Thursday, February 25, 2010

SMR: the news release of the future!

Ok that sounds dumb to say that social media news releases are the news releases of the future since they are already being used today but what I really meant was that if your not using social media news releases or don't even know what they are you are falling behind, fast!
Social media news releases are press releases that are solely meant for online distribution and your target audience is any online journalist that writes related news stories online. There are many, and I mean many, resources online for templates on social media news releases and I suggest doing a Google search to just get a basic idea of what I'm talking about. But generally a SMR should contain all of the following elements:
  • A headline which describes your news story, what your release will be about, BUT make sure your headline does not exceed 14 words
  • Next is your subhead, which is optional but I like to use it, this goes into more details about your news story, just gives more focused information, BUT make sure your subhead does not exceed 10 words.
  • Next comes the date and time of your release, usually sometime around 3 p.m. is good but any time is a good time.
  • Now we get into the central part of your release, the Key Facts which are bulleted key points about your news story, try to keep this limited to around 6 or 7 bullet points, so get right to the facts, don't put useless information in here.
  • Then we get to the quotes section which are also bulleted and appropriated with the name and title of the person you are quoting, make sure you get permission from the person to use the quote! you usually want 2 quotes per news release
  • Then we have the multimedia section which is also bulleted and this is were you put videos and photos but you just write what the photo or video is and link to a page were they can see it, for example if you want them to see a photo of your companies logo you put Photo: company logo and then link that to the logo for your company.
  • The last main component of your release is the related links section which should have links to any site that relates to your release and news story, same as the multimedia section, just put a description and link it to the website.
  • Last but not least, put your name, phone number and email address.
Your done!! Just like that. Now what I would suggest is picking a company and one of their products, so some research on the product and then practice writing a social media release for that product, its not as hard as it seems I promise.

Just always keep in mind that a SMR needs to be short and concise, don't fill your release with a bunch of language just get to the point, SHORT AND SWEET! good luck everyone!

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