Racer X Press Release Guideline
Racer X Illustrated receives hundreds of press releases every week. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee that we will run any particular item, but a few simple procedures can help ensure that your release gets to the right editors and increase your chances of getting coverage.
What is a press release?
A press release is news story or announcement, written in the third person, which seeks to demonstrate to an editor or reporter the newsworthiness of a particular person, event, service, or product.
Press releases are most effective when they are under 500 words, generally two to three paragraphs.
Report in the Third Person
Just like a news release, a press release purports to report on an event, circumstance, or occurrence by a third party. Always write it from a journalist's perspective. Never use "I" or "we" unless it's in a quotation. The reporter is looking for a story that will be interesting to readers and pleasing to editors. The only info necessary is that which will help craft a good story.
Common news angles include timely information about a new product or service, a business expansion or recent event, an organizational milestone like an anniversary or award, or the issuance of a tip sheet or expert opinion on a topic currently in the news. The news announcement must be clearly stated in the headline.
The lead paragraph includes the who, what, when, where, and how of the story. If the reporter were only to read the lead of a good press release, it would contain everything necessary to get started.
Standard Grammar and Spelling
Press releases should be free of spelling and grammatical errors and should be written entirely in English.
Press releases cannot contain HTML tags and other formatting such as non-standard characters, tables, or forced line breaks. Releases also should not be written partially or entirely in all capital letters.
All press releases sent to Racer X must include a high-res photo that is at least 1200 pixels wide.
What is the best format?
- Keep releases short.
- Write clearly, addressing who, what, where, why, and when in the first paragraph.
- Identify the organization or individual sending the release, and include the name and daytime phone number (with area code) of someone we can contact if we have questions.
- Date the release and include whether the material is for immediate use or for release at a later date.
- Type "end" or "30" at the bottom of the last page.
Common Press Release Mistakes
Providing insufficient and inaccurate information. To be useful, releases must be complete, correct, and specific.