What is a press release?



Press release guidelines - it includes:

Þ    A compelling headline.

Þ    A first paragraph that covers who, what, where, when and why.

Þ    Email address and phone number for the press contact, and website address of the company.  Mention clients or endorsement from a “neutral” source like a university professor or reviewer (with their permission).

Þ    A short paragraph about the company. If the press release is about an author or entertainer, include career details.

How to format a release

1. First line: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE in caps.

2. Allow one spacer line then write a headline using a combination of lower case and capital letters. Keep your headline to ten words or less.

3. Allow another empty line for spacing and begin the text with the city and province, followed by a dash. All releases must include a date since reporters do not always use releases immediately.

4. Include press contact information below the text of the news release. A reporter reading your release should be able to make a decision about your story at first glance. Don't waste that space with contact information. They will scroll down to find out who to contact if they want to follow up with you.

6) Finally, close the document with the characters -30- or ### which are style conventions that let the reader know s/he has reached the end of the story.[i]


“Writers, like teeth, are divided into incisors and grinders.”

Walter Bagehot



[i] Adapted from http://www.cambridgeesol.org/teach/fce/writing/activities/check_edit.cfm

http://www.xpresspress.com/PRnotes.html – press releases







Sally Jennings is an enthusiastic editor, writer, teacher, traveller and urban planner. She has edited academic papers and books, fiction and non-fiction for much of the last two centuries.


PTO Editing: www.pto-editing.com

Contact: pto_edit@yahoo.ca