How Long is a Good Press Release?

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If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know that I’m a big believer in regular press release distribution. Sure, there are the SEO benefits of publishing press releases online, but I’m more enticed by the media coverage a good press release can get you. If you have a solid story and you send out your press release to a targeted list of reporters, you could have a lot of these reporters calling you up for an interview.

Of course, it’s not enough to have a good story, you also have to write the press release in a way that captures the attention of the reader and leaves them asking for more. That’s often where knowing the right press release length becomes important.

Let me explain. The purpose of a press release (if you’re trying to get media coverage) is to get reporters excited and asking for more information. It’s a teaser. A pitch. You want to give them the basic idea of your story, but you don’t want to cram the press release with every single detail relating to the story and your company. In most cases, less is more.

This is the case for a couple of reasons.

  1. If you include every single minute detail in the press release, the reporter has no incentive to call for more information. Reporters enjoy digging deeper and finding the story themselves. They don’t want the entire thing written for them.
  2. Reporters are pressed for time and bombarded with tons of press releases. They don’t have time to read a novel full of trivial details. Your press release should be something they can quickly scan over to determine if they want to learn more or not.

So, what exactly is the ideal length for a press release? The vague answer is that a well-written press release contains just enough information to get the reporter asking for more information. No more. No less. And no fluff.

But to be more specific, a good press release can easily be written in about 200-400 words. In some cases, even less than that. The key is to stay focused on delivering the who, what, when, where, why, and how information immediately, and then follow it up with the most important supporting details. Cut out all fluff and hype.

Take a look back at some of the press releases you’ve written. How long were they? Did they get results?

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