One of the questions we get asked a lot in public relations is how to email a press release.
To thrive as a business, you need press coverage. But unfortunately, coverage doesn't just come naturally - you need to work for it.
Writing a great press release about your story is only half the battle. Getting it published is just as difficult, if not more so. Knowing how to pitch (sending an email) journalists correctly is crucial to getting your news spread by the media.
So here’s what you need to know:
Make sure your press release follows the proper press release structure: headline, lead (a brief overview of the story, including answers to the questions: Who? What? When? Why? With what effect?), body, dateline, company info, media contact information.
2) Newsworthy and error-free
Always ask yourself the following questions: Is my news actually newsworthy?
Is my news presented in an exciting way that people will get people interested?
3) Be sure to send the press release to the correct editor
In the media, individual journalists have their own specializations so you’ll need to be super-specific with the people to whom you send your pitches. That means, no general email address of a news outlet.
Remember to submit your press release to the media early enough so you have time to get coverage (for example before your event or product launch), especially if you are interested in newspaper or magazine coverage. For a monthly magazine, for example, it's better to send them the information 2 months in advance.
5) Be brief
Have a brief “covering letter” press release email introduction. Don’t waste the journalist’s time with a long-winded, self-absorbed introduction to yourself or your business in the email.
6) State your intention
In the email subject line state your release intention.
Is it for “immediate release”?
Is it an “exclusive”?
Is it “embargoed”? (which means journalists can’t publish it until a certain date and time).
7) Don’t get attached
If you don't know the journalist, don't send a press release as an attachment.
8) Individuals matter
Address your emails to recipients individually.
Good PR is about relationships more than coverage. This applies everywhere in the world, not just to China. PR professionals and journalists regularly interact with each other because their work is in the same industry. Hence, in order for you to gain the necessary coverage for an organization, you should maintain a strong relationship with them. Always ensure that you build the relationship in a gradual manner to make it strong and long-lasting and don't forget to interact with them in social media. Social media does not only make the sharing of low-key social interactions possible, but it also offers you a means of staying up-to-date with the interests of journalists.
About Ambra Schilliro | Founder of Social Cloud
Ambra Schillirò was born and grew up in Catania, Italy. She worked in her first newspaper and television job when she was 18 years old. However coming from a family of journalists in Italy she has lived, breathed and studied this field from when she was a child. Her articles and TV news appear in a lot of magazines, newspapers and TV stations in Italy and China. She has been the host of different shows, has launched events and press conferences in China. Ambra is a professional member of the Italian Journalist Association from 2002. She is a member of USSI (Italian journalist sport association) from 2006. In 2014 Ambra founded the marketing and public relations company Social Cloud, a PR, marketing, social media and influencer agency. Social Cloud is open in China, Italy, and the U.S.