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What is a News Release?

Definition of what a news release is and isn't

Clients come to me confused as to what a news release is day after day. It’s the starting point for everything that you do if you are trying to get publicity.

A news release or a press release is a proposal or a pitch: an offer to provide a publication or a show story content.

You send a news release to media. Media are people who either publish something in print, or produce it for TV or some other visual media or radio or some other audio media.

A news release is a request for media coverage in an editorial sense. This is distinctly different than an advertisement, which is where you pay the media to print what you give them and the content you provide clearly sells your product or services.

The news release persuades a publication owner to share your information with an audience who pays for carefully written and designed information. Thus to be persuasive with a publication editor or show producer you must give them material they are willing to utilize.

The content is different since the article is perceived to be written by an objective publisher and once published carries with it the credibility of the publisher. So it has perceived greater value to you and a hightened sense of value to the audience.

That is what we do. We write news releases to convince media to give you editorial coverage.

Media are averse to giving you free advertising. If that is what you want they will insist on you paying for it.

Each media is a business. They survive and thrive themselves by way of subscriptions and advertising revenue. To get that, they have to publish or produce news, entertainment or educational materials that people are willing to pay for.

If we don’t give it to them they have their reporters, freelancers, and employees to produce this type of material or they select the material offered by other publicists and publicity seekers who do offer them this material.

The news release/press release designed to be ready for publication as an article does best because the editor or producer who receives it can say yes to the idea and to implement that decision takes very little effort.

The right content, in the right format, at the right time with costs reduced or even eliminated makes it easy for media to say yes.

That is what we try to give them.

This is what you hire a publicist to create if you can’t do it yourself.

Posted on Monday, April 27th, 2009 at 7:40 pm In
copywriting, media coverage, news releases, press releases, publicity planning