Go On Say Something Interesting[1]

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Go On Say Something Interesting[1]

  1. 1. Go on, say something interesting... The art of writing press releases
  2. 2. Basic rules <ul><li>Tell me something I don’t know... but something </li></ul><ul><li>I would want to know </li></ul><ul><li>Good stories travel... </li></ul><ul><li>Will it interest people </li></ul><ul><li>outside your building? </li></ul><ul><li>If not, pin it on a noticeboard </li></ul>
  3. 3. Sigh... <ul><li>Company A is delighted </li></ul><ul><li>to announce it has secured </li></ul><ul><li>a contract with Company B... </li></ul><ul><li>But we’re not going to tell </li></ul><ul><li>you how much it’s worth... </li></ul><ul><li>What it will involve... </li></ul><ul><li>Nor if it will create new jobs </li></ul>
  4. 4. … and sigh again <ul><li>Company A is delighted to announce that it has </li></ul><ul><li>acquired Company B </li></ul><ul><li>But we’re not going to tell you why... </li></ul><ul><li>Certainly not how much for... nor what it means </li></ul><ul><li>for our staff. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Before I press delete... <ul><li>Don’t just say what’s </li></ul><ul><li>happened... </li></ul><ul><li>Explain the significance of the news for your </li></ul><ul><li>business and your workforce... </li></ul><ul><li>Maybe even your industry... maybe your town. </li></ul>
  6. 6. The past is a foreign country… <ul><li>Don’t assume we know </li></ul><ul><li>what you do... </li></ul><ul><li>In the mainstream media, journalists are laymen </li></ul><ul><li>and so are our readers... </li></ul><ul><li>Jargon is a barrier to understanding </li></ul>
  7. 7. Hmmm… this could make a story <ul><li>Size isn’t everything... </li></ul><ul><li>But give us a sense of scale... </li></ul><ul><li>Are you a £300k, £3m, £30m turnover business? </li></ul><ul><li>One-man band, a dozen, or scores of staff? </li></ul>
  8. 8. But where’s the pithy quote? <ul><li>Don’t just be “delighted”... </li></ul><ul><li>Tell us (and our readers) </li></ul><ul><li>why this makes a </li></ul><ul><li>difference </li></ul><ul><li>You’ve got our attention... and reasons to give </li></ul><ul><li>the story prominence </li></ul>
  9. 9. But what about stormy weather? <ul><li>Bad news has a habit of </li></ul><ul><li>finding its way into the </li></ul><ul><li>public domain... </li></ul><ul><li>We’ll never make things up... we aim to be fair </li></ul><ul><li>and accurate </li></ul><ul><li>But if only one side of the story is talking... it </li></ul><ul><li>doesn’t make it easy to be balanced </li></ul>
  10. 10. Dib-dib-dib… <ul><li>Be prepared... </li></ul><ul><li>If you don’t want to be interviewed... prepare a </li></ul><ul><li>statement. </li></ul><ul><li>There’s always a reason... always an </li></ul><ul><li>explanation. </li></ul>
  11. 11. So who do I send it to? <ul><li>The editor? </li></ul><ul><li>The newsdesk? </li></ul><ul><li>The specialist </li></ul><ul><li>reporter? </li></ul>
  12. 12. It’s not rocket science <ul><li>You’re a savvy reader… </li></ul><ul><li>What stops you turning the page? </li></ul><ul><li>What questions would you ask of that business? </li></ul><ul><li>Think context – both for the facts and the </li></ul><ul><li>comment </li></ul>

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