7 "To-Don'ts" When Learning How to Write a Press Release for an Event

August 7, 2013 / by Kathryn Redman

WeddingRingsandOnlinePressReleasesNatasha, one of our amazing bubblers, got engaged this week to Johnny, her sweetheart sheriff. A lawman with great taste in rings! Well done Johnny! Along with that, she turned 25, which she insisted feels old. As someone who is old enough to be her mother I take offense to that statement, but decided we would celebrate with her anyway. Engagements, birthdays, anniversaries, parties…events are worth promoting and getting excited about.

A press release for a personal event is perhaps a bit over the top, (we have Facebook for these announcements), but if you have something coming up in your business, it is important to know how to write a press release for an event. Understanding general press release rules is of course, important too, but event press releases have a few additional rules you need to know. For some tips on more general rules of
press releases, check out:

Online PR-A Way to get more clients

In an earlier blog post on how to write a press release for an event, another Bubbler went over some basic tips that included the following:

  1. Keyword your press release so it can be found
  2. Make it interesting
  3. Incorporate images and links
  4. Choose the right Press Release distribution company

That’s a great “to do list” for writing your press release, but what about what I call the “to don’t list?"

Here are  7 common errors people make in preparing a press release for an event. 

1. Your Press Release is not your flyer

Write it like a press release. It should be factual and not “adsy” or full of hype. Having said that, it is totally fine to add a link to your event flyer or marketing piece at the bottom of your press release. An example would be “For more information, see our flyer at http://yourlink” or you could link to a PDF also.

2. Always write it in the 3rd person

Never use I, me, we unless it is within the context of a quote. Press releases should be he, she or it as you frame the content. Just pretend that you are the journalist or newspaper reporter and that you are writing the press release for somebody else. That will help you keep this rule intact.

    3. Use Proper Names

    Proper names are better than he or she in a news type of item. Make sure you use the full name once and then further references to that person can be last name only.

    4. A press release involves two parties

    Even though it is your event, it can’t just all be hype about you or your company. The main goal is to give a good enough story about what you are up to that media outlets will want to pick it and repost for you. Ideally a journalist might want to do a story if the topic grabs their interest, so write it for them. 

    5. Never use ALL CAPS

    Except for stock symbols, acronyms or abbreviations, you want to avoid using ALL CAPS in any press release, as this looks more salesy and less newsy.

    While we're at it, also please don’t ever use highlighters in a press release.  If your release isn’t interesting enough without all caps and highlighted words, it might not be worth the time to publish it. This is one time when the writing has to fight for itself with no graphic assistance on your part. 

    6. Avoid using creative fonts

    Keep the font choices simple for online and for text reading (Arial, Times, Helvetica, Verdana) and don’t use colored fonts. Same principle as number 5 on this. Let the text speak for
    itself. Again, the only exception here would be links which would be underlined
    in the normal blue we have come to expect.

      7. Control your punctuation temptation

      We know you are enthusiastic, but don’t ! and please, never, never !!!! in a press release.

      There's my top 7, but wait, I just thought of one more that should go without saying but these days might need to be said: 

      *BONUS, NO CHARGE MATERIAL*

      8. Never, ever, ever LOL, OMG, or IDK in any kind of professional writing.

      Just don't. We are pleading with you. Enough said! 

      So, now you have some “to do’s” and “to don’ts” in your toolbag when you are considering how to write a press release for an event. Need some help on crafting your message? Give us a call.

      Topics: Online Public Relations, Lead Generation

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