How to write a good press release

Over the many years, we made some experiences and had a lot of learnings with writing good press releases. Here’s the main points in a checklist:

Content and Messaging:

  1. Clear and Concise Message: Is the main message or announcement clearly stated in the headline and opening paragraph?
  2. Relevance: Is the content of the press release relevant and of interest to the target audience?
  3. Key Information: Does the press release include who, what, when, where, why, and how details?
  4. Quotes: Are there quotes from relevant sources that add credibility and context to the story?
  5. Language and Tone: Is the language professional, concise, and appropriate for the audience?
  6. Jargon and Acronyms: Have industry-specific jargon and acronyms been explained for those not familiar with them? Does something need translation?

Structure and Format:

  1. Headline: Is the headline attention-grabbing, accurate, and limited to around 5-10 words?
  2. Opening Paragraph (Lead): Does the opening paragraph succinctly summarize the main story elements?
  3. Body: Is the press release organized in a logical sequence, presenting the most important information first?
  4. Length: Is the press release ideally between 3000 and 4000 characters (~500-600 words)? Check every sentence for words that can be removed without loosing content or style. Remove any redundancy.
  5. Subheadings: Are subheadings used to break up the content and guide readers through the release?

Grammar and Clarity:

  1. Grammar and Spelling: Have you thoroughly checked for grammatical errors, typos, and misspellings? Has Autocorrect, grammar checks and ChatGPT beautify been used? Check again, if yes.
  2. Clarity: Is the writing clear and easy to understand, even for those without prior knowledge of the subject matter? Have an uninformed colleague read it before sending and hear their feedback.
  3. Active Voice: Is the content primarily written in the active voice for stronger and clearer statements? Passive voice is only meant to cloak the subject of a sentence, to hide the actor.

Media and Contact Information:

  1. Media Elements: Are images, videos, or infographics included to enhance visual appeal and storytelling?
  2. Boilerplate: Does the press release include a brief boilerplate about the company, its mission, and relevant details?
  3. Contact Information: Is the contact information for media inquiries clearly provided, including a name, email, and phone number?

Additional Considerations:

  1. Accuracy: Have all facts, figures, and statistics been verified for accuracy?
  2. Quotations: Are any quotations attributed correctly and properly contextualized? Check quotation marks according to your language and style.
  3. Credibility: Does the press release cite credible sources or provide data to support claims?
  4. Legal Compliance: Is the press release compliant with all relevant legal and regulatory guidelines?
  5. Timing: Is the timing of the press release aligned with the event or announcement it pertains to?
  6. Formatting: Is the press release properly formatted, including consistent font styles and spacing?
  7. Proofreading: Have you proofread the press release multiple times to catch any remaining errors?
  8. Feedback: Have colleagues or peers reviewed the press release for additional insights and feedback?

We’re constantly updating this list, feel free to send us your feedback!