Robin Wauters writing for TechCrunch has published a list of 10 words he would like to see banned from press releases. As I read the list I have to admit, I am guilty as charged. We use many of these phrases over and over, because it is easy. Each individual client feels good about the release,and unless you are reading hundreds the way Robin does, you don’t notice how repetitive they are.
So here is the challenge, how do you write a simple release without using these words:
1 ) LEADING / LEADER
2 ) BEST / MOST / FASTEST / LARGEST / BIGGEST / etc.
3 ) INNOVATIVE / INNOVATION
4 ) REVOLUTIONARY
5 ) AWARD-WINNING
6 ) DISRUPTIVE / DISRUPTION
7 ) CUTTING / BLEEDING EDGE
8 ) NEXT-GENERATION
9 ) STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP
10 ) SYNERGY
It takes time, and a focus on the real story. What really is news? What will your clients care about? The challenge is to say something specific and relevant about a company without hype. So write the facts, just the facts. For example:
Bad: Award winning, Roundpeg is Indy’s leading small business marketing firm announced today…
Good = Indianapolis based Roundpeg, offering marketing services for local small business owners announced today..
The second version contains much of the same information, and will feed on-learn search, but reads more directly for the tired journalist, just looking for the facts! For more on this topic check out the The Gobbledygook Manifesto (PDF) by David Meerman Scott.