Writing better press releases

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Writing better press releases

  1. 1. 5 Top Tips for Writing Press Releases:Karen AckermanDirector of Mediastorieswww.mediastories.co.ukinfo@mediastories.co.uk@kazackerman
  2. 2. MediastoriesTop tips for press releases It’s not about you: The point of a press release is to get your story in the paper. Think about what the journalist wants, not what you want! No one is interested in your new report… your new initiative blah blah blah… All they want to know is, what’s the story. Tell them what they need. Keep asking yourself… So what? Get their attention fast: Journalists are busy people… You need to get their attention with a great headline and make things simple for them. Know your media: Get to know your local or relevant media. Know what kind of stories they are looking for and their deadlines. Do their job for them: Tell them a story. Lay out clearly the who, what, when and how of the story. Think like a journalist. What do they need? If you can provide • A clear story with an angle • One or two interesting facts • A good case study who is ready to be interviewed • A good quote • Clear contact information Keep it simple Cut out all the jargon, management speak and formal language. Write simply, like a real person. Keep it short. One page ideally.
  3. 3. MediastoriesTop tips for press releases Template for a press release: Heading Catchy, snappy headline For immediate release: [date] If you are happy for the story to be used now. Embargoed for: [time/date] If you want the journalist to wait until a specific time. Paragraph 1 What’s the story? Who, what, when, why. So what! Paragraph 2 More information about the story Paragraph 3: Short quotes from relevant people. Case study details. Paragraph 4: Extra information if there is any. Ends Notes for Editors More background information about your organisation. If they have room for a longer article this may be useful. Details of any case studies, photos and other things that will help the journalist write their story. Contact Phone and email contact information for night and day to ensure they can get hold of someone for their deadline. Mediastories:
  4. 4. MediastoriesTop tips for press releases Karen, recently combined her15 years experience in television production and 3 years managing training programmes at the UKs leading media training provider, the BBC Academy to set up mediastories. At mediastories, her passion for storytelling and training combine together to help charities, voluntary organisations and community groups to gain the digital media skills they need to tell their stories with the most impact Karen trained as a journalist, starting her career at BBC Five Live. She then spent 15 years working in television including 10 as a producer at the BBC on programmes such as Blue Peter. She then spent three years working for the BBC Academy, the largest and most prestigious training department in the UK media sector, running an innovative project to help BBC staff learn new skills by working with charities and other non profits and helping them with their media. She is also a trustee of the international development charity Tzedek. Mediastories can help you with film making, story telling and train your team to communicate your success with more impact. www.mediastories.co.uk

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