5 things manufacturers need to know about writing press releases
As the former editor of a trade magazine, I’m afraid I have some bad news
Your press release isn’t just a needle in a haystack. It’s a needle in a stack of needles in a compression tank at the bottom of the ocean. If you don’t pitch your press release at the right level, your message will sink like a stone.
But here’s the positive: Get your press release right, and you could be landing stories at major publications that will raise your brand awareness, drive interested parties to join your network and ultimately help grow your business.
To stay afloat, manufacturers need to pitch the right stories to the right people at the right time. (Or they can speak to an award-winning marketing team with years of experience, of course).
Without further ado, here’s our top tips for writing an absolute corker of a press release.
Make your story newsworthy
Manufacturers sometimes fall into the trap of pumping out the same old sales angles in their press releases. Unfortunately, ‘we’ve just launched product X’ or ‘we’ve just hired a new Y’ isn’t going to cut it.
A good press release doesn’t say ‘look how great our company is’. It says ‘look at this interesting story that will resonate with your readers’. You need to tie in your product with a newsworthy hook that will get an editor to look up from their third coffee of the day and pay attention.
Use statistics to engage, intrigue and add gravitas to what you are saying. Remember: the people you are targeting are looking for a good idea so they don’t have to think of one themselves. Hook them in with an exciting angle and an eye-catching headline, and they’ll thank you for it.
Research the publications you are targeting
Trade magazines are pitched at a high level. They often have longer periods between issues so that they can collate high-quality interviews, exclusive features and targeted content for people who really (and I mean really) care about the topic at hand.
Explore the topics that the biggest websites/digital publications are looking at, and ask how can you connect those topics to your brand. Take the time to actually research the publications you are targeting and what will be newsworthy to their target audience, both now and in the future.
Do this, and you will be able to come up with press release ideas that are far more likely to resonate with editors and gain coverage.
Check your copy for spelling mistakes
You’ve written a killer press release. It’s got stats up the wazoo, a killer intro and a Pulitzer-prize winning story at the centre.
Unfortunately, you’ve also left a typo in the headline. Oh dear.
Typos and grammatical errors drag your reader out of the story and break their trust. Research from Website Planet found that the bounce rate on landing pages with poor spelling and grammar was a whopping 85% more than those that had passed a spell check. Now imagine you are a busy editor with 100 emails – why read one with dodgy spelling?
Don’t write press releases in a vacuum; make sure you have someone to sense-check and spell check your work so you don’t have to send an embarrassing follow-up.
Break up your press release with multimedia content
A good press release shouldn’t just feature written copy. Injecting multimedia content amplifies your message and has been shown to increase press release views by as much as 3 times.
Photos and videos (that aren’t too long) are a fantastic way to encourage engagement with your press release – particularly if you are launching a new product. If you are including lots of statistics, consider creating a infographic to present them in a more eye-catching way.
If you can link to long-form content such as whitepapers and eBooks, this will make your press release and company seem trustworthy, authentic and much more knowledgeable, without cluttering the piece with reems of boring background.
Give a clear ‘call to action’
What is the purpose of your press release? Whether it’s getting people to arrange an interview, click through to your website or subscribe to your newsletter, make sure you are clear on the purpose before you start writing.
Most people won’t take the time to read the whole thing, so being concise is key. Pro tip: make sure that when you are linking you aren’t just trotting out the same old ‘for more information, click here’ spiel. Instead make your hyperlink compelling and to the point.
Work with a team of editors and journalists who really understand PR
Writing good press releases takes time. Manufacturers are often heavily focused on their operations, and their marketing suffers as a result. But what if you had a team of former journalists and editors on your side?
At Nutcracker, we know our way around a story, and pride ourselves on writing compelling, well-researched press releases that achieve results. We stay on top of industry news and trends and are always expanding our network with key influencers.
We’ve worked with manufacturers to completely relaunch their PR strategy. The result? Accelerated sales, industry awards and a loyal customer base.
Download our brand new guide to marketing for manufacturers, or book a consultation today and find out how Nutcracker can get you featured on the websites, podcasts and social media accounts your customers love.