The 5 Words PR Folks Should Use
I recently came upon a great post in TechCrunch about the 10 words writer Robin Wauters would like to see banned from press releases. He’s right–there are a lot of mindless, vapid press releases out there that are really nothing more than marketing puffery rather than conveyors of useful and important information that in the old days we called “news.” And while it’s easy to dump on PR folks, instead of saying what shouldn’t be, may be we should look at how it ought to be. So in that spirit, I offer five words would make any communication, not just press releases, stronger. I already used one of them in this paragraph.
This is a wonderful word. Short, sweet and very powerful. And if what you are offering truly is new then you are leading the way in your industry or field. Always look at what you are doing through the prism of what is fresh and highlight that. But don’t make this claim lightly.
Like new, this is a great word–it shows how your organization or company is doing something unusual, out-of-the-norm that sets you apart from everyone else. That can be extremely interesting.
Verbs like improve speak to how your product, service, cause changes in someone’s life for the better. What a terrific message to send.
Something of value is important, worthwhile because it brings with it some kind of tangible or intangible benefit.
If something is useful, it is of service to someone or something. Like the other words, useful promises a benefit to someone else. It reminds us that the information we are communicating is not just about us but about our audiences.
Each of these words is simple and perhaps even ordinary. Their strength comes in the promise they make. Use them wisely and always make sure that your product, your ideas, your services live up to their promise. Far too many of us forget that communication is a two-way street. It starts with your audience, what they need and want and what matters to them. Otherwise, we’re all just engaging in useless chatter.
It won’t be enough, however,to say or write these words. It is vital to demonstrate how and why what you are doing is new, different, improves.