How To

Published on April 11th, 2008 | by Maryanne Conlin

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How to Write a Press Release In The Internet Age

megaphone.jpgAs a blogger and freelance journalist, I receive several to many press releases a day, promoting all sorts of products, web sites and events. As a marketing consultant, I write press releases for my clients and struggle with the time and energy that goes into creating something which, well… often isn’t read.

Silicon Valley Watcher, Tom Foremski puts it nicely:

Press releases are nearly useless. They typically start with a tremendous amount of top-spin, they contain pat-on-the-back phrases and meaningless quotes…

Press releases are created by committees, edited by lawyers, and then sent out at great expense through Businesswire or PRnewswire to reach the digital and physical trash bins of tens of thousands of journalists.

As a blogger who struggles with extracting something resembling meaningful information from press releases and hunting down additional sources for links, I would welcome a little more user friendly release.

As a consumer tired of reading the exact same thing on every news source, I’d welcome giving journalists and bloggers the time to really investigate the story rather than spending their time finding images and links… then we just might have some interesting information!

(If you want an example of how news sources information verbatim, take a look at this story I did for our sister blog, Eco Child’s Play. I seem to be the only writer who actually asked Toys R Us where these new Eco toys were made (China). Everyone else spent so much time hunting down images and links they had little time to look a little deeper into the story.)

Eco-businesses in particular, as they often have to explain in some detail the technical aspects of the business and frequently rely on social media to get the message out, need to be concerned with crafting an internet friendly release.

Well, it turns out, the folks at Shift Media have devised a new template that revolutionizes the way press releases are written.

In a podcast with Paul Dunay posted at MarketingProfs’ Daily Fix blog, SHIFT principal Todd Defern explains the new template’s purpose:

“Ultimately is simply a way to both Web-ify the content that you put in a news release, and also, ideally, to socialize it. So it’s about adding multimedia, making sure these things are more findable that they’ve ever been before in the age of Google, but also giving some community and context aspects to it as well. Letting people potentially comment on the news, or take and remix aspects of the news and put it on their own blog… and discuss it and find it among their own friends.”

It’s about time!

Photo courtesy: Standford.edu www.stanford.edu

Related Posts:

PR Tips For Green Entrepreneurs

Target Practice – Finding The Right Green Consumer

Using The Web To Grow your Green Business

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About the Author

Hear Maryanne speak on Social Media for Socially Conscious Brands at Expo East on September 27th! Maryanne Conlin is CPG brand marketer and digital marketing expert, CEO of RedRopes Digital and Partner Digital Strategy, 4GreenPs. A Shorty Award winner for best Green Content on Twitter, she was a member of the IAA team that won the Green Award in 2010 and most recently was a finalist for the PRSA - Los Angeles PRISM awards for social media. She and her team focus on providing strategic marketing direction, custom content for web, mobile and social platforms, social media community management and online promotions and digital advertising solutions for companies in the green, food and Hispanic space. Follow her on Twitter @maryanneconlin



  • I too wear the hats of both a blogger and a green business consultant, thanks for this useful resource!

  • Finally a article / post that has answered my questions. Thanks friend.

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