Create an Amazing Press Release and Get Noticed

by NS Newsflash

What’s worse than a bland press release? A press release that doesn’t get picked up from any of your intended media outlets. I hate to sound so harsh but when you produce crap basically you will get crap in return. You must have something that catches the eye of your local media to turn it into a newsworthy story.  Your event and/or establishment may depend on it!  So I have put together some ways to produce an amazing press release that is sure to get picked up by your media sources.First you must know the medium you want use to send out your press release i.e. fax, email or print. Then gather who your contact’s will be and get their information and make a list of your intended recipients. Make sure to think about sending it to online media and include links to provide more ways for your audience to find information on your produce/event. Watch this great video posted by  to gain more customers using press releases online:

Multimedia Press Release – Tip #26 – Internet Marketing for Small Business

Let’s keep these next steps simple and to the point much like how your press release needs to be.  Pick a catchy yet informative title that will grab and hold the attention of your audience. Make sure to keep the first paragraph brief, clear and to the point but include all the vital information: the where, when, why, what and who. Press releases should never be more than one page.

The last paragraph will be dedicated to your contact details. Always include a primary contact name, phone number, address, email and website address.  You can also end your submission with a mission statement or quote to make a lasting impression.

Remember who your audience is and speak to them using knowledge and passion of your product/event. Include details or facts to spark curiosity in following paragraphs. A good press release not only informs but teases as well.

Editing is one of the most important things you can do before submitting your press release. Your submission should be 100% error free and grammatically correct.  Double check your work and have someone else look it over. Use spell check often and try not to be repetitive in your vocabulary. Dust off your thesaurus and remember to utilize words that everyone can understand. Keep your audience in mind and speak to them using their language but don’t exclude potentially interested customers by using acronyms or too many terms which may confuse those who are not familiar with your product/organization.

I didn’t want to spend too much time on going through formatting but it is a vital piece of the process in producing an amazing press release.  I have added this example from PubicityInsider.com for you to review.  Remember to end your submission by entering the # symbol three times centered at the bottom of the page to indicate the end of your release. I found some helpful tips at eHow.com that you may want to check out to gain furture insight on creating your submission.

That’s it my friends. You can totally pull this off and promote your product/event with ease and insure success having the media on your side.  Make sure to personally send a thank you note to the media contacts who pick up your story and publish it. This will build a positive relationship and could pose helpful with future promotions. A email thank you is suffice.

Your amazing press release is ready to submit. 

Key Elements to a Successful Public Relations Campaign

Hand Shake photo courtesy of Microsoft Photo File

Two weeks ago our county successfully wrapped up another year for our Relay For Life campaign by hosting the 2012 Relay For Life Sponsorship Luncheon to thank our wonderful sponsors that donated time and money for cancer research and awareness. I was honored to be the 2012 Chairperson for the event and quite frankly am exhausted but very proud of our accomplishments.  Our Relay For Life event was held in July one of the hottest months on record yet we managed to raise over $44,000 for our local American Cancer Society chapter. How did we do it? I have put together some researched factors along with my own strategies that hopefully you will find important when running a marketing campaign for your event.  No matter how big or small you must follow these elements to build a strong PR campaign for your event.

First key factor is knowing your audience. Of course our audience is current cancer patients, cancer survivors and caregivers of cancer patients. In the county I live in this can include almost everyone I know in one way or another. We have five cancer treatment centers, 2 major hospitals and various ocologists in the county working dilegently to treat cancer patience in the area.

Make it personal. Be sure when targeting your audience you are conveying your message by sharing a personal story or connection to bring your audience something personal that they can connect with. I wrote about my best friend passing away of lung cancer last year. This showed my compassion and personal  connection of why I want to stomp out cancer and raise awareness.

Choose your media. There are many tools that can assist you in this area. Utilize the local news stations, newspaper, radio, and all social media outlets such as Twitter, Facebook, Google + and more.

Be trustworthy and honest. Your audience will respect you if you are upfront and honest with what message you are trying to get out there. Stay consistent with your values.  Research is key and stay on task with what you are presenting. A helpful insight to these points can be found at 10 Key Elements of Effective Public Relations Campaigns and Bonus Download by Caroline Jaffe-Pickett.  Caroline was most helpful to me when I was running our 2012 Relay For Life campaign.

Stay positive and do your research.  You can do it!

Why Research Before Blogging on a Hot Topic?

via www.thesologuide.com

Research picture provided by The Solo Guide

Great question don’t you think?  When I first learned that we will be creating a blog in my Introduction to Public Relations class I was stoked to say the least. This was going to be my outlet for my thoughts, feelings and my own creative take on the world! But I soon found out that to properly post information that others are going to read, it really must be honest, true and properly researched first, not just my own perspectives on things.  Well this just took the air out of my tires if you know what I mean but I understand why.

One day I hope to be working in the profession of public relations so I must learn the importance of research now.  Some PR practitioners credit communication and strategy as the most valuable skills in their field. You cannot put those skills to good use without a foundation of research and information gathering. I will need a strong foundation to start from, a building block if you will so I must properly research my client, target audience or whomever I am trying to reach before posting my blog. Not only will I need to research my audience but the content of my blog must contact facts and site appropriate linked information.

According to an article I read posted from PRFriend on the importance of research stated there are various types of research involved in PR, such as market research, industry research, news tracking, and competitive analysis. Each project requires different research methods, but one thing is constant: all PR projects involve research to some extent. Some ways that research can help improve PR practice is to know your client, find your market, choose your media and make your pitch.  Sounds easy but there is so much that goes into it that is very time consuming.  Stay patient as research is extremely important to the livelihood of the message or product you are trying to promote.

I volunteer for a nonprofit called Downtown Terre Haute, Inc. (DTH) which was established to preserve, create and promote a downtown neighborhood that is a vibrant hub for business, entertainment, government, arts and educational activity, attracting both local residents and area visitors to the downtown Terre Haute area. A recent website called Choosedowntown.com was launched in 2011 from what had started as a group of students from a marketing class at Indiana State University conducting a research study for DTH to find out how many people lived within a 100 mile radius to Terre Haute to assist the nonprofit with better promoting businesses within the Downtown Terre Haute area. Their results provided insight on their audience that could be potential customers to the local markets. This information gathered to further help establish future businesses to the area as well.

All research no matter how big or small is extremely vital to public relations. Good luck with your research!

A Sit Down Conversation with Lorrie Heber, Public Relations/Communications Leader in Terre Haute, IN

Lorrie Heber via Linked In

Recently, I had the privilege to sit down with one of the most respected professionals within the Public Relations field in the Terre Haute, IN area. Her name is Lorrie Heber, President of Trailblazer Communications. Lorrie is an accomplished, creative and results-driven communications and marketing professional with more than 25 years of progressive experience primarily in hospitals and healthcare. She is recognized as a multi-faceted leader consistently elevating the organization and its community in a competitive and rapidly changing environment. Lorrie is especially strong in the realms of internal and external stakeholder relations, key message development and delivery, and brand management.

She knew at an early age she would be in public relations. In the 60’s she moved with her family to Terre Haute, IN where her father was sales manager of a local a radio station. Lorrie assisted with his business by editing commercials, working on sales strategies and assisting with daily programming needs. She attended Indiana State University (ISU) in the Radio-Television-Film program ISU offered at the time but soon discovered she was not meant to become an on air personality so she altered her major to Speech Communications with a minor in Marketing. She later pursued a Master’s Degree in Leadership Development at St. Mary-of-the-Woods College in 2008.

Lorrie held a few positions at Union Hospital over 20 years she was employed with them which all positions were in the Marketing/Communications/Public Relations field.  While at the hospital one of her cherished accomplishments was successfully navigating a community debate including City Council regarding the closure of a city street for the construction and opening of three major building projects including a $178 million hospital expansion completed in 2010. Union Hospital East Now Open Commerical is one of many great promotional videos that Lorrie created and posted to the my union hospital Channel on YouTube that will give you a sense of the magnitude of projects Lorrie worked on while Director of Communications/Marketing at Union Hospital.

After many years of building her career in a fast past environment, Lorrie decided to start working for herself. Currently President/Owner of Trailblazer Communications she stated her daily routine changed drastically and not all for the worst. After I had a clear understanding on where Lorrie got her start and built her career, I wanted to learn more about her take on the Public Relations profession.

Lorrie explained that in the PR profession there is not a typical work week. Making phone calls, networking, researching the internet, writing, and organizing herself are just a few things Lorrie spends a big part of her day. She keeps current in the PR industry by gaining memberships in her field such as being a member of the Public Relations Society of America (PSRA), attends many conferences and reads articles on the internet. Lorrie mentioned the true PR profession is very limited in this area of the Midwest especially in Terre Haute. She wishes that could change in the near future.

“Writing is the most important skill you can have in my line of work”, Lorrie stated. She went on to add that she journals every day and practices writing to strengthen that skill. She then gave a few tips for me as she knows I am green in this field and need some helpful hints. The three main guidelines Lorrie gave me are to volunteer within my community, stay updated within my field and make sure you know how to explain the history/proof of the skill set(s) you say you bring to the table. Lorrie also added not to overextended myself. She said that I need to understand by saying yes to one thing, I am saying no to something else. This has really opened my eyes and made me really think about this profession in a new light. She stressed that balance is a key factor in the success to this field.

Lorrie sits on several Board of Directors of nonprofit organizations within the Terre Haute community. She most recently was the 2012 Susan G. Komen Wabash Valley Race for the Cure Chairperson as she is also a breast cancer survivor since 2006. After spending over 2 hours with Lorrie, I have realized Communications/Public Relations within a nonprofit organization is exactly what I want to with my career. I can use my passion for cancer awareness combined with my skills in PR to build a platform to spread the word to the world and hopefully one day have a world without cancer. To find out more about Lorrie Heber visit her Linked In page at Lorrie Heber LinkedIn. This by far was one of the most powerful discussions over coffee I have ever had.