January 25, 2024

How to write and distribute a press release in seven easy steps

The Power of a Press Release

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If you’ve never written a press release or think your business news isn’t significant enough for a press release, this guide is for you!

Press releases are key to promoting any business momentum or growth (e.g., product launch, signing your first commercial deal, or making your first big hire). Each press release published into the world is a bread crumb of your business’s story and provides visibility of your traction to media outlets, potential customers, and the broader web (read: Search Engine Optimization).

Let’s get started!

#1. Isolate your business news and why it’s important to your customers and your industry. (This will also help you write an attention-grabbing headline!)

Once you’ve identified the business news, start by writing your headline. This will be the blueprint for your actual press release.

We recommend sticking to the tried and true 5 W’s:

The most important W? The “why”. Editors and reporters estimate they receive dozens of press releases in their inbox, every single day. You will get their attention by making your business’s news pass the “so what?” test.

Here are two EZ Newswire headlines that pass the “so what?” test:

#2: The first paragraph matters (a lot).

The first paragraph of your press release is the most important. Attention spans are limited so all the key information (the five W’s) needs to be captured in the first paragraph, especially the “why”.

Here’s an example from a Jersey Mike’s press release published via EZ Newswire:

Jersey Mike's Subs announced today the return of its elementary school creativity competition in partnership with the world-famous Harlem Globetrotters. Known as the ‘Court of Creativity presented by Jersey Mike's Subs,’ the contest will award $1,000 to 10 finalists, and one grand prize-winning school will receive a visit from the Harlem Globetrotters before the end of the 2023–24 school year.”

Why is this press release newsworthy? A major fast food chain, Jersey Mikes, is partnering with a major sports franchise, the Harlem Globetrotters!

#3: Show, don’t tell.

Brevity is key in a press release. You want to share your business news concisely and have the body copy driven by supporting data points and quotes.

For quotes, avoid filler. Include quotes from key stakeholders that drive the narrative forward. 

For example, we love this quote from a Glamorise press release published via EZ Newswire:

“Our bra designs are rooted in the idea that no one knows more about a bra than the consumer," said Glamorise CEO Jon Pundyk. "We conduct extensive consumer research, spend years in the fitting room developing a new bra, and then run consumer wear panels to refine our designs so they really work. We’re proud to say this new line is perhaps our most focused and thoughtful in the company’s history."

The quote not only stands out because it’s from the company CEO but because it underscores why the company’s business update, about the launch of a new bra line whose design is informed by extensive customer research, is newsworthy.

#4: Don’t forget a boilerplate and a media contact.

The boilerplate is a standard component of a great press release. It is a 2-3 sentence overview of your business that is included at the end of the press release under the heading “About [Your business here]”, usually ending with the company’s website so that readers know where to go to learn more.

And don’t forget to include a media contact! That is who media outlets will reach out to if they want to report on your business.

#5: Optimize for keywords.

Once you’re done writing, ensure your press release copy, especially your headline is optimized for search discoverability. Include keywords that are aligned with the topic of your press release in the headline, first paragraph, and at least two other times in the press release body copy.

You can leverage free keywords tools like Ahrefs, Semrush, and WordStream to find the best topic-specific keywords based on your press release topic.

#6: Be thoughtful about where you distribute your press release.

Your press release doesn’t need to reach everyone, only your key customers (publishers and potential buyers of your product and/or service). To reach your key customers, you need to have a firm understanding of their media diet. You want to ensure your press release appears in publications and properties they regularly read. Leveraging a tool like EZ Newswire allows your business news to appear where your key customers already are.

#7: Don’t forget to share the press release with your network.

Your news matters to those in your community, including existing and prospective customers, employees, and investors. Be sure to use your social channels and an email campaign to distribute a press release and amplify your business announcement. Remember that momentum begets momentum!

If writing a press release from scratch sounds daunting, let us help! Create, publish, and strategically place your professional news release in minutes by clicking here.