Your news release should sell your story

While digital technology has radically changed the way news and information are delivered, traditional news media still represent powerful vehicles you can use to get your nonprofit’s message to a broad audience.

So write news releases that make the most of that opportunity.

A news release should show a news organization why its audience should care about your news.

Get to the point immediately: How will whatever you are announcing improve the lives of people and places?

Keep your news release short and clear. Say what you are doing and the difference it will make in your community.

Use facts, but use them selectively. Explain, for example, how many people you will serve and how their lives will change, and quantify the funds and other resources you are investing.

Do not use jargon. And do not clutter the news release with the formal names you have created for your programs and initiatives, or with the names and titles of your staff and board leaders.

The news release should not be written for your staff and board. Your audience should be the reporters, editors and news producers who will decide whether to run your news.

News media can help you tell your story. Use news releases to help them understand why your story matters.

Before the news media will tell your story, you need to sell it to them.

Want help?

Philanthropy North Carolina is a consulting practice that provides writing and strategic communications support for nonprofits, foundations, colleges and universities, and others working for social good.

To find out more about hiring Philanthropy North Carolina to work with your organization to improve your communications, contact Todd Cohen at 919.272.2051 or

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