Press release is the cheapest way to gain public attention. They are written on every possible occasion and are often called news releases. Before you write a press release, you should define your goals and whom you want to influence.
There are several types of press releases. Every type has its format, objectives, target audience and implements its functions. Generally, all press releases are free of charge, the exception may be an executive announcement. Below are some types of the most used press releases.
1. Tips and how-to press releases have the best chances of grabbing editors' attention. Their aim is to position the company as an authority and provide how-to information and tips. For example, "How to buy the perfect automobile" or "10 ways to lower long distance bills" are typical headlines of such press releases.
2. New products or service release describes the company's product or service, stresses its benefits and unique selling position. Such press releases should be written in easy-to-understand language without any hypes and jargons (except technical editions). Their aim is to reach the company's target audience, potential clients and partners.
3. Personnel release or executive announcement. When a company hires a new manager or any other important person, it sends out a personnel release in order to announce it. Some publications require payment for this type of releases, other print them at no charge. In its executive announcements the company explains who is being appointed, why this event is very important, what the new employee will do for the company and what his/her occupation was before.
4. Commentary release or a note to the editor. Some news may influence your customers, and might want to show your position and how your company will respond to this event. In this case you write a commentary release or a note to the editor. Editors are more interested in this type of releases, so they respond to them often than to others. They may need some information about you, your organisation, its product or service or they may ask your permission for using some quotations as a part of a larger article. This type of press releases is used with the purpose of positioning of the company as an expert in its field of industry. For example, if the company's business is health care consulting, it might want to comment on new health insurance legislation. Reporters may provide a local angle or a national story on the basis of commentary releases, using its quotations and examples.