists might be much more interested in business stats and figures, whereas the consumer press might be more interested in the human angle/case studies of the story. So, remember to angle your press release to be relevant to the media that you’re targeting, which may mean writing two slightly different versions
  • Don’t blanket your press releases: you might be tempted to shout about every positive event that happens in your business but ask yourself, is it really newsworthy? For example, a staff birthday or work anniversary is not necessarily news, unless someone’s celebrating a rare milestone
  • Consider hiring a professional: if you don’t have in-house copywriting, journalism or PR expertise, think about bringing in some help to ensure that you get your message out in the right way

An effective press release can be a valuable way to build your brand image and promote your business. However, it’s important that you adhere to some basic principles to ensure that your press release generates positive interest and traction.

Find more helpful tips on how to boost your brand on our Digital PR page.

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Jen Williams

Jen is our token shorty. She’s a sucker for an old movie but she’s young at heart, so young in fact she got asked for ID when buying crimping scissors. She’s a table tennis fanatic and even used to play for her county. Trust us, we didn’t realise there were table tennis leagues either but now we want to set one up over our desks to test how good she is.

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