We often come across concepts, the meaning of which we do not know, but which we constantly encounter when reading newspapers or magazines. PR and press release - how are these things related and what are they?
Press release: basic concept and functions
A press release is one of the main PR documents of any private organization. If you translate the phrase "press-release" from English, you get literally "what is presented to the press; what is released to the masses”- ie a document that establishes a dialogue between the company and the public through an intermediary - the media.
A press release is essentially plain text material, sometimes supplemented with pictures or photographs. The material of the press release can be called news about things happening within the organization, the opinion of the organization on any issue or the response of this organization to events in a particular area.
Don't confuse a communique with a press release. Communique - information-notification about past, for example, international negotiations, summits, meetings. A communiqué is a state press release covering important events for the country.
What are the functions of a press release?
The main function of a press release is to attract the attention of the public or target audience by informing the media about important (or not quite) events that have occurred in the organization the day before.
Distribution of press releases allows you to attract the target audience or investors, or simply increase the popularity of the company and public awareness of the existence of a particular organization.
Press Release Structure: How To Write The Right Press Release. Advice
Many PR managers have their own style of writing press releases, and also give preference to certain details in different ways. However, there are some basic points that any press release must comply with:
1. Competent heading. The heading should reflect the whole essence of further material. A correctly composed title should not be long, but should concisely describe the essence of the topic; it should catch on in the first second, forcing a person to read on.
2. First-second paragraphs. The most important paragraphs take about the same amount of time to write as the rest of the material. The paragraphs should not be long - about 2-3 clearly formulated sentences. The first paragraph (lead) should answer the questions: "Who?", "What?", "How?", "Where?", "Why?"
The lead should laconically and as informatively as possible disclose the whole essence of the press release - it is by this that the journalist will judge whether this material should be placed in a newspaper, magazine, or on a website.
3. Press release should not be large - maximum 2 A4 pages in 12 Times New Roman font. The press release should not contain advertisements and calls to buy this or that product or service - this scares off journalists, generates in them distrust of the organization.
It is worth considering that press releases are divided into two types: news releases (information about past events or activities) and press release announcements, i.e. information about upcoming events that are supposedly recommended to visit by the media.
4. The rest of the body of a press release is often dry facts and figures that will attract the people most interested (target audience). This part of the press release reaches 30% of readers. It may contain comments from authority figures (company management, investors, etc.), as well as the company's background - a summary of the company's history and successes.
The information in the press release must meet the following characteristics:
- Relevance of information (topicality, uniqueness or even connection of information with some important social problem)
- It should be interesting to the audience for which it is intended: if the information is related to business - more numbers and facts, if it is related to culture - more adjectives and metaphors.
- Freshness of information: what was written about a week ago, nobody will be interested in today.