1. You’re moving headquarters
Sending a press release makes sense when your organization moves between locations. But moving your headquarters to a new city is even more significant. Writing a press release which targets local and national media is a great way of announcing your organization’s introduction to the city’s business community.
It’s no surprise that a company like McDonalds moving its global headquarters is going to be newsworthy.
The press release serves as a good example for writing a press release on relocation:
- It quickly explains addresses the facts– the who, what, where, when, why
- It provides local relevance to the story by including a quote from Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel
- It explains the significance of the relocation, and provides an emotional hook for local headlines, by emphasising that the headquarters was based in Chicago previously, and defining this as the return to Chicago.
- It provides high quality images for journalists to use in their story
Another good example of a relocation press release is by Peapod:
The release creates interest toward the story by displaying a tweetable quote by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, improving the chances of the story spreading on social media.
2. You partner with a public figure
If there is one thing that gets good media play –it’s celebrities doing good deeds. Think about famous images of Oprah, Bono or your favorite football player doing work for charity. It drives serious clicks.
This Children’s Mercy press release is a great example of how to attract press attention when you have a big name representing you.
The release starts with a video, using visuals to describe the story better than words ever could.
The press release headline is also a good example: using facts like “$2 million” and “setting a record” makes the event seem significant, driving interest for journalists and the public.
The story attracted a lot of media attention in outlets like People, Today, and MSN.
3. You’ve made an important contribution
In August 2017, the Category 4 Hurricane Harvey, left thousands of residents in Texas and Louisiana homeless and without access to essentials, like food, clean drinking water, sanitary and health services.
Whataburger, a Texas based restaurant chain closed all of its Houston locations on Monday, August 28. However, some customers were unable to leave the restaurants due to rapidly rising floodwaters.
The Whataburger news release, though unconventional for a press release, is an excellent example of a brand communicating it’s efforts in giving back to the community.
The release opens by evoking emotion with a powerful image – a Whataburger sign damaged by the storm, with a rainbow in the backdrop. The image perfectly captures the idea of a picture is worth a thousand words, and received significant media attention for its symbolism of Texas pride and resilience, as well as the company’s efforts during the natural disaster.
In addition to the symbolic image:
- The release includes key facts about company’s efforts during the storm, without the standard self-aggrandizing, “look how generous we are” corporate spiel
- The release includes raw footage of Whataburger rescuing stranded customers – allowing the image (or video) to speak for itself
4. You have a new key staff appointment
One of the biggest stories in the tech world in 2017 was the ouster of Uber CEO and Co-founder Travis Kalanick. Responding to a wave of public relations disasters, Uber quickly began a search for a new CEO, who along with managing the ride sharing goliath, would also be responsible for fixing Uber’s ‘culture problem’ and introducing a new, less controversial era for the company.
In August 29, Uber announced their new CEO through this press release. While unconventional – the written press release takes the form of a ‘letter by the board of directors’ (including former CEO Travis Kalanick) to Uber employees. The press release covers off the essentials when announcing a new leader to the press.
The key sentence, once which considering the string of recent controversies, gained much traction in the press was:
“The Board and the Executive Leadership Team are confident that Dara is the best person to lead Uber into the future... while continuously improving our culture and making Uber the best place to work.”
Another example of a key staff announcement is Travelzoo’s 2017 press release ‘Travelzoo Becomes the Only U.S. Listed Company with an 80% Female Board’.
The first paragraph of the press release immediately provides the pertinent information, as well as the angle for interested news outlets – Travelzoo is the only “U.S. listed company to have 80% of its board of director seats held by women—the highest female-to-male ratio of any NASDAQ or NYSE-listed company”.
The press release provides journalists with personalized quotes from leadership about the company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, as well as some quick facts which contextualizes the significance of this landmark among other top US companies.
The release also includes a call to action for journalists – get in touch with Travelzoo and book an interview with the female members of the new board. The release includes contact information of the PR representative of the company, allowing journalists to easily get in contact.
Travelzoo picked up crucial press coverage in June 2017 in USA Today, Fortune Magazine, and continues to cited as recently as May 2018 in Forbes.
5. Your company wins a prestigious award
Winning a prestigious award can be a big moment for your company, and is certainly something worth shouting about.
However, journalists are usually inundated with news about companies winning awards, so getting news coverage can be difficult.
You should still write a press release. Here’s why: even if news outlets don’t pick up your story, search engines like Google will still pick up your story, Hyland’s press release about being included in ‘Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For’ is a good example.
The release opens with a video of Hyland employees explaining why they love working at Hyland, meaning potential employees looking for information on the company can get a better sense of the team culture.
The release includes stats like “43% of new hires come from referrals”, a headline which summarizes the significance of the story (Cleveland-based content services provider makes esteemed list for fifth consecutive year) and some key highlights from What Fortune says about Hyland.
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