You are doing it all wrong…
Everyone has heard of a “press release.”
And what do most people do?
- They write a press release (most of the time it’s boring to read).
By the way, writing press releases that get read follow a specific formula.
It’s basic copyrighting.
But that’s not the focus of this case study.
- They email it off, (most of the time, cold, to hundreds of outlets.)
That’s called Spam.
And it’s not cool!
What do they get?
Crickets and tumbleweeds.
That’s very generous.
There are smarter ways of going about press releases and this case study will explore an example…
In this case study, I’ll show you how I was able to get a story published in a well-respected local print newspaper, in both print and online editions.
A client had recently changed leadership and one of the executives had been quoted in the outlet previously.
It was important to show stakeholders that the new direction the leadership planned on taking would be beneficial.
I pre-wrote a press release (simply as reference for myself to get clarity on the story and angle,) which I discuss shortly.
I emailed the same journalist who quoted the previous director and gave them a short story pitch.
The angle was important: simply saying that the story was “that the organisations leadership had changed,” would be an easy mistake to make.
That in itself is not news worth, it happens all the time.
The angle however, was the impact that the change of leadership was going to have, rather than the change of leadership.
This angle and story was important to the outlets readership.
I also mentioned that the story could be a good follow up to one of the executives who was already quoted.
Finally, I asked if the journalist was interested.
They were and they asked for more specific information to which I clarified details for them.
I also gave them my phone number and the pre-written press release (the one I had written as reference for myself to get clarity on the story and angle.)
I spoke with the journalist for about 30 minutes on the phone, giving them the full story, background and made another introduction to someone else who could give another perspective.
The journalist lined up a photo of the incoming and outgoing executives.
The story was published in both print and online editions where relevant stakeholders would see it.
The lesson here is sending a press release can work as long as it is at the appropriate time, which is rarely cold or at the first point of contact.
A simple example of how to write press release that get read.
The specifics are not important, so much as the principles behind them.
No need to copy it exactly, just see if you can use it as inspiration for something unique to your brand.
Approach the process in the right way.
And you’ll save everyone involved time.
You’ll all be better off for it.