You’ve likely heard the old adage: everyone likes to buy, but no one likes to be sold. Though a press release is intended to ‘sell’ your story ideas to the media or to sell your products and services to clients, there is a definite line between a confident release and a sleazy salesman-type pitch.
A press release is not the place for a blatant sales pitch — and writing it as such tends to turn people off. Reporters, bloggers, and consumers don’t like to be told what to think. They want the facts. They want proof of those facts. And then they want to make the judgement.
- Presenting the details of your announcement in the best light possible = good.
- Telling them that whatever you’re announcing is the best thing on the planet with no proof to back it up = bad. This just busts your credibility.
Proving Vs. Telling
The #1 way to turn a press release from a sleazy salesman-type pitch to a news announcement that sells, is to back up the claims made in the press release with attribution.
You want to convey that your brownies are the best. Instead of making the claim that it’s “the best,” reveal the proof:
- 27 out of 30 independent taste testers chose Chocolate Cloud Brownies over the competitor.
- Chocolate Cloud Brownies, called ‘a bite of heaven’ by XYZ Magazine…
- The winner of the 2009 ‘Best Chocolate Snacks in America’ award, Chocolate Cloud Brownies has…
- With more than 1.8 million boxes sold, Chocolate Cloud Brownies outsold its competitors in 2008 and 2009
You’re selling a coaching program and want to convey that you are an expert in your industry. Instead of only saying that you’re “an expert,” back up the claims with attribution:
- Joe Smith has taught more than 150,000 small business owners to….
- Joe Smith, a regular contributing editor to ABC Well Know blog, has…
- More than 50,000 people have attended Joe Smith’s seminars since 1987…
Examples of Great Press Releases
Here are a few examples of press releases that did an excellent job of piquing my interest — without making me feel like I was being “sold.” In every case, I wanted (or did) take action to learn more an in some cases even bought the product!
Kelly Lester, CEO of EasyLunchboxes.com Wins Top Honors in Mom Business Competition
Dr. Lillian Glass, Body Language Expert, Best-Selling Author Provides Actors Body Language Services
New Law Firm Marketing System Proven To Increase Practice Revenue By 30 Percent In 30 Days
What are some ways that you have used to prove, not pitch when writing press releases? Are you facing any challenges working in ways to prove value vs. pitching it? We’re here to help and would love to hear your ideas and help with your challenges!