December 14, 2013
SAN FRANCISCO/MONTREAL (RPRN) 12/14/13 — How to write a captivating press release!
Everyone loves a great story and too many of today's press releases suffer from being a complete snooze.
From sitting on grandpa’s lap and hearing tales of yore to discussing a weekend adventure around the water cooler, a good story and a good storyteller captures the attention and provokes the imagination or thoughts of the listener. In the same way, press releases need to build a connection to the reader and keep him or her thinking. With the social media boom, sending out your message is much easier than in the past. In this flood of information, yours needs to stand out. What can we learn from storytelling?
1. Know whom you’re talking to. Grandpa lowered his tone when speaking to his grandkids. Your coworker opens his water cooler story with an enthusiastic, “you won’t believe what I did this weekend!” In the same way, your release needs to set the tone early for whom it is is trying to address. Will you need to speak in more simplistic terms? Will you need to use more technical jargon? Will you need to keep it on a serious note? Consider these qualities when starting your story.
2. Know how long your story needs to be. Will it need plenty of descriptors? Quick details? Imagine how long your attention span would hold up under the same situation.
3. Use quotes sparingly, or not at all. Telling your audience that so-and-so thinks such-and-such is a great product/innovation/technique is not really telling them anything. It’s an endorsement. If your quote has new information or is unusually entertaining, add it, by all means.
4. Add a graphic or video. This will break up the monotony of text and give the reader’s brain a chance to explore the message in a different medium. Picture books entertained us as children and coffee table books tell a story through their impressive illustrations. Why not adapt media to tell your story?
5. Wrap it up. All of the greatest stories have a thought-provoking endings; all the best jokes have snappy punch lines. Aim to tie up the story efficiently with something that the reader will take with him or her or that he or she will reflect upon.
With these techniques in mind, try authoring your release from a storyteller’s perspective. Readers will sit up and take notice and become storytellers of their own by sharing or commenting on your release.
And if you ever need help telling your story, contact our editorial team and we will write it up for you! Start by answering our 5W and we will do the rest.
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