A Step-By-Step Guide On Press Release Writing

Many new marketers and business owners have heard of press releases but are not sure how to write one. It’s easier than you think if you follow the suggested template step-by-step. Here are the essentials for each press release:


1. Newsworthy Information

A press release is intended to communicate news about your company to journalists and other media personnel in hopes of getting media pickups. The news must be genuine, don’t make it an advertisement. Genuine newsworthy items would include: launching a new product, hosting a live event, or changing the structure of your company.

2. The Headline

The headline should be brief, command attention, and contain a keyword that signals what niche or industry you are working in. Make it catchy, but not click-baity.

3. The Subheadline

The subheadline gives additional information to clarify the headline and also generates a broader idea of what the release is about. It should also contain keywords related to your niche or industry.

4. Dateline

Include the city where your company is located, and the date you are issuing the press release. The city might trigger local media pickups. The date shows how current the information is when journalists are browsing through all the press release at your site or at the press release distribution service interface.

Example: New York, New York, September 10, 2018

5. The first paragraph

The first paragraph of any good press release will contain what is called the 5Ws:

  • Who
  • What
  • When
  • Where
  • Why

This is a useful checklist journalists use to make sure they include all the facts of a news story and don’t leave anything important out. If you use the 5Ws you will be giving the journalists all they need to pick up your story.

6. Paragraph 2

In this paragraph, include any of the 5Ws that you weren’t able to fit into the first paragraph. Also include supporting information, such as the context of the story, so readers can understand why it is important. Facts, figures and statistics will usually help.

7. Paragraph 3

In this paragraph, include at least one quotation from people in the know in your niche. It could be the head of your company. Even better, it could be a comment from someone who is a recognized expert in your niche. This will also provide a context and show journalists that you are worth paying attention to, and therefore worth picking up.

8. Media

Include at least one high-quality image to support your press release. It should be of the new product you are launching, for example, if that is why you are writing the press release.

Include video, as well, if available. Good formats include a problem and solution format, with your product helping people in your niche. How-to videos are also very popular. A quick start guide on how to use your product once you buy it will also work well. Upload your content to YouTube, copy the embed code, and paste it in the press release distribution service interface.

Include captions for each image or video and a Creative Commons license so journalists will feel free to use it without worrying about infringing on any copyrights.

9. A Call to Action

Tell readers what you want them to do after reading the press release. For example, send them to an URL where they can learn more, download a free item, and so on.

10. Your Boilerplate

Write a short paragraph giving background information about your company so journalists will know who you are and what you do.

11. The Contact Information for the person who will follow up with Journalists

Provide the name, email, and phone.

12. Add a Signal for the End of the Release

Use the symbol ### to show that readers have reached the end of the release so they don’t look for additional pages.

Call us today to speak to one of our PR specialists: 1-800-713-7278

Anthony Santiago is Director of Marketing at Newswire. With over a decade of experience in PR, he helps ensure that clients understand the value of brand messaging and reach.

Catch up on the rest of your content marketing news and strategy