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Carolyn Moncel

25 Reasons to Write a Press Release

 

by Carolyn Moncel

Where should I look to find story ideas for my press releases? It's a question that a local web designer asked me recently during a client meeting. My advice to him would apply to any small-business owner. Start by looking at yourself and your company because like everything else in life, the best ideas are often found right under your nose. The same can be said for story ideas for press releases.

 

After that meeting I couldn't stop thinking about all the media opportunities many small-business owners often miss. Most of the time, the problem occurs because business owners think that journalists are only interested in big, splashing events and press conferences. They waste so much time waiting for a "real reason" to surface before contacting the media that they end up receiving no coverage at all.

 

Keep in mind that what journalists really want is a good story to share with their listeners or readers. Most business owners fail to realize that they already have "real reasons" to write press releases. Evidence of their companies' uniqueness and triumphs are waiting to be transformed into great stories. All they need to do is take time to reflect and jot down those ideas that could result in favorable media coverage for their businesses.

 

Consider these ten reasons below, and if you need 15 more, then download the PDF document at the end of this article.

 

    1. Starting a new business - the more unique and unusual the business the better

    2. Introducing a new product or service to the marketplace

    3. Launching a new web site

    4. Winning a high profiled client account or contract

    5. Meeting an unusual challenge or overcoming adversity - "Industry insiders said it couldn't be done, but we did it!"

    6. Participating in a philanthropic event -- your business has been named to serve in a leadership position in a community, professional or charitable organization

    7. Sponsoring a workshop, seminar, or conference

    8. Announcing polling or product survey results conducted by your company

    9. Changing the company name, location, web address or a product name

    10. Publicizing the changing of the guards in a family owned business - the son or daughter becomes the new company president after father or mother retires

 

Now that you have potentially 25 reasons for writing a press release, don't just file them away and forget about them. Print out the list, and post it some place in your office so that you're constantly reminded to review them and put the ideas into action.

 

Here's a great exercise to help you get started.

 

Check the list of 25 story ideas and compare them against the articles found in the local and business news sections of your morning paper. Do this for about a week so that you become more comfortable looking for story ideas within the news. You'll be surprised by how many stories are actually generated from ideas just like the ones listed here. You might even find a dozen more ideas that are not even on the list. If so expand your list to include the new ideas as well.

 

Next, go back over the list of story ideas and think about each one within the context of your own company. Jot down any notes for specific stories involving your own business next to each entry. With a bit more research, you can most likely use any of those ideas as the basis for a future press release.

 

The bottom line is this. It really isn't that difficult to find reasons to write press releases about your company. Just remember that almost any type of company news is a good excuse for writing a press release - as long as the release is well written, has news value and speaks to the intended audience. Give it a try. Once you do, you could be on the path to creating a steady stream of memorable media coverage for your company.

 

Notable PR Resource:

 

Carolyn Davenport-Moncel is president and founder of Mondavé Communications, a global marketing and communications firm based in Chicago and Paris, and a subsidiary of MotionTemps, LLC.
Contact her by
e-mail.
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Do you have a media relations question? Ask Carolyn! Your questions could be featured in an up-coming article. If you enjoy reading the Shoestring PR articles then sign up for our monthly articles via email or visit our Mondavé Communications blog - it's free!

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