Writing a good press release and boosting your profile

    Pros need to think ‘national’ for long-term profile, and ‘local’ for customers, writes Andy Hiseman from Magic Hour Media.

    I did a presentation about this for the PGA in Harrogate recently. There’s national exposure, which feels great, then there’s local exposure, which probably drives more people to your door.
    You want national publicity? These days there’s only around a dozen UK golf magazines and websites which can get you that, so it is not an impossible task to contact them all. But how many golf pros take the trouble to systematically contact those twelve editors, and offer to help? The answer is – very few. However, the golf enthusiast media are constantly looking for new instruction ideas, and new venues to film their equipment tests. Give them a try!

    I did this for The Shire London this year, and simply by making a few phone calls we made 2017 editorial arrangements with Today’s Golfer, Golf World, Golfshake, Golfmagic, Square Mile and talkSPORT as a result. The Shire is enjoying good publicity this golf season.

    The local media is more story-driven. Very few golf pros in my experience have the ability to spot when something newsworthy is happening at their golf club. It can be a simple thing, like dressing up to raise money for a charity. If you have a great photo and a solid news story, the local newspaper will cover it – and possibly local radio and TV too. A couple of lads at Milford GC in Surrey did that one year, I took an eye-catching photo, and they got great local (and national) coverage for it. Sometimes you have to make it happen yourself. We organised a golfing talent hunt for a driving range in Manchester, for example, which resulted in over 500 children and their families turning up over the weekend. The Manchester Evening News gave it great exposure, the TV news cameras also arrived, and the coaches there sold a lot of golf lessons afterwards.

    Contact Andy on 07795 360112 or by emailing andy@hiseman.com

    Five top tips on writing an effective press release, provided by the team at the Azalea group.

    Find the story. Is there something different or unusual which makes the story interesting and more likely to be published? Sometimes, it can be a seemingly minor quirky detail which helps grab the attention and can be developed into something more engaging.
    Good headline and intro. A sharp, clever or amusing headline gets the reader interested from the start and the first paragraph needs to grab the attention. If it’s a dull start, there’s less motivation to read the rest of the story and is less likely to gain coverage.
    Target the right audience. Consider the kind of publication where you would like your press release to appear and ensure it is suitable for possible inclusion. Recognise when a story may have broad appeal or when it is suited to a more specific audience.
    Make it accurate. Double-check names, ages, spelling, locations, dates, website addresses, contact numbers. Don’t miss out any important information and don’t include anything unnecessary. Who, what, where, when, why.
    Strong imagery. Previous successful campaigns with Q Hotels and Stoke Park have benefited from great photos to go with good stories. Be creative with photos to maximise impact and video content can enhance online coverage.

    Contact details of the Azalea group are on their website: www.theazaleagroup.com

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    A graduate of Cardiff University’s highly respected post-graduate magazine journalism course, Andy has successfully edited four different publications across the B2B, trade and consumer sectors. He is skilled at all aspects of the magazine process in addition to editing websites and managing social media channels.