Have you ever noticed that when someone is interviewed on
radio, television or in the newspapers about a particular
subject, it tends to be the same people? You may even be
saying - "Why don't they ever ask me?"
Well the reason is - they don't know about you. If they did
know that you were an expert on a particular subject, then
there's a good chance you'll be asked from time to time.
There are various ways to make yourself known to the media.
One way is to write a News Release. Send the media a news
release when you want to announce:
A new product or service -
A new marketing campaign -
A new address -
New staff or someone being promoted -
Any other newsworthy information about you, your business or
Editors, radio and TV producers receive tons of information
from individuals and companies trying to get publicity for
their business. However, they need information that is
newsworthy, relevant and interesting for their audience.
There are guidelines for writing and laying out a news
release - if you don't meet these guidelines then your
release will probably get dumped immediately.
A News Release needs
A contact person - In the top left-hand corner of the first
page put the name and telephone number of a person who can
provide further information. If it's your name then okay,
but an editor would expect to see someone else's name rather
than the business owner. If you have an assistant, put their
name or your partner's name - if they work with you.
Date - In the top right-hand corner. You also need to state
when it can be released, if it's for immediate release then
- put those words. You may want it to be released on a
particular date - if so, give the details.
Headline - You need a headline that summarises the story and
grabs the editor's attention. Write what you might expect to
see in the particular publication or hear someone say.
The Body - Write your news release on one page if you can;
two pages maximum. Up to 250 words double spaced and a
maximum of four paragraphs. Always write in the "third
person" not the first. Make your information exciting and
human, think about what would grab the attention of the
readers. Include a quotation from a customer if you can;
for example - Fred Smith, Chief Executive of Apex Software
said - "This is the most exciting new product to be
introduced to our industry this year!"
Here are a few other points to consider when writing a news
It's not a sales document - This is news information, it is
not an advertisement. You don't want words like - "Wonderful
- Fantastic New Service. If an editor thinks you're
just trying to get a free advertisement then it'll be
Think of questions - Be prepared for any questions you might
be asked if an editor phones for more information; you don't
want to blow it if you get to this stage.
Get a name - Find out the name of the person to send it to,
if it's aimed at the business community send it to - John
Brown, Business Editor, XYZ newspaper. If you can't get the
name over the phone then, send it to the Business Editor or
the Lifestyle Editor. You can usually find the name of the
person you want from the latest edition of the publication
you're sending it to. If it's for radio or TV, phone and ask
- "Who should I send this to?"
Media services - There are media distribution services
that'll send out your release to all the relevant people -
for a fee
PR Company - You could employ a PR company who'll do the
whole News Release for you. They know how to write it and
who to send it to. They'll also have contacts - journalists,
TV editors, producers. They can often get you an interview
with these people.
Here are a couple of books that could be useful:
One Step Ahead: Publicity, Newspapers and Press Releases -
by Alison Baverstock
Press Here! Managing the Media for Free Publicity - by Annie
Discover how you can generate more business without having
to cold call!
Alan Fairweather is the author of "How to get More Sales
without Selling" This book is packed with practical things
that you can do to ? get customers to come to you .
Click here now