Press Release 101: How To Write A Press Release

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A press release, sometimes known as a media release or news release, is an official statement delivered to members of the news media for the purpose of providing information, making an official statement, or announcing something newsworthy. Its primary goal is to attract attention, generate news, and provide journalists with material they can use in their stories.

Press releases are an essential tool in public relations (PR) and are used by businesses, organisations, and public figures to communicate with the public. They are particularly important for managing a brand’s public image and for addressing important information promptly.

The anatomy of a press release

A well-structured press release consists of several key components:

  1. Headline: Summarises everything in a clear, compelling, and concise manner.
  2. Lead Paragraph: Covers the essential 5 W’s – Who, What, Where, When, and Why.
  3. Body: Provides all the extra information needed to fully understand the story.
  4. Media: Enhances the release with relevant images or videos.
  5. Quotes: Adds insight and authority with statements from key stakeholders.
  6. Call to Action: Guides the reader on what to do next.
  7. Boilerplate: Offers a snapshot of the company or brand behind the release.

Creating the perfect headline

Your headline is the first, and sometimes only, impression you make on a journalist, so make it count!

Think clear, compelling, and concise. You want to hook them with something that makes scrolling past a missed opportunity.

Here are some tips:

  • Be Clear and Concise: Capture your core message in 10 words or less.
  • Highlight Uniqueness: Showcase what’s unique, significant, or impactful about your announcement.
  • Use Active Voice: Make your headline dynamic and engaging.
  • Include Keywords: Improve search engine visibility.
  • Avoid Jargon: Keep it simple and accessible.
  • Create Urgency or Curiosity: Make readers want to learn more without resorting to clickbait.
  • Use Strong Verbs: Make your headline more engaging.

What to put in your lead paragraph

The lead paragraph sets the stage for your news, ensuring it includes the 5 W’s to grab attention and establish relevance:

  • Who: Who is the news about?
  • What: What happened or will happen?
  • Where: Where is it happening or relevant to?
  • When: When did or will it take place?
  • Why: Why is it important?

Perfecting the body and boilerplate


After grabbing attention with a compelling headline and lead paragraph, it’s time to dive deeper. That’s where the body of your press release comes in.

  • Expand on the Lead: The body should elaborate on the information presented in the lead paragraph, providing further details, background, and context.
  • Include Quotes: Add credibility and a human touch with quotes from key stakeholders, such as company leaders, project managers, or partners. Quotes should offer insight or highlight the significance of the news.
  • Use Subheadings: If your press release is on the longer side, use subheadings to break up the text and make it easier to read.
  • Stick to the Facts: Keep the language objective and focused on the facts. Avoid fluff and marketing speak. Every sentence should add value to your announcement.
  • Call to Action: If appropriate, include a call to action towards the end of the body, guiding readers on what to do next, whether it’s visiting a website, signing up for an event, or contacting your company for more information.


If the body of your press release is the plot of a book, the boilerplate is like the author bio on the back cover, giving you a snapshot of the people behind the story. The boilerplate is a short paragraph that provides an overview of a company or brand.

It should include your/their mission, foundational details, awards, main products or services, and what sets you/them apart.

Ideally, you want to keep your boilerplate consistent across all press releases but update it as necessary to reflect major company changes.

However, if you do want to highlight something in particular don’t be afraid to! Just ensure that it’s relevant to your press release and target publications.

Adding quotes and media

A great way to enhance your press release is through including multimedia such as pictures, and quotes from relevant parties.


  • Adds Authority and Credibility: Quotes from key figures within a company, such as the CEO, project leaders or relevant experts provides a human element and authority to your press release.
  • Personal Touch: Quotes should offer a personal perspective, reaction or assessment to the story, giving readers insight.
  • Keep It Real: You want to ensure that quotes sound natural and genuine, so avoid overly promotional language or technical jargon.
  • Relevant and Insightful Quotes: Choose quotes that add value and depth to your announcement. One or two powerful statements is far better than several forgettable ones.


  • Adds Visual Appeal: High-quality images, videos, and infographics can significantly increase the attractiveness and engagement of your press release. Visuals must be directly related to the announcement and help tell your story.
  • Enhance Understanding: You can use multimedia to clarify complex information such as survey data, showcase products, or highlight key points. 
  • Quality Over Quantity: When it comes to multimedia, opt for high-quality, impactful visuals over a large number of mediocre ones.
  • Easy Access: When adding photos or images, make sure that high-quality version are easily accessible, and share any relevant credits.

Do’s of press releases

✅ Get Creative!
✅ Do the “So what?” test
✅ Keep it Newsworthy
✅ Get to the Point Quickly
✅ Optimise for SEO
✅ Check Your Facts
✅ Quotes for Credibility

Don’ts of press releases

❌ Forget Your Audience
❌ Overhype
❌ Bury the Lead
❌ Treat it like an Ad
❌ Make It Too Long
❌ Forget to Proofread
❌ Ignore the Formatting

Examples of some great press releases

Helpful links

Looking to write epic press releases but not sure where to begin? Get in touch with our digital PR experts for more information 👋

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