Sample Press Release Format 2020: Instructions & Free Template

Imagine this scenario: you are working on your press release and, mid-sentence, that thing that you wanted to write just slips out of your mind entirely.  Damn, what was your next paragraph about? It’s on the tip of your tongue…

Does that happen a lot to you? All the time? Sometimes?

Are you sick of forgetting how to structure your press release?

Use this simple list to remind yourself of each important element of your press release.

The Best Practices In Press Release Writing

1. When writing your press releases think about the news substance of your content


If your press release is not newsworthy, then you are not ready to stand out from the crowd and blast your news out to the media. 

To gain credibility and provide value to your target audience,  you need to share an interesting and relevant information with them.  Your press release needs  to be newsworthy…

Interesting…

Relevant….

If you haven’t found your newsworthy angle yet, keep on searching – don’t waste your time writing any text at all. Start searching… keep on digging.

2. Each press release should answer some basic who, what, when, where and why questions

Try to magine how your target audience will come across your press release. What would you like them to learn about your brand, product or event? What is your interesting angle for sharing exactly this story…  YOUR story? How does it relate to them or to their search on Google ?

Summarize your announcement in the first two sentences: expand on the information that you have already provided in the title of your news announcement by answering those important W-questions but don’t overdo it.

Create a short paragraph with information about your company, create a profile as an introduction to your story.  It is always tempting to write a lot of content for a website, news article or a social media post, especially when it is YOURS. It is also easy to talk about your products and services because this is your business and the brand that you are excited about.

Still, keep your sentences short and concise.  Too much information is a bad thing, so try to limit your press releases to 350-600 words each.

3. Work on your summary and headline. Especially headline!


Your goal is to attract the attention of the reader by saying what is new, different or unique about your business: the whole purpose of writing a Press Release is to share news.  

The writing of a press release headline is an art form of its own. Get really good at it.

If your headline stinks, is dull or confusing, then you will not be able to make a convincing argument why your press release should be read at the first place. Nobody will pay attention to your news annuoncement.

The headline is the absolute first thing a reader sees and if the headline is catchy, there is a higher chance that the viewers skimming through Google Page results will check out your first introductory paragraph, then read your body…. and maybe follow your call to action – click on the link that you have included in your press release, visit your event or make that call.

Leads… leads… leads you can get them all.

On the other hand, if the headline doesn’t knock them down, they will simply move on.

4. Add a quote to your press release to support the claims you make in your press release

A paragraph with a quote can go right after your introductory paragraph or be added towards the end of your press release before the call to action.

What kind of a quote should you include in your press release?  Do you have any great reviews on your social media channels or can you use any quote from an email conversation – testimonial from your customers? You can cite a user of your program or software, an executive in charge of the organization, a stakeholder, an investor, a workshop participant, an influencer in the industry … Such quotes can make your press release sound more newsworthy and entice your prospective customers, even more, to buy your product or attend your event.

A good quote can raise the interest of the reader in the subject. It also adds more credibility.

5. Optimize your content

If you want to enhance the chances of your press release to rank high on search engine results pages and enjoy high web visibility then add relevant long-tail keyword phrases to the body, headline, and summary paragraph of your press release.

Relevant backlinks can create an influx of traffic to your designated pages, so don’t forget to add URLs to your text… put them early on in your text.

6.  Add information about the release date, a brief bio about your company and your contact information

To get your name and promote your company online, apart from your company name you can list your email address, phone number, & physical address.

You need to provide just enough information in your press release that will help tease journalists, readers and potential leads: the right amount of information will make them want to learn more about you and your brand.

And then offer a chance for them to find more information and details by contacting you or by clicking on the links that you provide within the body of youu press release.

7. Proofread your content and do a quick quality check to ensure that your press release is the best it can be.

Avoid using any hype language, misleading phrases or unsustained claims.  Fact-check your press release by having a second look at all claims and statistics that you mention in the text and especially at the backlinks that you have included.

Refrain from using too salesy language: think of yourself as of a storyteller, not a salesperson.

You should know this by now, but note it again: the information that you provide should be unbiased and accurate.

Congrats! You’ve vastly increased your skills of writing interesting and engaging press releases and the chances of your press release to rank high on Google.

– PRESS RELEASE TEMPLATE –

You can use the following template to organize the information that you have gathered to write a press release and create content that people want to read – that is as tight and to the point as possible press release announcement.

[Headline Of The Press Release]


[City] [State} Release Date: [“For Immediate Release” or a concrete date][Summary Section: Briefly describe your announcement]

[Insert a quote from a company representative related to the news]

[Write an additional paragraph to provide more details about the announcement: try to respond to all relevant W-questions (where, what, why, when, who)]

[Insert another quote or another section with details about the news]

[Include a call to action and an URL address where the reader can find more information about the news, the company or a product]

[Boilerplate message about the company: insert the following information
Contact info:
Name:
Company:
Address:
URL:
Phone:]

For more tips on how to prepare your press release campaign, check out the other Press Release Zen articles from our category Tips & Tricks.

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