The headline of a media release should summarise the subject matter in a way that is interesting and bold. It is designed to engage the reader and encourage them to keep reading. Be creative but keep it short.
The lead paragraph follows the headline and it is essential it
succinctly conveys the story. Check it includes: WHO did it? WHAT did
they do? WHERE did they do it? WHEN did they do it? WHY did they do it?
And, of course, HOW did they do it?
Following paragraphs expand the subject matter of the lead and it is
where you start telling the story with key messages and hard facts.
This is the body of the media release and it is critical to prioritise messages from the most important to the least important.
Write in the third person using active language in short sentences.
Short paragraphs also assist the reader to quickly digest the content.
“Quotes are another important part of writing a media release,”
said Jason Richardson, Communications Officer for Western Riverina Arts. “Remember to attribute them to someone because the media are unable to use newsworthy quotes unless they are sourced and often they will not call to check.”
“When writing a quote you don’t necessarily have to capture what
someone has said word-for-word,” said Jason Richardson. “In fact, it’s
usually better if you take the spirit of what they would’ve said if they
had the opportunity to write their own quote.”
Remember that media releases need to stay focused on their subject. Sometimes a project will provide opportunities to write a number of media releases highlighting various messages, outcomes or milestones.
last paragraph is the least important information and can include
background information or a final summary of the essential details about
the organisation, activity or person that is the subject of the media release.
Always finish the release with the following so the reader knows it has finished and does not continue on more pages: