By: Amy Gonzales
In a world that is growing increasingly more visual, words still remain at the heart of effective communication. Words are what ultimately allow public relations professionals to deliver a message to their publics, their employees or the media. Effective PR writing is the key to successful message delivery. With the right strategy, PR writing can capture someone’s interest and call them to a specific action that benefits an organization. This aspect of PR writing is particularly important for nonprofit organizations such as Capital Area Special Olympics Louisiana. By using carefully-chosen language to convey its message, CASOL can reach community members that may be able to donate funds or volunteer their services.
One of the most basic methods for an organization to effectively communicate with its publics is the press release. The following tips can help organizations capture audience attention and maximize the reach of their press releases.
1. Find an interesting angle.
Often times, the public is not as invested in an organization’s story as the members of the organization are. To counteract a lack of interest, PR professionals need to find an unexpected story to tell. For example, an interesting angle for CASOL could involve highlighting different athletes involved with the nonprofit as a means to spark future donations. The story could focus on how generous donations directly benefit those athletes and allow them to experience joy.
2. Impress with a strong headline.
Once the story has an interesting angle, the way to captivate readers is an effective headline. Forbes contributor Robert Wynne says that strong headlines frame the story an organization is looking to tell. Many organizations like to tweet a headline or link to an article, which means the headline has to be enough to grab a reader’s attention and draw them to a particular organization’s message.
3. Reach the everyday reader with everyday words.
The most effective press releases contain information that readers can actually understand. An organization’s message is easily lost if it is cluttered with jargon. Instead, PR Daily suggests “using ordinary words to achieve extraordinary results.” When readers can comprehend an organization’s message, they are more likely to respond to the organization’s call to action.
4. Conciseness is key.
Eliminating extra words in both headlines and the body text of a press release ensure that the most effective message is shared with an organization’s audiences. PR professionals should focus on tightening their writing while maintaining the overall message of their organization. Conciseness also applies to the press release as a whole. By limiting paragraphs to approximately four lines, PR professionals can maximize white space and improve readability.
Strong, captivating headlines paired with clear and concise messages allow an organization’s story to reach the necessary publics. Whether that public is a news outlet that picks up a story or employees that need an internal message, effective communication begins with an interesting angle to grab readers’ attention.
Connect with Empower Public Relation’s Writing Director, Amy Gonzales.