A group of IR, PR and business professionals recently attended a panel discussion in Toronto hosted by Business Wire Canada, featuring editors from the Bloomberg Canada team. The editors offered tips on making the most of your press releases.
David Scanlan, bureau chief, Sean Pasternak, a reporter for the banking and financial services sector, and Steve Frank, commodities industry editor, shared their insights based on the reality that they see an average of 300 press releases per day.
• Your press release may be long and full of useful information, but be sure to put the most pertinent content in the first paragraph of your release.
• Know who you’re pitching. Call ahead or send an email to the news organization asking the name of the most appropriate person to receive your press release.
• Be time sensitive. You may have the lead story of the day, but if it reaches the newsroom at 4:59 p.m. on a Friday, don’t expect much.
• Want to follow up with your press release? Email the editor and ask for five minutes on the phone at his or her convenience. If you promise five minutes, deliver five minutes.
• Be clear and concise. Avoid jargon or complicated industry terms.
The prevailing theme of questions posed to the panel by the audience was “How do I get your attention?” Each editor shared his personal preferences.
Sean Pasternak responds favorably when coffee is involved. David Scanlan appreciates scheduling time to chat in advance, and Steve Frank likes conciseness in your press release.
We’ve archived a webcast of the event for those who couldn’t attend.
NOTE: Special thanks to Katrina Bolak and Rishika Luthra for contributing to this post.