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MyPRGenie Offers How-To List on Writing Press Releases for Small Businesses


SB Informer
Friday, August 24, 2007; 02:32 AM

More and more small businesses are bypassing high-priced traditional public relations firms for the less expensive and more efficient option of online press release distribution, provided by services like MyPRGenie. With that trend in mind, MyPRGenie has come up with a top-10 list of tips for writing press releases.

Top 10 Press-Release Writing Tips

10. Always include the basic information. Every press release should include the name of a person to contact for more information, along with his or her job title, phone number(s) and e-mail address. You should also include a dateline—the date of the press release and the town or city where the news is occurring, a headline that briefly summarizes the news and an "about us" paragraph that summarizes the subject of the press release, providing background information on the company or person or event, including website(s) where the reader can go for more information.

9. Avoid jargon. Don't assume that your audience will understand technical language or industry terms. More often than not, they won't. Write as if you are describing your news to a fifth grader.

8. Get to the point. Also keep in mind that your reader probably has very little patience. Draw them in with a lead paragraph that is both catchy and brief, summing up the story or giving them enough of a taste that they will want to read on.

7. Spelling counts. So does grammar. It may not be fair, but typos and writing slipups reflect poorly on you and your credibility. So make sure you double- and triple-check for mistakes, and an extra set of eyes is always recommended. Even the best editors need editors.

6. The five Ws. As the Journalism 101 professors will tell you, a news story should answer the questions of who, what, when, where, why and how? Answer those questions in your press release.

5. Watch your words. Make sure that every fact in your press release can be verified, and that every person or company named in your release has given their permission for what you are writing about them. Don't embellish—your readers will sniff it out, and you'll be discredited.

4. People count. When possible, try to include people in your story. People are more interesting than processes or inanimate objects, and readers relate to other people. If you can, include a personal anecdote or description of how your news affects people, including the readers.

3. Use quotes. Direct quotations from the key people involved in the news of your press release--provided those quotes are conversational and interesting--help draw the reader in. Make sure they are brief and don't sound as if they were written by a contract attorney.

2. Answer the question: "What is the news here?" Keep in mind that your audience is a journalist or website reader who is interested in the news story that you are hopefully delivering through your press release. They will not respond to a sales pitch or a lecture. Build your story around a news hook, or the reason that this is news: an upcoming event, an award, a milestone, an announcement, or the release of a new product or service, for example.

1. Just the facts, ma'am. Get to the point, and don't let florid descriptive language get in the way of the story. You've only got 400 words or so to tell your story, so make every word count.

About MyPRGenie
MyPRGenie is the world's first on-demand provider of public relations services that allows the client to deliver press releases in the form of PDFs, text or photos to the target audience for maximum visibility. MyPRGenie offers free press release posting on its website, search engine optimization, RSS feeds, media release distribution to thousands of websites and media outlets, and website traffic tracking and reporting for the releases.

For more information on MyPRGenie, visit the website, www.myprgenie.com or call 212-807-8300.



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