The Power of the Quote

What’s the purpose of a news release?

Dictionary.com says it is “a statement prepared and distributed to the press by a public relations firm, governmental agency, etc.

I like what Entreprenuer.com has to say about it better. It calls a news release “A public relations announcement issued to the news media and other targeted publications for the purpose of letting the public know of company developments.

But what do you do when you have developments that cry out for a news release but the boss refuses to acknowledge the importance of the quote?

To me, a news release should be written in the same inverted pyramid style as a story that would appear in a newspaper. You lead with the most important information up top and the lesser important information or background towards the bottom. Included in all this is a quote from a leader of the organization expressing the importance of this news and why it matters.

The quote gives the news release its life. It can create a sense of urgency, convince people of the news’ importance or instill a level of passion to company developments.

The quote can help sell the news to the media and the public a straight telling of the facts simply cannot do.

That human component to the news release is so important that it’s often the element I pine over the longest to make sure it is conveying the best message I want to deliver.

It’s our job as public relations professionals to convey to management the need of a complete news release with quotes so we can effectively inform the public.

Have you ever had to deal with a manager or client who did not want to be quoted? How did you resolve it?


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