How To Write A Good Press Release By Yourself

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Struggling to finish the press release for your latest announcement? Here are a few practical tips to make the reporters want to read further. I’ve written this as a checklist and included some detailed examples. I hope this helps you and your startup.

A good press release is one that can rapidly convey the scope of the news it’s announcing, and convince it’s audience to read further. In an era of over-information, it’s even more important to get this right. A press release generally serves a combination of business goals such as building brand reputation and visibility, attracting investors, or driving product interest and usage.

In writing a press release you need to think of three main factors:

  • The content — What is is that I’m announcing?
  • The audience — To whom?
  • The structure — How am I conveying this?

#1 The Content

The content is literally the backbone of your announcement. A press release is as interesting as the news it delivers. Only news, real news, deserves a press release. That includes for example, a product launch, a fundraise announcement, or the availability of your product or service in new countries. Ask yourself if what you are announcing is something you personally would want to read about if you picked up a newspaper.

Incremental updates such as a minor product improvement, a website redesign, or even hiring a new senior executive, although they might be very important milestones to your business, are not necessarily newsworthy. These updates may, however deserve a post in your company blog, or a carefully played out social media strategy – but that’s a separate topic 🙂

#2 The Audience

When you write a press release, you actually have not one but two audiences: the journalists that you would like to see covering your announcement and the readers that buy or browse those publications.

Your first audience – the media: Your press release needs to contain information relevant to the media you are sending it to. Oftentimes, you will be reaching out to more than one type of media. A tech reporter is typically interested in your product, what makes it new and different, as well as what disruptive potential it’s bringing to the ecosystem. A business reporter, will want numbers such as the market size, your company’s revenue or user growth. A consumer outlet will be interested in your users’ experience and feedback.

Your second audience – the end reader: in order to determine what media to target with your announcement ask yourself if you, as an end reader would find your news appropriate in a given publication. For example, an early stage funding announcement is something that you might expect to see in TechCrunch, Startus Magazine or, but maybe not in the Wall Street Journal, WIRED Magazine, or GQ.

#3 The Structure

The impact of a press release depends a lot on its clarity and structure. There is no golden rule, but I’ve suggested below a structure that works well with reporters, and added some examples of wording where possible.

The Title: The title of a press release announces the news in a catchy and condensed way. Used as an email subject, a good press release title should make a reporter want to open the email.

Example: FoodTech startup A raises €YY in seed funding from VC 1, VC2 and angel investors as FoodTech industry triples in size this year

The subheader(s): The purpose of subheaders is to share the main proof-points of the story. I usually recommend no more than 3 condensed bullet point.


Since its silent launch 6 months ago Startup A has grown its user-based 30% month on month

Company to use funds to develop the product, recruit 20 engineers and launch new markets in the next 12 months.

Startup A aims to change the way people [vision/mission], a market estimated to have grown by XX% in the last year alone.

Opening paragraph: The first paragraph shares the entire news that’s being announced upfront. By the time you’ve finished reading the opening paragraph, you should understand the entire scope of the news. This is key, as reporters will decide within seconds if the news is something they’d like to cover of not.

Example: Startup A, the first company to [… USP] announces today that it has raised €XX.00 million from VC 1, VC 2 and angel investors A, B and C as is launches out of Beta. The company will use the funds to further develop its product, expand geographically, and grow its team by 30% to 10 employees.

Next paragraphs: The remaining paragraphs are there to explain, and share further details about the opening paragraph. The body of the release provides examples, numbers, statistics and quotes from the main parties involved.

Here is a suggestion for a typical press release structure:

Paragraph 2: product description + company growth numbers or market statistics

Paragraph 3: quote from the founder highlighting what the announcement means to the company + the company vision and mission.

Paragraph 4: Quote from other stakeholders if there are any.

Paragraph 4 or 5 : End on an opening such as the company’s last announcement, an industry statistic to show the size of the opportunity, etc.

This is by no means the only way to write a release, but it’s a template that I hope can be helpful. Media relations are 50 % common sense, and 50% experience and expertise. Ask yourself if you’d like to read your own company’s press release. Chance are, if you would, so will the reporters you are looking to contact. Good luck!



Editor’s Note: If you’d like to know more, our contributor Clara is available for a more detailed chat.



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