News releases announcing the opening of a new business most generally will be picked up by an editor and published--especially in slow economic times. What is uncertain is how much print space the release will receive.
The release should contain pertinent information at the top such as the name, location, opening dates, markets served and historical data. Next, include details about the product line and job creation. Use statistics and quotes relevant to the opening of the business. Style, format and distribution are also important factors to consider.
Write About All of the Important Facts
Use the inverted pyramid style when writing a news release for a new business. This style is preferred by most editors because it is easy to review and cut the unneeded details from the bottom up.
Write the lead at the top of the release. The lead should include all of the 5 "W's": who, what, when, where and why or how in the top one or two paragraphs. Tell the readers who the company is and who the owners are. Explain who the customers or people are that the business will serve. Detail the location; for example, “ABC Company will be located at the northeast section of town in the Washington Square Plaza at 555 Righthere Street.” Detail the products or services offered. Tell why the company decided to open and why the location was selected. Mention new technology or processes being used. Provide hours of operation and any other types of information that would be important for the community to know about the new business.
Write the release so that the opening of the business is news related and not an advertisement. Include quotes and statistics from local or state economic resources or from business partners or suppliers about the opening.
Include a local, state or national connection or relevant news angle to the opening. Is the new business going to create 200 high-tech jobs in an area that has had a lot of job layoffs or is this a new geographical area for high-technology employers?
Always double check that all the facts, figures and claims are accurate, current and can be substantiated, and that all sources being quoted are reliable.
Properly Format the Release
As with all news releases, a new business announcement should be sent on company letterhead when faxing or mailing. For emailed releases, always send with company email as a PDF file.
Margins should be 1 to 1.5 inches on all sides with the company name, address, contact name, telephone number, fax number and company website URL or email in the upper left-hand corner.
Always include the release date and time directly below the company name and address section. Include the words "For Immediate Release" so that there is no doubt when the news can be released. If the release is being sent to one news source, add the word "Exclusive" and the name of the news source in the release date line. For example, if you are sending a particular news release only to "The New York Times," you would put the following in the release date line: For Immediate Release Exclusive to "The New York Times."
Always title the release. A sample title might be “New Bottling Plant to Open in Cleveland Suburb” or “Small Business Consulting Firm to Open in Canton, Ohio.” The body of the release follows the title.
Format the release using the same formatting options as other types of releases such as using single spacing for all paragraphs with the first line indented. Keep the release on one page and put 30 or ### centered on the last line.
News-release distribution for a new business is important. If you are trying to get feature coverage by a trade magazine, you’ll want to send an exclusive release to that editor only. If you want local and possibly state or national coverage, the distribution list needs to be expanded. Determine the coverage wanted, then distribute accordingly.