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How To Write Successful News Release

EnhanceMyMarketing.com's media release writing guide. Find a step-by-step barebones how-to guide to writing successful news and media releases to promote your business Website.

by Randall S. Hansen, Ph.D., Founder of the EmpoweringSites.com Network

One of the most important lessons that beginners need to learn is that writing media releases is all about developing a persuasive communication within the framework of a traditional news story format.

Editors will quickly trash media releases that make outlandish promotional promises -- "the best ever," "everyone wins," "one-of-a-kind," "changing humankind forever." You get the idea. Instead, press release writers must think like a reporter. Media releases must follow journalistic style in order to be given any kind of consideration. How do you accomplish this task? Here's a barebones guideline.

  1. The Headline: In about ten words -- or less -- you need to grab the attention of the editor. The headline should summarize the information in the press release, but in a way that is exciting and dynamic; think of it as a billboard along a highway -- you have just a few words to make your release stand out among the many others editors receive on any given day.
  2. Dateline: The dateline contains originating city of the media release as well as the release date of the press release.

  3. Opening Paragraph: Sometimes called a summary lead, your first paragraph is critical. This paragraph must explain "the five Ws and one H" of the story -- the who, what, when, where, why, and how. This paragraph must summarize the press release, with the following paragraphs providing the detail.

    The opening paragraph must also contain the hook: the one thing that gets your audience interested in reading more -- but remember that the hook has to be relevant to your audience as well as to the news media. A hook is not a hard sell or a devious promotion -- it's just a factual statement.
  4. The Body: Using a strategy called the inverted pyramid, the body of the press release should be written with the most important information and quotes first. This inverted pyramid technique is used so that if editors need to cut the story to fit space constraints, they can cut from the end without losing critical information.
  5. The Closing Paragraph: Repeat the critical contact information, including the name of the person, his or her phone number and/or email address.

See two examples of successful press releases.

Return to Guide to Writing Successful Media/Press Releases.

EmpoweringSites.com CEO Dr. Randall Hansen Web Marketing Guru Dr. Randall S. Hansen, CEO of EmpoweringSites.com -- a growing network of highly ranked educational and inspirational Websites -- has been empowering people his entire adult life. He is also founder and publisher of EmpoweringRetreat.com, MyCollegeSuccessStory.com, and EnhanceMyVocabulary.com. Dr. Hansen is also a published author, with several books, chapters in books, and hundreds of articles. He's often quoted in the media and conducts empowering workshops around the country. Hansen is also an educator, having taught at the college level for more than 15 years. He holds a doctorate in marketing and has been involved in marketing his entire life. Learn more at his personal Website, RandallSHansen.com. Check out Dr. Hansen on GooglePlus.

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