News+Releases+_+Backgrounders+Feb+22+2011 - Message Design...

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Unformatted text preview: Message Design for Public Message Design for Public Relations & Organizational Communication News Releases and Backgrounders The News Release The News Release •Only a tiny number are ever used by the media •Most are severely edited •Placement is key •Balance needs of the media and your employer/client The News Release The News Release • Publicity (of some news value) • Product (attributes, consumer use, trade or industry­specific) • Financial (shareholder­specific) • Media will focus on what the audience wants to know, not publicity for your organization Writing the News Release Writing the News Release • The lead the opening sentence the hook for the editor • The summary lead (who, what, when, where, why and how?) • Delayed lead (adds drama, better for feature stories) The News Release The News Release • There are several angles to a news release, depending on your audience • Your credibility in providing only legitimate news will enhance your success of media pick up of your news releases Writing the News Release Writing the News Release • Use the inverted pyramid • Use quotations strategically: it’s OK to write quotes for your company reps. once they approve them. Local Interest is a Good Hook Local Interest is a Good Hook • Much easier to get local media to pick up your releases than large, national media (NewsDay vs NY Times) • Local media often short on resources, and may welcome p.r. news releases for story ideas Local Interest is a Good Hook Local Interest is a Good Hook • Journalists from local media often more accessible • News releases that run in local media may eventually reach regional or national prominence News Releases for News Releases for Broadcast Media • It must be news • Keep simple, simple, simple • Pare down concepts to the bare bones • Keep sentences short, use contractions: “I’ll”, “can’t”, “we’ll” • Abbreviations cannot be used, unless they are in the public domain • Begin with the location Backgrounders Backgrounders • In­depth communication pieces • Comprehensive and concise • Doesn’t include company policy or philosophy • Draws from many sources: old articles, news releases, reports, personal interviews • Doesn’t follow the inverted pyramid format of a Backgrounders Backgrounders • Use subheads where possible • State facts, not opinions • Follow conventions for effective writing: use active voice as much as possible, aim for clarity, use short sentences. • 4 – 5 pages long • Include list of references Fact Sheets Fact Sheets • Elaborates on previously presented information • Provides facts, figures • Use subheads • Good to give references ...
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This note was uploaded on 11/11/2011 for the course COMMUNICAT 192:313 taught by Professor Titus during the Spring '11 term at Rutgers.

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