I received a "SOS/help" text message recently from someone looking for a press release template. A template? In all fairness, this person doesn't work in PR. And to my knowledge, they've never worked with a publicist or a PR professional directly on a project (In other words: They've never hired a PR person). I don't know why this person needed a press release, and I totally understand their blindness when it comes to PR, but it got me to thinking....
Sooooo many people think that the magical, enchanted press release is the key to gaining positive exposure for their product, client and/or service. That somehow, sending a press release is going to land them a spot in a national publication or popular network show. Nope. Nothing could be farther from the truth!
Now, don't get me wrong. A press release does serve a purpose. But, it's simply a tactic; A piece of an overall PR strategy. Tip: In order to be effective, a press release should be relevant and newsworthy. It should tell a story of value, and it should be well written. Why? If your press release is created correctly, your chances of having it published "as is" increases significantly.
Sending out a press release to the media is great, but it shouldn't be the extent of your PR plan. It's equivalent to trying to swim in three feet of water. You'll just be flapping and kicking your heart out...and going nowhere.