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Five tips for delivering quality copy

March 17, 2011

One of the most common issues I come across in PR is the ability to deliver consistently fresh and engaging copy. When working for clients it’s easy to just hammer out the same message in the same format in press releases and features, especially in b2b and technical PR.

PRs often deal with so many publications, often across a wide variety of sectors, that it can be easier and more economical to rehash an existing feature or press release, only tailoring the minor details.

However, for those aiming to position clients as ‘thought leaders’ and offer editors something new for their publication, it’s important to try and inject something new, relevant and newsworthy to each release or feature.

It’s not often that I write advice style blogs, but below are five key points PRs should bear in mind for almost everything they write for publication.

 

1) Research

Yes, it takes time. But understanding the bigger issues surrounding a specific topic, and including this in copy, demonstrates depth of knowledge to the target audience and adds weight to any key messages.

 

2) Facts and Figures

Provided they’re up to date and from a credible source, facts, figures or statistics can really strengthen a story. Again, this touches on showcasing depth of knowledge.

 

3) Look for the obscure

Bandwagon topics usually offer an abundance of information, which results in very analogous coverage. Digging out a gem of information that no one has uncovered could be what makes your story stand out from the others in the battle for coverage.

 

4) Don’t think like a PR

Always take time to put yourself behind the desk of the editor or in the shoes of the target audience. It sounds obvious but consistently thinking about what’s in it for the target market, rather than just benefits to the client will help with writing far more balanced articles.

 

5) Ask

Part of PR is building up strong relationships, so being able to have a frank discussion with editors about what they need should be straightforward. Asking them outright if there’s something specific they’re looking for shows that PRs are committed to delivering quality copy, not just pushing client products.

 

Good PR is all about innovative ways of delivering information, and although some of the above may be obvious, it doesn’t hurt to be reminded when all the focus is on delivering targets on time.

 

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