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Press Advisories Can Expand PR Results

It’s time to take the pressure off of the press release.

The press release is the main tool most companies use to communicate with journalists. Thousands of releases are issued every day. But by expanding the use of press advisories, PR teams can expand their outreach and success without adding to the number of press releases issued. 

Traditional press releases are used to communicate a wide range of information, from product launches to company milestones. While valuable for these uses, or investor relations, they may be overkill for more informal communications.

One way to think of the difference between a press release and a press advisory is that press releases are documents where the content is intended to be re-written or otherwise integrated into a news story. The press advisory is not meant to be rewritten but rather to just inform journalists in a more bare-bones way of a coverage-worthy resource or event or person. 

The press advisory differs from an email /story pitch in that it has the who-what-where-when-why-how structure that ensures the document presents all of the information a journalist needs. This format also conveys that the document will be sent broadly whereas a story pitch is meant for the eyes of just one journalist.

Just recently I had a journalist tell me that she most wanted to hear a pitch from a PR person when they had an expert available to comment on a newsworthy breaking news event. That’s a perfect application for a press advisory. Other situations where a press advisory is a great tool:

  • Alerting journalists to upcoming breaking news or major announcements: For truly newsworthy events, a press advisory can act as a timely alert, informing journalists about a significant development and inviting them to attend a press conference for further details.
  • Tradeshow speeches or topic expertise: Events where executives or subject matter experts are presenting on newsworthy or topical content can be attractive to journalists, and a press advisory is a quickly digested way to communicate this information.
  • Community outreach initiatives: If a company is undertaking a noteworthy community outreach program, a press advisory can generate local media coverage to highlight corporate social responsibility.

DJA had a client that was on the leading edge of a major industry transition. For a period of time we had so many speaking events that we sent a subject matter expert press advisory email every month. These would result in interview requests from trade journalists in response to every email and at least once a quarter from business journalists.

Writing a Compelling Press Advisory

An effective press advisory should be clear, concise, and newsworthy. Here’s what you need to include:

  • Attention-grabbing headline: The headline should be newsworthy and pique the journalist’s interest. Briefly capture the essence of the event and why it’s important.
  • Who, what, when, where, why and how: Clearly state the event details – who is hosting, what the event is about, when and where is it happening, and why is it newsworthy for the audience.
  • Expert speakers: Highlight the credentials and expertise of any featured speakers, making the event even more attractive to relevant journalists.
  • Call to action: Clearly state what you want the media to do with the information. Is it an invitation to attend an event, interview a specific spokesperson, or cover the news remotely?
  • Contact information: Provide contact details for a PR representative who can answer questions and coordinate logistics.

Once your press advisory is drafted, there are several options for distribution including email to a company media list and, if its related to important news, distributed on a newswire. Some media advisories might be posted to the company website in which case distribution across social media sites could be a beneficial way to boost awareness with the ability to link back to the press advisory.

By utilizing press advisories strategically, organizations can garner targeted media attention. Focusing on newsworthy events, crafting a clear and concise message, and employing effective distribution methods will help your press advisory reach the right audience and generate impactful coverage. 

In today’s crowded media landscape, a well-crafted press advisory can be a powerful tool for getting your message heard.