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How to write a good press release yourself

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how to write a press release
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As an editor I’m bombarded with hundreds of press releases daily. But I must admit I don’t read them. Very rarely something  grabs my attention, or I spot an opportunity for a great story but then I feel I have to hunt for it, which sometimes I don’t have time to do. A lost opportunity. I get asked a lot about how to write a press release.  I even get asked to correct press releases and make them better. And so here I’m sharing my tips and offering you the framework of a good press release, which you can take as a guide. Please note that I work predominantly with small independent designers and lifestyle (fashion, homeware, beauty) brands.

THE “NO ONE CARES” MINDSET

First of all, when it comes to writing a press release, or any communication between you and your customer or you and press in fact, you have to realise one thing: no one cares. So you launched a new collection or have this amazing product – who cares? There are tons of others doing exactly the same thing. No one cares. Get into the mindset. As soon as you accept this notion, your attitude to writing your press release should change. 

Instead of sitting down and writing “how excited” you are “to launch” your latest product, think about how to write a copy that would make people care. How would you draw attention to it? What would be the key element around which you can build the copy. Think about it in a quiet place with no other distractions.

THE ANGLE

There are several angles of how you can approach writing your press release. For example:

1. Educational – this is where you share information or tips related to your market or product/brand

2. Inspiring  – this is where you share an interesting story related to your product and/or your brand

3. Aspirational – this is where you build an aspirational picture or story related to your product/brand

THE FRAMEWORK

I like to divide my press release into 5 parts:

1. Powerful introduction with a title
The first couple of sentences are critical to grabbing attention. Include most important points in this section. Avoid using:
…excited to introduce you to my latest…
…announcing a highly anticipated …
Newly launched AW18 …
I think you might be interested in this …
I think your readers will love …
Something for you to consider for your next article …

Instead try:

Did you know that when you …
According to … remains to be …
How I went from … to …
Inspired by … I decided to …
I founded …as I couldn’t find …

Example:
Handbag collection inspired by the decadence of Persia

The (brand’s name) luxury handbag label was born from its founder’s lifetime of travel and is heavily influenced by the rich decadence of Persia, her native home.

2. The supporting information  
Three to four additional paragraphs with details and supporting information about the product. Describe the WHAT AND WHY in more detail (don’t forget to include colour options, pattern design, product categories),  followed by WHEN AND WHERE. If it’s a new product or collection, specify its availability. If necessary list your biggest (strongest) stockists.

Example:
The (brand’s name) aesthetic is bold, contemporary and full of surprise. The collection is wholly inspired by architecture and unique references from Persian heritage – the architectural lines of the Azadi Tower & pillars form key shapes within the range. Persian geometric motifs inspire engraving on fittings and street style aesthetics have been lifted from the women of Tehran, whose love of statement style grip this collection. Other inspirations include the work of female photographer Shirana Shahbazi and graphic designer Yusef Alahmad.

Colour options across all include anything from the chalky white stone of the Azadi Tower through to the blue of dusk sky, metallics & jewel tones. The finest of Italian nappa leather is given a twist of magic, with textured and metallic leathers, which collide for a unique polished finish. All products are manufactured in Europe to the highest level, using the same screen printers as Erdem, Katranzou & House of Hackney.

3. Founder’s or designer’s quote
Always include your quote which I can use immediately in my article. Be useful. Summarise in your own words how you feel about the product or collection. Maybe mention your inspiration, describe briefly your challenges and the outcome. Take me on a mini journey using your own words.

Example:
“Poverty in Iran is very close to my heart. My aim is not only to design beautiful luxury statement collections reflecting my heritage but also to educate and help people in need. I found a personal need to launch (brands’s name) since for many years I was frustrated with… “

4. Our story
Briefly describe your brand’s story, its concept, mission and vision. What are your values, what do you stand for as a brand.

Example:
This is a label built with passion, trust, openness with its partners and ultimately its end consumer. With humble beginnings in Persia to its very own bijou design studio in deepest Wales, (brand’s founder)  is creating a pathway to success in UK territories and beyond. Her vision relays deeply upon outstanding design first, closely followed by a conscience to be socially aware.

5. Notes to editors (samples text):

High resolution lifestyle and product cut-outs are available for download in Dropbox (link) and all products featured are available for press loans. For further information and interview with, please contact:
Name
Email
Phone number

Final advice
So here it is, a guide on how to write a press release yourself. Before I go, my final advice is: give it some personality. Don’t be afraid to write as you speak. Make it relatable. Think about who you’re targeting, who will be reading your press release but also think about your customer and their problems or frustrations and how your brand, collection or product can help to solve that problem.

Another press release example including with images.

Want to be part of a group of like-minded creatives who are going through what you’re going through? We have an amazing community of emerging designers, interior designers, stylists, fashion accessory brands, artists and photographers, where we help each other grow. This is where I encourage sharing knowledge and brand collaborations. No fakes, self-centred liars and backstabbers are allowed. Please join us here. And, feel free to share if you found this useful!

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