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How to write a press release

Learning tool giving top tips on how to write press releases

Rhian Mullock

on 29 July 2010

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Transcript of How to write a press release

Headline - Introduction - How to write a press release Step 1: Write
your press
release - The press release should be no more than
1-1.5 pages long and include the following components:

* Title: short and snappy to sum-up the story briefly

* Introduction:include information about the story– who, what, when, where and why

* Main body: provide more in-depth details about the story, explain why this is newsworthy and interesting

* Include a quote which should explain why the event/product is needed

* Contact information: include your contact details at the end of the press release e.g. name, phone number, email address

* Notes to the Editor: this final
section should contain background
information on your organisation /
product or event

- Ensure you have all relevant
permissions - if any person,
organisation or product is mentioned
in the release ensure you have their
approval before distribution
- Consider the type
of media you are
targeting and develop
a media list
Distributing the press release - If your press release is regarding a launch or approval you will only be able to issue the press release on the launch date / date approval is received

- In other circumstances it may be possible to distribute your press release 3–4 days before the event with an embargo date

- An embargo date on a press release means that the journalist can read the press release, start interviewing people and developing the article, but cannot publish or broadcast the story until the embargo has lifted. You will need to clearly write on the top of the press release next to the date, above the press release title, the following embargo information: “Embargoed until [DATE], [TIME]”
- Find out who the key
contacts are in each
media outlet and email
the press release to
them - If you are organising an
event consider inviting
the journalist Step 4:
up - Follow up or phone the
journalist after the press release
has been sent to ensure that they
have received it. This will also
provide you with an opportunity
to explain your story to them in
more detail - Journalists receive dozens,
even hundreds, of press
releases everyday, and often
do not have time to read
them all. Following up with
the journalist will
increase the chances that
they will write about your
story - Monitor the media to
see if your story has
appeared - If it has appeared on
radio or TV ask the
station for a link to the
interview or news item Identify your media Step 3
Full transcript