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Ed the Webmaster

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Pressing the editor's button
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Kate the Webmistress

Offline promotion

Press the "release" button

It is no secret that newspaper and magazine editors welcome information provided by companies and organizations (press releases).

They have a lot of space to fill and only a limited time to fill it. Of course that's all very well, but what if you don't have a story of any interest to them? Read on...

What's your angle? Is your company involved in something newsworthy or unique? Are you "bucking the trend" i.e. are you taking/have you taken a differing route to success to that of your competitors? Maybe you have a high quality product or service that offers a better guarantee than anyone else?

Read about similar companies in trade journals. What were their angles? What made them newsworthy?

Ask your family, friends and colleagues what they feel is the most interesting aspect of the company. Their answers might surprise you. Get them to read the press release when it's complete and ask for honest comments, but also, most importantly, ask for criticism.

How do I press an editor's button?

  • Use a short catchy headline. This is by far the most important part of the press release. You have to catch attention with it and make the readers want to read the whole story. For instance, are you reading this article because you were curious what the headline, "Press the 'Release' Button", meant?

  • The lead paragraph is also very important and acts as the taster to the rest of the story.

  • Keep the paragraphs short and to the point.

  • Tell the editor the facts. Use the 5 Ws: who?, what?, where?, when? and why?

  • Is your story timely? Can you associate your business with ongoing or recent news events? If your industry is a current topic for discussion in the media, you could include a comment - or better still a headline - that ties the situation in with your company.

    For instance, during the early stages of the outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease, many dog-walking routes were closed. As a result, a hydrotherapy pool for dogs experienced a sudden surge in business. With a photograph of a puppy in water-wings, they managed to capture national attention in the UK with the headline: "Doggy Paddle".

  • Quote recent statistics about your industry that support your story.

  • Try to get a quote from an industry insider; they might welcome the publicity. (If you need a quote about Internet marketing, please e-mail me, Robert Brady, I'll be happy to help.)

  • Don't use the general name of your web-site in a press release. For instance, when I refer to's sister site, it's a lot easier for readers to find when on-line, rather than High Street Central.

  • Don't use an obvious sales pitch. Keep references to your company subtle and objective.

  • Include all contact details of your company in the press release so that an editor or journalist can contact you for further information or to arrange a photograph.

    Where is the editor's button?

    You can usually find the e-mail addresses of journalists and editors in their respective printed media, but also at media related web-sites.

    Press release resources

  • Canadian Newspapers - Internal Link
  • Gebbie Media Directory
  • I Boost
  • - USA Press releases
  • Magazine Sites - Internal Link
  • Media Hooks
  • Mosaic Publicity Services UK
  • Newspaper Sites A - N - Internal Link
  • Newspapers Sites O - Z - Internal Link
  • PR Web
  • - Hi-Tech Stories
  • Press Release Example - E-Hits
  • Press Release Network
  • Radio Sites - Internal Link
  • Television Sites - Internal Link
  • UK editors e-mail addresses (US coming soon) - Internal Link
  • UK Government Press Releases (US coming soon) - Internal Link
  • URLwire

    The button's not working

    If you think you have sent them a newsworthy story and find that it hasn't been used, try giving them a call and asking if they need any more information.

    It is possible that the only reason they haven't included your story, is because they have so many other press releases to choose from. If you follow up, you have a much better chance of bringing your one to the top of the pile.

    You might like to put an information pack together to mail to specifically targeted editors. Along with an introduction letter and your press release, include company literature and your business card. Also provide biographical and historical details about yourself and the company.

    Where can I display my web-site address where people can see it offline?

    Ask your local printer, sign or promotion company for help in placing your internet address on the following:

  • Your product
  • Your product's label
  • Your product wrapper
  • Paperwork with your product
  • Baseball caps
  • Both sides of your envelopes
  • Brochures
  • Business cards
  • Business gifts
  • Car bumpers
  • Car rear windows
  • Classifieds
  • Club noticeboards
  • Delivery vehicles
  • Drink coasters/beer mats
  • Estimates
  • Exhibition Boards
  • Flyers
  • Grab
  • Invoices
  • Letterheads
  • Mail-outs
  • Mobile plant machinery
  • Mouse mats
  • Note pads
  • Pencil cases
  • Pens or pencils
  • Post-it notes
  • Postcards
  • Purchase orders
  • Quotations
  • Receipts
  • Refrigerator magnets
  • Stickers for computers
  • Stickers on your cash registers
  • Store or office signs
  • Store or office windows
  • Store windows
  • Sandwich Bags
  • T-Shirts
  • Umbrellas

    ...and now let them hear it

  • Tannoy announcements in your store
  • Your answer-phone/voice-mail message
  • Word of mouth

    Remember that when you tell someone about your web site, tell them the full .com address. This may seem obvious, but many times people have told me the name of their site without mentioning whether it was a .com,, was hyphenated, etc.

    Offline Directory (UK)

    The Cyber Pages Directory is a 'free of charge' printed classified directory of internet businesses set out in a format similar to a telephone directory and distributed to public access points across the UK

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    An Ed-U-Kate production. This page was produced 29 January 2001 and last edited 9th June 2015.
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