Reduce me for starting with a not-very-clever rewording of an old saying, but today “almost all media is good news” if you are trying to generate presence for your company or organization. I’ll tell you how to create valuable news releases from information that you might not think has value and get it published. National Security
What do I mean by “almost all news is good news”? That just about any news can be turned into content for offline and online publications, gaining valuable presence for your business or organization.
Traditional news launches — or press produces as they used to be called back when real presses were employed by real news organizations to print news – got to vie for limited space on an imprinted page. Typically, that limited newsworthiness to stories about new products or services, new technologies, or major organizational news.
Today, however, the idea of “news” has changed dramatically. Posting space is almost unrestricted and publishers hungry for content. The lines have blurred between so-called “real” news organizations such as newspapers, magazines, and send out news outlets and “new media” such as online citizen-journalism sites, blogs, e-letters, and news aggregator services. Today, many of the stumbling blocks have faded that were once between people creating news and the outlets that posted it. It’s incredibly easy now to get your news published in a variety of places. The trick is writing something that will be of enough interest for someone to choose it up and publish it.
Picking a topic
There are more and more to write a news release about than you might think, beginning with the evident: a new product or service, openings and closings, restructurings (partnerships, mergers and acquisitions), and employee/staff information. These issues generally can be considered “hard” reports and worthy of extensive distribution, when possible.
Right now there are a host of other topics, yet , that many people don’t think to advertise with a media release, but that make ideal “soft” news launches. These subject areas include investment show and conference performances, awards, business anniversaries, new client wins, capital equipment purchases, and new functions. While a business syndication editor may consider these subject areas too self-serving to warrant publication, there are still good reasons to create a release on them, as you will soon enough see.
Creating your own news.
Don’t think you have enough news, hard or soft, to publish about? Then think about creating your own news. Develop a simple industry or customer survey, publish the results on your website, and write a reports release about this.
Write a report. Interview key staff in your organization along with your industry trade association with regards to your market or industry and distribute their insights. Then write a release about the real key findings, announcing the supply of the report for download on your website. After some thought, you should be able to think of several ways to create your own information.
Writing a news release
Now you need to publish about your topic. Keep in mind that this is media, not advertising, and an editor will judge whether it’s worth publishing. Prevent jargon and using keyword phrases such as “industry leading”, “number one”, “unique”, and any other conditions that smack of self-serving advertising.
Lead with all the important information in the first paragraph, beginning with the topic, the company, and why your reports is important. Traditionally, this is known as the “five W’s and the H” – who, what, where, when, why, and just how. Keep sentences simple and paragraphs short.
Add the details to the central portion, or body, of your release and handle with what’s called the “boilerplate” – the standard information about your company or organization, including basic explanation, locations, and web treat. If your company is big enough it may also include the number of employees, subsidiary information, and stock ticker symbol if it’s publicly traded.
Circulating a news release
In this article comes the fun part – getting the phrase out so the best prospects see it. If your market is fairly small, you might be able to assembled your own distribution list based on trade publications and industry organizations (here’s an idea for finding the best prospects on their websites: exercise into the Contact Us section, normally a button in the footer at the very bottom of the page – key personnel and their email addresses in many cases are listed there). It takes a bit work, but it’s worth the cost because you will have a concise, up-to-date set of exactly the people you may need to reach. Just remember to update it periodically.