Are YOU Press Release Ready?

By
Home Stager with HOME BRANDERS / DIXIELAND HOME DESIGN

Are you press release ready??? This is an important component of your marketing efforts. Many of you probably know this, but for those of you that do not, here's a sample outline from www.marketingsource.com that I found to help you write one of these! Write one and keep it handy. 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:



CONTACT:
Contact Person
Company Name
Voice Phone Number
FAX Number
Email Address
Website URL

XYZ, Inc. Announces Widget to Maximize Customer Response Rate


This headline is one of the most important components of the press release as this needs to "grab the attention" of the editor. It should be in bold type and a font that is larger than the body text. Preferred type fonts are Arial, Times New Roman, or Verdana. Keep the headline to 80-125 characters maximum. Capitalize every word with the exception of "a", "the" "an" or any word that is three characters or less.

<City>, <State>, <Date> - Your first paragraph of the release should be written in a clear and concise manner. The opening sentence contains the most important information; keep it to 25 words or less. Never take for granted that the reader has read your headline. It needs contain information that will "entice" the reader. Remember, your story must be newsworthy and factual; don't make it a sales pitch or it will end up in the trash.

Answer the questions "who", "what", "when", "where", "why" and "how". Your text should include pertinent information about your product, service or event. If writing about a product, make sure to include details on when the product is available, where it can be purchased and the cost. If you're writing about an event, include the date, location of the event and any other pertinent information. You should include a quote from someone that is a credible source of information; include their title or position with the company, and why they are considered a credible source. Always include information on any awards they have won, articles they've published or interviews they have given.

Keep your sentences and paragraphs short; a paragraph should be no more than 3-4 sentences. Your release should be between 500 to 800 words, written in a word processing program, and spell checked for errors. Don't forget to proofread for grammatical errors. The mood of the release should be factual, not hyped; don't use a sales pitch as it will ruin your credibility with the reader.

The last paragraph before the company information should read: For additional information on (put in the subject of this release), contact "name" or visit www.yoururl.com. If you offer a sample, copy or demo, put the information in here. You can also include details on product availability, trademark acknowledgment, etc. in this area of the release.

ABOUT <COMPANY> - Include a brief description of your company along with the products and services it provides.

- END -

At the end of the release, you need to indicate that the release is ended. This lets the journalists know they have received the entire release. Type "End" on the first line after your text is completed. If your release goes over one page, type "MORE" at the bottom of the first page.

 

 

Below is a sample of one of our press releases we sent out last year. This press release has gotten us on TV 5 times and in 4 different local publications. It also helped me to get a local weekly column in our newspaper here! I emailed this to every TV, Radio and written publication in town AS well as mailing it. This can really help everyone get GREAT exposure!!!! Take my advice and keep a written press release handy! :)

 



 

 

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Show All Comments
Rainer
120,294
Fernando Rosado
West Palm Beach, FL
561-906-0050 or 561-840-8950
Thank You Amber. I can use this, what a great idea. thank you for the example
Jan 24, 2008 10:03 PM #1
Rainer
53,919
Kimberly Uksik
Independent - Pickering, ON
Home Stager - Durham, Toronto, On.
Thanks for posting this Amber. 
Jan 25, 2008 05:28 AM #2
Rainer
79,709
Kristina Leone
Lionheart Home Staging, LLC - Minneapolis, MN
Great information, Amber!  Thanks for sharing!
Jan 25, 2008 09:01 AM #3
Rainer
21,743
Liz Carla
Ebby Halliday - Dallas, TX
Amber, Where did you send your press release? I live in Dallas and the big paper here said they didn't do press releases on new businesses.
Jan 25, 2008 09:03 AM #4
Rainer
3,138
Holly Klaus
Room Revisions - Fredericksburg, VA
Room Revisions
Hi Amber, Thanks for this post, I've been thinking about doing a press release.  So, you sent this same article to several publications and they all printed it?  The editors don't mind that the article is in other publications?  I don't really know the politics involved in doing this, thanks for your help! :)
Jan 25, 2008 09:50 AM #5
Rainer
12,947
Amber Langston
HOME BRANDERS / DIXIELAND HOME DESIGN - Little Rock, AR

Fernando, Kimberly and Kristina- Thank you guys for posting!!

Liz and Holly- Dallas is quite a bit larger than Little Rock and I am not sure how we compare to Fredericksburg Holly - but here is how I do this. In Little Rock, we have one state-wide newspaper: Arkansas Democrat Gazette. I sent my press release to the Real Estate Editor there. My column is published only in Central Arkansas since other areas of the state have different Real Estate Sections. Send your press release to the following:

1. Your "big" paper: Go online or call and ask who the real estate editor is. You can get their email address. Email your press release to them and write a note to them in the email explaining what you do. If you want to try and get a column, just let them know that you have so much valuable info to give to the local public..yada...yada...yada.  Ask if they can squeeze in a small column where you give some advice on selling a home. I started this process in March of last year with our editor and it FINALLY happened in May. This takes time and persistance, but it is worth it. ALSO send a release to the editor, managing editors in other sections of your big paper: business, local section, etc. Every paper is different, but my thought is that you BLANKET every section with your release...sending to as many people as you can find online and something is bound to come up. Many times the editor's info (phone, email, etc.) is located in the paper itself. 

2. Smaller papers: In Central Arkansas we have several smaller papers. For example...there is a small community 10 minutes outside of Little Rock called Maumelle. Maumelle has it's own paper. Sometimes these smaller papers will be much more willing to do a small story on your company. You can also find alot of info online about who to contact.

3. Trade publications: Most Builders Associations and Real Estate Associations have publications. Send press releases to these people as well.

4. Local TV Stations: Here, we have 5. I went onto all of their websites and found email addresses for the editors, managing editors, etc, of all the different shows....you can email all of the people AND even the anchors.

5. We also have a "Daily Record" publication that goes out to many professionals....lawyers, real estate agents, etc. Most cities have this.

6. We also have an Arkansas Business Publication...many of you may have something like this. Again, smaller publications are more likely to put you in there.

7. Magazines...many of you may have a publication similar to ours...it's called "At Home In Arkansas." It's a state-wide publication all about design, the home, etc. Send a release to these people as well.  

 

The key here is to blanket as many people as you can. This takes a little bit of work, but it's well worth it even if you get on ONE tv show or publication. Many people will not take your press release and reproduce it directly..but rather call you and set up a time to meet and do a story on you. I sent one of these to several of the assignment anchors in town and one of them called me back and wanted to do a story on us...they can out and actually did a before and after on a house we staged..I think I posted something on this last year.

 

On a side note- when I mail these (or email) I always include something colorful...like our newsletter...or something like that. It will help grab the attention of these guys who get press-releases all of the time.

 

The great thing about staging in most communities is that it's new and fresh and a PROBLEM SOLVER. There is a need to publicize it...so take full advantage of this! 

I HOPE this helps! Please feel free to email me if you guys need any further help. I worked at an ad agency prior to starting this company, so I can be a help in this department and I am glad to do it!

 

AMBER 

Jan 25, 2008 10:43 AM #6
Rainmaker
97,917
Kathleen Garvey
Coldwell Banker - Denver, CO
Denver's Neighborhood Expert - Listings & Sales
Thanks for the great information Amber!  I will be using this as a guide--just what I was looking for this week!!  Regards-Kathleen G
Jan 25, 2008 04:24 PM #7
Rainmaker
486,470
Kathy Nielsen
http://atlantahomestaging.net - Marietta, GA
Atlanta Georgia Home Stager

Great post, Amber.  I wish I could rate this as I would have given it a 10.  Thanks for sharing.

Kathy

Jan 25, 2008 04:40 PM #8
Rainer
21,743
Liz Carla
Ebby Halliday - Dallas, TX
Amber, Thank you so much for taking the time to give all those details. You are so sweet to do this!
Jan 25, 2008 06:53 PM #9
Rainer
12,947
Amber Langston
HOME BRANDERS / DIXIELAND HOME DESIGN - Little Rock, AR

Kathleen- I am so glad I could help!

 

Kathy- you are sweet. :)

 

Liz- NO problem!!

 

Amber 

Jan 25, 2008 07:09 PM #10
Rainer
52,988
Abby Roselli
ALR Home Staging and Showcasing, LLC - Staten Island, NY
Staten Island Home Stager

Girl, I was just reading about writing press releases yesterday...you were feelin' my vibe, weren't you?  LOL  Thanks so much for sharing this...awesome post!

Jan 25, 2008 08:20 PM #11
Rainer
18,258
Isabel Gomes
Gomes Design - London, ON
Interior Decorator, Stager - London, Ont
Thank you Amber for sharing this valuble information.
Jan 25, 2008 09:01 PM #12
Rainmaker
1,035,039
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
New Hampshire Home Stager
Amber this is great...I've been wanting to write a release and just didn't know enough of the details.  Now I feel inspired.  Thanks for sharing!
Feb 19, 2008 06:07 PM #13
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