Do you have a somewhat vague understanding about the purpose and value of a press release? Have you ever thought to yourself that your business is too small for press releases and only large businesses use press releases? Moreover, how, when, and why would you write a press release and who should you disseminate it to?
If you own a business, chances are you have had something newsworthy to share with the public you serve at some point. Your options to share this information might include a paid ad, but oftentimes a paid ad will not suffice in covering the information you need to share (without losing the message with overcrowding and too much copy). Moreover, why should you have to pay to share something newsworthy and chance losing some of the details that the public needs to know (due to limited ad space) when you could possibly obtain media coverage for free?
Press releases are a tried and true practice of disseminating your business’s announcement while staying within budget. If your announcement is newsworthy, well-written and follow the below guidelines, you should see an increase in coverage of your business especially as your media relations develop. If you effectively communicate with your news sources, those relationships will build with time (more on that towards the end).
What is a Press Release, Anyway?
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a press release is an official statement that gives information to newspapers, magazines, television news programs, and radio stations. However, today this official statement (written or recorded) is not limited to the distribution of print media, but is issued to the digital media, social media, and beyond. A press release can also be referred to as a press statement or news release.
More importantly, a press release should be newsworthy to the audience of the publication you are sending it to. What is newsworthy to your business personally might not be newsworthy to the public or the media source you intend it for, so make sure you remain objective in determining the need for a press release.