Things A Successful Press Release Must Include

Many marketers get nervous at the idea of writing a press release. They think their writing skills are not good enough, or that there is some magic involved in writing a successful press release.


There’s no magic, but there is a formula for success that anyone can follow. Use this checklist to take your press releases to a new level.

1. The headline

This should be brief, grab attention and offer a promise of interesting, newsworthy information. It should include at least one keyword related to your niche or industry to make it more searchable, and a strong verb to convey some sort of action or important event has taken place.

2. The subheadline

This gives additional information about the headline and summarizes what the press release will be about. Add keywords to also make it more searchable, so journalists can find it and become intrigued.

3. Your dateline

Add the city and state where your press release is being issued from: Chicago, IL

Add the date to show when the press release was issued:

August 8, 2018

So the dateline would read: Chicago, IL, August 8, 2018

You might also include the words “For Immediate Release,” so journalists know they can publish it right away, with no embargo date.

If you do want to set an embargo date, state it: “Please Embargo Until August 20, 2018.” They might not, but it’s better to give them a long lead time than to miss your chance of media pickups. Don’t publish too far in advance or they will forget about you.

4. Paragraph 1

The opening paragraph of a good press release should include the 5Ws:

  • Who
  • What
  • When
  • Where
  • Why

These are the essential facts for most news stories, so including them in your press release means you should be giving journalists everything they need to know to run with your story.

5. Paragraph 2

This paragraph can include any of the 5Ws that didn’t fit into paragraph1, and any other information which gives a context as to why your release is important. You could add statistics, highlight a couple of benefits to your niche, and so on.

6. Paragraph 3

This paragraph can include more background, or some quotes that also provide a context for the press release.  Quotations tend to liven up a story. A quote from a recognizable name in your niche or industry can demonstrate to a journalist that your press release is worth paying attention to. The last sentence in Paragraph 3 should be your call to action.

7-The call to action

What do you want people to do after they have read your press release? The call to action will tell them. Your call to action will be determined by your goal in publishing the press release. For example, if you want to get people to attend a live event, instruct them to go to an URL to register. If you want to get more subscribers, send them to an URL with a sign-up form. Offer readers a free ebook or another useful incentive to encourage them, so they will then be on your email marketing list and you can start sending them offers any time you wish.

8. Media

Include a high-quality image, and perhaps a video that offers more information about the product or event.

9. Paragraph 4

Paragraph 4 always contains the boilerplate and contact information:

i. The boilerplate

This is a brief description of your company that tells interesting information to why your company and press release are worth paying attention to.

ii. The contact information for whoever is going to follow up with journalists as needed:

  • Name
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • URL of your media page at your site

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.

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