Perhaps you’ve just come across a news story like “Cash for Clunkers Lifts Auto Sales” or “Audi Outperforms U.S. Import Luxury Sector,” and you’re wondering how to get the same visibility for your company. Of course, developing and distributing a press release is still one of the most basic ways to reach the public. While you may not have a groundbreaking story that will land you on the front page of The Wall Street Journal, here are 10 “story starters” to consider:

  1. New product release – you recently launched version 2.0 of a product, or have enhanced an existing service.
  2. Business certification – for example, your building has been LEED certified or your quality management system meets ISO 9001:2008 requirements.  
  3. Company merge or acquisition – the company is changing ownership or is expanding its product offering.
  4. Significant personnel change – a new CEO or VP was recently named, or you have appointed a new Board of Directors
  5. Award or industry recognition – your product has been named the best in its class or the company was recognized for outstanding customer service.
  6. Partnership with a major non-profit – think corporate social responsibility and community reinvestment.
  7. Corporate event – holding a customer appreciation day or a community-related event.
  8. An environmentally friendly practice – for example, your company recycles materials from its manufacturing process or has implemented a process to save energy.
  9. Major speaking engagement – speaking at a trade show or other industry related event.
  10. Partnership with an industry-specific organization – any proactive involvement within your industry that strengthens the company brand.

While the list above can apply to most companies, a press release should always be applicable to the audience that is being targeted. For example, you wouldn’t send a release about the newest fuel-efficient car to an aviation-specific trade publication. They would never pick it up, and you’d be wasting your time. (You’d also be running the risk of damaging your reputation with that media contact.)

Your news release can be communicated through both traditional and social media (Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn), but remember that it is also important to post the release to your website or newsroom to increase SEO.

To ensure that you are maximizing media coverage, remember the two Rs: be relevant and be a resource for content-rich news.