Attract Attention to Your Company Website: Send Out A Press Release
Milwaukee, WI - February 11, 2003
Written by Kosana Stojcevic
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ONE WAY TO KEEP YOUR COMPANY'S WEBSITE FRESH AND UP-TO-DATE IS TO INCLUDE YOUR COMPANY'S PRESS RELEASES AND NEWSWORTHY INFORMATION IN IT.
A press release is a great way of keeping the public informed about changes within your company, new partnerships & affiliations, or new services being offered. In this article you will find some tips that help to make the process of writing a press release a little easier.
Be sure contact information is included
Time is of the essence where a press release is concerned. Since it usually refers to a current event, it is important that the contact information is realistic. "List the name and phone number of the person who will actually be answering any questions – not a CEO, who may need weeks to get back to a media person," suggests Jennifer M. West, Public Relations/Marketing Communications Consultant.
The first paragraph of any article that will be sent out to various media sources should include the important information -- the who, what, where, when, and how/why. The writer may expand on the subject and the details may be developed in the body. However, the editor you send it to should be able to tell within the first few minutes exactly what your release is about.
Be sure the last paragraph contains the correct title, address, spelling of name, phone and URL of the author of the press release. The last paragraph is usually a brief description of the company sending out the release -- this is your best shot at including information about how readers can reach you, and is a courtesy to an editor, who should not have to make a follow-up call requesting that information. Editors receive many releases every day and if they have to choose between tracking down contact information on one release, or running a release that already has that information, they will most likely choose the one that involves less time to verify.
How much is too much?
A press release should be concise and to the point, one to two pages are enough. The second page should note at the top, its page number and a brief subject heading, for example: Page Two, (Company Name) Personnel Announcement. Editors get a ton of information on a daily basis, stapling two page releases will minimize the chance of the pages of the release getting separated and/or lost. "Sometimes, if the information is very complicated, I write a longer release. My general philosophy, however, is that a short release providing the vital information, capturing an editor's interest and allowing him/her to ask the follow-up questions of choice is the best route," states Ms. West. If the article needs to be shortened because of lack of space, copy can be cut from the bottom without losing the most important information.
Where to submit articles for publication
Local news outlets are a good place to start. Begin with local newspapers and electronic media such as radio and television stations. If the article is about an employee’s accomplishment, it should be sent to the subject's alumni publication. It could also be submitted to professional trade publications or summarized and included in internal newsletters. With the growing proliferation of Internet sites, there may be various contacts/links/sites that should be emailed the release as well.
"Including a direct quote from an appropriate person allied with the sending company is good -- it adds a little interest, but also provides a personal angle without the editor having to spend a lot of time tracking someone down," added West.
A press release is a very good way to raise the profile of your company, as well as keeping the public informed of any changes or advancements you have made. By including a press release on your website it reaches an even wider audience.
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