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Crafting the Perfect Press Release


Jan 0001
How to write product and business announcements that command attention

KAREN A. NEWMAN, GROUP PUBLISHER, karen.newman@photonics.com

Aug. 1, 2013 — Press releases are more than words and pictures, more than a list of stats and applications: Press releases are a company’s link to the world. They give outsiders an inside glimpse at the results of the hard work you do day in and day out. Press releases can show customers just why your product is the only solution to their problems – but to do that, they have to get noticed by editors who could publish them.

And to get noticed, they have to be accurate, timely and complete, and accompanied by an attractive, high-resolution photo (not just a logo).

Photonics Media’s editors receive thousands of press releases every month. Most of these fall into one of two categories: product announcements or business news. If you want to make sure yours are among the golden few selected for publication in print and/or online, follow these simple guidelines.

New products should state clearly what the product is. If it’s a new model of an existing product, specify the product itself. Summarize the most important facts and specifications about the product. List all potential applications and industries that could benefit from this product. Tell us what makes this product special. What sets it apart? Does it save time, money or space? Is it sturdier than other similar devices? Does it replace another technology or use a new manufacturing process? Include an email address so our readers can contact you for more information.

Business announcements should start with the news. Many begin with paragraphs about what the company does before any mention of the new CEO, the expanded facility, the merger or the quarterly results. But you don’t want to bury the lead, as journalists say: Put it front and center. You can add the details about the company itself in a subsequent paragraph.

Here are some general dos and don’ts for any press release, whether it’s a product or business announcement:

DO be specific. Include all relevant details in the announcement.

DO use clear, concise language.

DO spell out abbreviations.

DO include a hi-res photo. We’ll need the image in high resolution in order to publish it in print. To save time, please send it on the first contact.

DON’T send just a link to the press release.

DON’T send only a catchall newsletter that announces several new products at once. When we get these, we aren’t sure which product you want to highlight.

DON’T list just a Web address or a press contact; include an email address where our readers should contact you.

Most importantly, DO remember your audience. Photonics Media’s publications reach a wide range of your customers. What do they need to know right now?

Please note that we cannot promise publication of any press release in any specific issue of the magazine – in fact, we get so many every day that we can’t guarantee publication at all. But if you craft your releases according to our guidelines and send them in as soon as they’re ready, you’re much more likely to see your news in print (and online). And so are our readers. Who are, by the way, your customers.

Thought LeadershipEditorial CoveragePress Releases

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