After months of planning and preparation, it’s time to launch your new product. A critical element of any product launch is designing a marketing campaign to communicate its features and benefits to your target audiences and key influencers. One tactic that must be part of a marketing campaign launch is a press release. But before you make your first keystroke, consider these tips to help improve your chances of the press release earning some ink.
Content, Content, Content
A press release is written communication aimed at members of the press that announces something newsworthy or of value. The goal is to gain favorable coverage and garner third-party credibility for your product. To do that, the content needs to drive the press release. Content is extremely important; for this reason, the message should be tightly written and straight to the point. If you’re announcing a new cereal or beverage, don’t spend the first two paragraphs setting the stage; get to the point of the press release in your opening paragraph. As you write the press release, put yourself in the role of editor. Ask key questions, such as “Why should I care?” If you remember that as you write, you’ll be in good shape.
Stick to the facts
Your target audience will want to know specifics about your new product. Be sure to include distinguishing facts that make your product different from competing products. Make this information apparent in the press release by listing facts in bullet form so it’s easy for the press to find; don’t bury it within a paragraph. Also, avoid using flowering or promotional adjectives such as greatest, best, superior, premier etc. in describing your product. Those words will be removed by editors nearly every time. Let the features, benefits and facts drive the press release.
Engaging the press
If you plan to send press releases to the same publications on a regular basis, it’s best to reach out to those editors to find out how they prefer to receive them. As a general rule, most editors prefer to receive press releases electronically via email. When you send a press release, send it as a Word file as it’s easier for editors to interact with the copy and make edits. Although some PDF files do allow users to interact with the copy, certain versions do not. The goal is to make it as easy as possible for editors to engage your release. Also, there is no need to call editors an hour later to make sure they received your press release. Editors are often working on tight deadlines; calling about a press release is a waste of their time.
Trade magazines receive hundreds of press releases every month. By writing your press releases with strong, fact-driven content, and engaging the press on their terms, you’ll have a better chance of your product receiving favorable coverage. And that’s something to stop the presses over.