6 Steps to Write a Press Release for Reputation Management

Want to know how to write a press release?
Great, your search ends here.
In this post, you’ll learn how to write a press release for reputation management. We’ll describe
six steps to write formal announcements in an objective and easy-to-understand way.
Follow these steps to create meaningful news.

1. Use a Goal to Make the Structure

Every press release has a major goal to communicate with the public. A product launch, a new
partnership announcement, a note about a new investor, etc. – the goal can help to organize the
entire text.
Here’s how to organize your press release:

    • Topic. Describes the goal of the release
        • Introductory sentence (summary that supports the heading)
          • Supporting idea #1. Gives background details
          • Supporting idea #2. Gives more details about the main topic
          • Supporting idea #3. More details about the main topic.

Let’s now take this press release from Samsung. The purpose is to announce the recent
decision to join Google's Android Enterprise Recommended program.

    • Topic: Samsung Galaxy Smartphones and Tablets Join Android Enterprise
      Recommended Program

      • Introductory sentence: “Samsung extends partnership with Google and expands
        commitment to offer best-in-class security and productivity solutions”

        • Supporting idea #1: “Long Standing Partnership Between Samsung and
          Google.”
        • Supporting idea #2: “Samsung’s Relentless Commitment to Enterprise
          Customers.”
        • Supporting idea #3. “What This Means for Galaxy Users.”

2. Make a Focused Headline

In essence, the headline should summarize the entire press release in fewer than ten words. In
most cases, it describes the main information point you’d like to share.
The best headlines meet these criteria:

  • Fewer than ten words in length
  • Not written in a blog style, e.g., “How to launch a product in two months.”
  • Exclude any exaggerations and marketing talk
  • Written in the active voice, e.g., “ABC acquires a new building in downtown Boston,” not
    “A new building in downtown Boston is acquired by ABC.”
  • Mention the name of the company.

These headlines from IKEA are a good example – short, with a proper style, and on point.

Credit: IKEA Newsroom

3. Optimize for SEO

PR professionals and digital marketers publish thousands of press releases every day. Yet, people don’t even notice most of them. In fact, over 90 percent of websites don’t even get any organic traffic from Google.

A lack of SEO optimization is a major reason why press releases remain undiscovered. To give yours some attention from Google:

  • Add at least five keywords. Use a keyword research tool to find relevant keyword options and include in the text naturally
  • Use headings and subheadings (H1, H2, H3, etc.). Formatting press releases with these helps Google to make sense of the text
  • Write short paragraphs. Limit each paragraph to three sentences to make it easier for Google to crawl it
  • Link to other pages. If you’re writing a product announcement, place links to landing or product pages.

By using these four SEO tips, you’ll increase online visibility of your press releases.

4. Begin with Introductory Section

Writing an introductory section is a common practice to begin online press releases. It’s a one-sentence summary of the release that gives additional details about the topic. You could say it’s a second, more descriptive subheading.

There are two good ways to write the introductory section:

  • Descriptive
  • List in a sentence
  • Bullet list.

With a descriptive introduction, you’re summarizing the main point of the release in an ordinary sentence. It shouldn’t be very specific but rather give the reader a good idea about what you’re trying to say.

Here’s an example from Wizz Air’s newsroom. The company uses the descriptive style to announce the recent launch of the carbon offsetting scheme.

Credit: Wizz Air Newsroom

A list-based introductory section lists the main points from the release and separates them with commas. It’s useful for information-heavy press releases where multiple major ideas are involved.

In this example, Apple announced the next generation of Mac computers. The company gave a list of the four most important points, including new products and technologies.

Credit: Apple Newsroom

You can also write the intro section as a bullet list. Just choose the most important information points to summarize the content. Also, don’t use more than four bullets to avoid overwhelming the reader.

Dell uses this strategy to make their announcements.

Credit: Dell Newsroom

5. Be Mindful of Language and Style

Press releases should be written in a “news writing” style. If you have no experience with it, no worries. Checking a few examples and following some techniques should be enough for a good writer to write a press release for reputation management.

Here are the techniques to keep in mind:

  • Avoid conversational language and “textspeak”
  • Use the third person
  • Never express opinions unless they’re attributed to a good source
  • Minimize the use of jargon, so people understand the details
  • Keep paragraphs short – between 2 and 4 sentences
  • Use bullet points to make the release more readable.
  • Support your claims with quotes from reputable people (CEOs, officials, etc.)

If you feel like a professional should take a look, check out this list of online writing services. There’s definitely a press release writing expert who can suggest improvements to language and style.

6. Add Contact Details

Any press release should end with contact details. They give the readers an opportunity to connect if they have any questions. Depending on the company and a preferred communication method, you can include:

  • Phone number
  • Email address for press inquiries
  • Link to a contact form
  • Link to a customer support page
  • Link to a knowledge base article.

IKEA, for example, uses email for press and a phone number.

Make sure to have at least two communication channels to give the readers some choice of how to get in touch.

Press Release Writing: Summary

So, to write a good press release for reputation management:

  • Define a single main goal and use it to guide the structure
  • Make a focused and short headline
  • Add some keywords to optimize for Google
  • Write an introductory section for readers in a hurry
  • Use a news writing style and tone
  • Add multiple contact details at the end.

Take some time to read examples to get used to press release writing. That style might look challenging, but getting it right can help you manage your reputation like big successful companies.

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