When your business does something newsworthy, writing and distributing a press release is an excellent option for spreading the word.

However, journalists don’t solely rely on the newswire for story leads. They receive a constant stream of emails, phone calls and social media posts that feed them newsworthy information, which can make it a lot harder for your press release to stand out. With the right strategies, however, you can craft an effective, engaging press release, one that not only lands you media coverage, but helps you build a reputation.

The experts of Young Entrepreneur Council know how important it is to put a lot of thought and strategy into your media outreach efforts. To help you with your next press release, they shared five essential elements that you shouldn’t forget before you hit “send.” Here is what they advise:

1. Use A Professional Tone

Use a professional tone and avoid technical jargon. Instead, use simple language that your target audience can understand. Always write in the third person. Keep it short and simple. Be concise and to-the-point. Remember to proofread and have someone else proofread as well before submitting. – Jessica BakerAligned Signs

2. Make Your Point In The First Paragraph

It is crucial not only to be able to formulate a strong headline which will bring in press but to also have the facts to back it up. The last thing you want to do is attract attention and then leave the press hanging. Doing so will damage your reputation and attract the wrong sort of attention moving forward. That, or the press will share your incomplete information, and the audience they share it with will not be moved. You need to pack the strongest punch possible so that the press comes and then delivers to their readership. Start with a strong, interesting headline, and get to the point in your first paragraph. Everyone, even the press, has a shorter attention span nowadays, and you don’t want to keep them waiting. Deliver facts, numbers and quotes, and then share your contact information. – Bryan DriscollThink Big Marketing, LLC

3. Include Hard Data, Quotes And A CTA

After two decades of experience as both a journalist receiving press releases and writing them for my business and clients, a simple formula that works, one that I learned from Cameron Harold, best-selling author and former COO at 1-800-GOT-JUNK? Use a catchy headline and equally catchy lead paragraph that summarizes the product or service. Next, expose a problem, and show how your product or service can solve that problem. Follow this with some hard data or facts, and a quote from an upper in the company, such as a CEO. Then use a quote from a customer or influencer, and always close with a call to action—like email (exact address) to start using this service/product today. And always include an “About (company name)” at the bottom of each press release. – Ron LiebackContentMender

4. Write For A Publication, Not A Newswire

Press releases are written for media and need to quickly and efficiently articulate solid information. The header can be catchy. The opening paragraph must integrate who, what, when, where and why. Find a hard, relevant, credible statistic (or two) and add with the source(s). Always include one to two quotes, one from the business, one from the other company/organization if applicable. These can be “angled” with the message you are trying to convey. This is the art of publicity. Always include boilerplates for companies involved. Be sure it is written in AP Style. Distribution on newswires rarely results in media coverage. – Angela DelmedicoElev8 Consulting Group

5. Write Like A Real Person

The internet is full of noise. Millions of articles and press releases are published every day, and most people (even within the target audience) will never read them. Why? Because the material is written in a way that’s boring, monotonous and sounds like a machine regurgitating facts and statistics. If you want your content to get noticed, write like a real person. Make it fun! Surprise your readers. Try to connect with them beyond the cold, hard facts of a press release and give them a reason to read to the end (because they want to, not because they have to). At the end of the day, any piece of written content is intended for the eyes of humans—so get creative and make an effort to appeal to every person’s humanness. – Seth WilliamsREtipster Publishing LLC

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