Skip to main content

Once your digital PR campaign is nearing the final stages and you have some great stats, amazing designs, and a great blog or onsite content it’s time to write a press release to summarise your story.

Your press release needs to be super engaging and concise, with a killer hook that will immediately grab the attention of both journalists and your target audience.

But how do you write a press release that increases your chance of successful coverage? At connective3, we have several steps which we carefully follow to write a killer press release for the UK.

The preferred press release format

Think of a press release structure as the inverted pyramid. You want to start your story strong, encouraging your readers and journalists to read on.

Although it’s a good format to follow, remember that all press releases should be distinct and unique. The inverted pyramid structure doesn’t work for all stories, sometimes you need to take a different, creative approach.

Are you a retail brand with new products coming out? Take a reactive approach where you write about your product, e.g., a new card range, and include search data. This kind of press release doesn’t need to be two pages long, with lots of data and expert comments. Instead, it can be straight to the point and introduce your product with a comment from your brand manager about the new product.

Inverted pyramid for press releases

When writing your press release, you should first and foremost ask the following questions:

  • Who conducted the study/research in your story? Who is your target audience?
  • What has the brand or business done to make this newsworthy? What is the story’s purpose (the hook)? Do you want to cause a reaction in your audience, if so, what emotion?
  • Where did you conduct your research? Always ensure to use the correct source material and trustworthy sites.
  • When is your story set? If you’re creating a campaign in the lead-up to Christmas, or a holiday, make sure this is clear in your press release.
  • Why should your target audience pay attention to your story?
  • How will your story impact your target audience? Knowing this is important to write with the right tone of voice and shape your story accordingly.

In terms of how long your press release should be, a rule of thumb is to limit your press release to 1.5-2 pages, excluding boilerplate and imagery. This doesn’t apply to all press releases, because it depends on Sometimes they can be three pages long, and other times just a single page.

Strengthening your press release

A lot of client campaigns are data-led, with data gathered through avenues such as surveys, secondary desk research, certified sources (e.g. YouGov and Statista), and internal data. But what is the best practice for presenting this within a press release?

When it comes to sharing data in your press release, the simpler is (sometimes) the better. If you’re including tables, keep them basic and easy to follow. Don’t overwhelm with colours and fonts. Stick to standard fonts, such as Times New Roman or Calibri.

Remember that you don’t have to include all your data. Often, you will have an abundance of research, but not everything will be relevant. Pick and choose the statistics that make the press release engaging and condense the data where possible.

One trend we’re seeing at connective3 is that journalists are looking for more expert comments. Adding an expert comment from your in-house team or external experts can help strengthen your campaign’s validity.

How to write an eye-catching headline

Ensure you check in regularly with the SEO team on your account to be sure that your content is optimised and in line with organic objectives – making your press release work harder to help improve overall performance.

Here are a few questions you may want to ask yourself:

  • Have we included target keyword areas within the content? If not, how can these be weaved in?
  • How relevant is the story to the brand? We may sometimes need to tweak the story to improve relevancy.
  • Could the story negatively position the brand or could the journalist take it out of context?
  • Have we included links back to the website and any target categories or pages within the press release?
  • Is it worth running the press release past the SEO to get their thoughts?

At the end of your press release, you need to include a boilerplate about your brand/client and a methodology if you include any data and expert commentary. With all this in mind, you should be able to write that killer press release that’ll attract journalists and your target audience to your story and campaign.

The press release template

Press Release Template

If you want to learn more about successful campaigns, be sure to check out the digital PR team’s previous work or visit us on LinkedIn to keep yourself updated on industry news from our team.