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October 23, 2017
If you have never written a press release, writing one for the first time can be daunting. If you have written a press release, this overview of the components will serve as an excellent refresher.
Here is a press release template you can use to write a press release that includes formatting standard for the industry.
PRESS RELEASE TEMPLATE - Headline, sub-head, dateline, body, boilerplate, contact.
Press Release Headline - You want to keep your headline in upper/lower (title case). Your headline needs to be short, attention grabbing, yet kept completely factual. Avoid too much hype.
Sub-Headline - Your sub-headline should avoid capitals and is kept as an option.
Dateline - CITY, (State/Prov), M/D/Y (company) - The dateline is a brief piece of text in the format described previous that is included in the news article which describes where and when the story was written or filed. Typically, the distributing organization, (like 24-7 Press Release Newswire) is also included.
Immediately following the dateline information is your opening sentence. This is the primary snippet of information (aside from the headline) that will either hook or deter your reader. This sentence should be clear and concise. It may be helpful to write your press release in full, sleep on it, re-read it and then summarize what you have written.
These first sentences will transition into the body of your release which should ideally be limited to between four and six paragraphs. Within these paragraphs you will want to keep each piece of information factual and to the point. Your writing style should be kept to the third person, also known as Illeism. More tips on this may be found from 'Booksoarus'. The number of sentences within each paragraph should be between four and seven, seven if they are short sentences. Overall, your press release should be no more than about 475 words or you will start to lose the interest of your audience.
Including a strong quote from a founder, director, executive or industry expert, will help to strengthen the story. John Dough, industry expert at JD Consulting advised, "The widget that ABC Company has introduced is truly an amazing technology that will raise the eyebrows of those within the industry." You can find more about this widget at ... (link to a further in-depth story).
Once your press release is written, ensure to spell check it. Sleeping on it and not sending it out in a rush is always advisable.
The boilerplate can be looked at as pre-created information about your company, business and or industry that you are in that may be used over again as an overview of your business. For example: ABC Company entered into the widget building industry in 1976 serving the widget market. With more than 5,000 employees and 52 locations around the globe, ABC Company is a stronghold for widgets within their industry.
It is always important to leave contact information at the bottom of your press release. Standard contact information may include:
Media contact (name)
Title of the media contact
Optionally, if you have any images you may wish to include, you can add a small section called "links to product images" where you include no more than 3 images. Some press distribution sites, like 24-7 Press Release Newswire display the images only on their website. Images are not always transferred over the wire services.
Press Release Examples
There are a wide range of industries for which a press release may be written. Below are a few press release examples for different industries.
There are many reasons for writing a press release, as you can see from the examples listed above. Ensuring you include proper press release formatting will help give you that extra visibility you may not have otherwise received.