Tools of the Trade 1: Don’t Fritter Away Your Press Release Real Estate


What can we learn from the announcement that Twitter will begin accepting advertising (besides the fact that this giant of social media finally thinks making money is a good idea)? We can surmise that Tweeting — or microblogging — is going to be around for a long time.  However the 144 characters that all Twitterers are required to enter also can teach us something about writing quick, zinger press release headlines, headlines that you might event Tweet to raise more awareness about your news and to help drive search.

Writing for the ‘Net is increasingly changing the way people write, think and communicate online and “in the real world.” A recent New York Times article (“Texts Without Context: The Internet Mashes Up Everything We Know about Culture”) looked at the new spate of books now out exploring this impact, the good, bad and the regrettable. The takeaway in PR land is that writing press release headlines that are memorable, catchy, or play off some current news item or pop culture trend is now more important than ever given the Google Words Universe we live in.

Of course it’s hard to make a new hire release, a relocation announcement or other prosaic matters sing and dance like those mega-talented actors/kids on the new season of Glee. But news release headlines are sometimes the only thing a news editor, TV assignment desk person or radio producer will look at, given the hundreds that pass in front of them every day.

Make that headline pop. Read the headlines in newspapers and magazines and go for that style. Journalists, producers and others working in media will appreciate your ability to speak their language. Besides everyone appreciates a good play on words, the unexpected bon mot or even a fine Tweet that can be Tweeted again and again.

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