A press release, news release, media release, press statement or video release is an official statement delivered to members of the news media for the purpose of providing information, an official statement, or making an announcement and can help you bring awareness to your business and services.

A press release is a short, compelling news story written by a public relations professional and sent to targeted members of the media. The goal of a press release is to pique the interest of a journalist or publication. The press release should contain all the essential information (who? what? where? when? how? and most importantly why?) for the journalist to easily produce his own story.

The Small Business Encyclopedia defines press releases — also known as news releases — as “brief, printed statements that outline the major facts of a news story in journalistic style”. A press release should read like a news story, written in third-person, citing quotes and sources and containing standard press release information.

Press releases used to be a critical part of every marketing strategy. The “release” is what helped make your audience aware of your new product or service, or how you would “pitch” it. You would send one out because you had news to share. It would include things like:

  • vital information
  • quotes
  • people to contact

It can be a fast, easy way to hook your audience and get them talking about your product or company. But as inbound marketing grew, so did the current inbound marketing strategies we use today, and press releases seemed to fall out of favor. These days writing a press release can be an afterthought when you’re putting together a digital marketing strategy. But it shouldn’t be. Here are some reasons why they should still be considered an important part of your plan.