Imagine writing a press release which focused on your Christmas products. You were sure it was the best press release you’d ever penned – newsy, covered all the necessary information, included a great photo – but it fell on deaf ears. This great press release had no coverage anywhere: zilch, zero, nowt.

How disappointing, what a waste of your time. But then, you had sent the press release in the middle of January – what did you expect!

This may sound a ridiculous scenario – who, in their right mind, would issue a topical release weeks after the event? But it’s not far off what happens regularly with businesses because they just take too long to get off the starting blocks with their press releases.

Recently we had the Budget, an important event in the political calendar where the Chancellor announces a series of measures which impact on individuals and businesses alike. This is an opportunity for relevant businesses to comment and get their comments published.

But you have to be quick. You have to comment straight away – within minutes, if you can, of the Chancellor sitting down. Sending a press release several days later, or even the day after, is no different to issuing a Christmas-related press release in January. The moral of this is: news means news … it doesn’t mean what happened a few weeks ago.

So be timely with your press releases:

  • Anticipate
  • Be proactive
  • Be immediately reactive
  • Don’t be last with the news

Prince Harry has become engaged, finally. This means a Royal Wedding is coming up in the spring, so start planning now about how you can leverage this event for PR, write your press release and send it a good way ahead, beating your competitors.

When it comes to PR, being the last to the party doesn’t make you Cinderella, it makes you the unreported also ran.

For any help or advice with press release writing, or public relations in general, please get in touch with Jo Smyth, of Word Worker.