More and more racers are using press releases to help communicate with media, sponsors and fans.
Used well these can be very helpful in garnering more coverage for your team. But when they are poorly written, not proof-read or provide no new information, they are not working to their full potential. Here are some quick tips for making the most of your press releases.
No racing doesn’t mean no news.
The typical pattern of media releases sees a massive peak in the week before and the week after major events.
But just because there is no event on do not assume that people are not interested in your team or that publications aren’t running.
This is a chance to get your team some valuable coverage between events, often when there is more space available to run in full.
You can talk about your plans for the next event, some new parts you have that could make a difference or a display your team presented.
Instead of your release getting lost in the wave of content around an event, it will instead receive a lot more focus.
Consider the print media.
While a press release sent the week of an event is fine for websites, for print media it is too late. Magazines could have deadlines anywhere up to four weeks before a major event. It is worth ringing the editors to find out their deadlines and work to these.
Sometimes sending the release just a week earlier will achieve much better results in print media.
Find a good angle and use quotes.
When I am pushed for time in writing reports, press releases can be a great help. But having a release that just states the obvious (John Smith went to the final and was very happy with the result) is not helpful. Detail some of the hows and whys. Explain the highs and lows of the weekend. Tell the writer something they don’t know!
It is also helpful to use direct quotes from racers in press releases, marked appropriately (ie with speech marks). These can be extracted into a report easily and flow much easier than the sometimes very promotional language used in the rest of the release.
Have photos with the release.
A good quality head and shoulders picture of yourself in your race gear and a nice action picture of the car (preferably at the location related to the release) is very helpful.
It could be the difference between your sponsor logos appearing in a publication or not.
Phone calls are great.
When there are anywhere up to 500 racers at an event, the chances of finding out what happened to each and every one of them are slim.
If you think something newsworthy happened to your team, give the publication you want coverage in a call. Even if the event was just plain old average, it doesn’t hurt to call and give an overview. This helps put you at front of mind when it comes to writing reports and if the writer is in a pinch, they know they can give you a call in return for content.
Drag News Australia offers a press release writing service. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org.