At Business Cornwall we aim to connect local businesses by acting as a springboard for the latest news and information relevant to companies in the Duchy.
Much of our content is generated through submission of articles from local businesses or marketing / PR companies working on their behalf.
To maintain integrity we exercise a level of editorial discretion to ensure that stories are relevant, accurate and impartial. This means that not all press releases or news items received make it on the website, or indeed the printed magazine.
Following on from a handful of emails sent in by PRs and companies in Cornwall I want to take this opportunity to highlight best practice and encourage those submitting content to review these guidelines prior to submitting any content for the site.
1. Is it appropriate?
Business Cornwall is a business to business website and magazine serving the Cornish business community. Our readership consists of decision makers working within Cornish businesses or with a vested interest in the business scene; business support organisations, networks, councils etc. All content should be clearly relevant to these groups from the outset. Releases written from a general consumer perspective or relating to another area are unlikely to fit our guidelines for publication.
2. Is it clear?
We receive a high number of releases every day. To give your release the best chance of publication it needs to be clear within the first paragraph what you are saying. In busy times we will scan articles looking for good content, if we do not see a ‘hook’ jumping off the page we may ignore your release.
3. Is it succinct?
Press releases need to be clear and to the point. You should try to get your story across in one side of A4 with paras of 2 lines max. The story should contain the 6 Ws (Who, Where, What, When , Why and How). The release should still make sense if cut after the 2nd, 3rd or 4th para.
A Helpful Rhyme…
I keep six honest serving-men
(They taught me all I knew);
Their names are What and Why and When
And How and Where and Who.
4. Is it in the right format?
Press releases are best sent in Word document or Plain Text formats. PDFs are difficult to use as the content maintains linebreaks inserted within the PDF making it difficult to copy and edit the content. Links to external sites are not acceptable for similar reasons.
5. Is it neutral
Try and avoid ‘peacock terms’ – words that seek to promote the subject of the article without imparting verifiable information. Articles overusing these terms will need substantial editing before inclusion on the website or the magazine and as such are less likely to be used during busy times.
6. Can you provide relevant images?
Do you have an image to accompany the story? A good image will help make more of your release. However, avoid sending images that do not clearly relate to the content of the article i.e. photos of staff not quoted, pictures from an unrelated event.
7. Can you be contacted?
Ensure your contact details are included within your email and at the end of each page of your press release. Avoid using your contact details if you are about to go off on holiday or will be otherwise unavailable.
8. Has it been published?
Please do not send in releases that have already been uploaded to your own news sites i.e. company blogs or article submissions sites. If a story has already appeared across Facebook, or is clearly in the public domain, it is no longer ‘news’ and therefore unlikely to be used on the website or within the magazine. There are exceptions for major news items; however, in the main this will be the case.
By following these simple guidelines your press release will have a much greater chance of publication. However, we cannot guarantee publication of any articles submitted to us. Please be understanding when contacting the team to learn why your press release hasn’t been used, its nothing personal.
For companies needing help with their articles we can provide article writing and submission services at competitive rates. Please contact us on 01209 718688 / firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.