Startup Press Releases Don’t Have to Suck


The first press release was in 1906[1] and involved some pretty solid crisis management about a major train crash that killed more than 50 people. Since then, startups have sent approximately 18.3 billion releases, the vast majority of which were received by reporters who didn’t care about what was being announced. 

In fact, if you ask reporters about what they think of press releases, the best they’ll say is “Necessary evil.” Most have worse things to say[2].

But for all of their shortcomings, press releases still have a role to play in a startup’s communications strategy. What’s important is to know why and when to use them, and, more important, how to get the most out of them. Below is our advice.

Make it clear why your news matters

You know in your heart that your startup’s big news is important, but that doesn’t mean the reporter will. It’s critical to establish relevance right out of the gate. Instead of simply stating the news in the first sentence, we often start press releases with a sentence or two to establish context. This basically says: “Here’s the problem, and we’re introducing the solution.”

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