– by Shawnee Cohn, Media Relations Specialist;
Joe Curro, Account Executive; and Alan Asarch, Manager, Licensing & Content Development, Business Wire/NY
A common question we get at Business Wire is, “What happens once my press release gets to the actual newsroom?” A key part of our service offerings is the delivery of your market-moving financial and earnings information that fulfills financial disclosure requirements. Our patented NX Network ensures simultaneous delivery of this important press release content to the Associated Press, Dow Jones, Thomson Reuters, AFP, Bloomberg, and other leading financial and news organizations around the world, but what happens on the other end?
On a recent visit to the New York headquarters of Dow Jones, several Business Wire employees met with editors at the Dow Jones Newswires Spot News Desk. These editors are some of the first eyes on the real-time news, including press releases coming in through Business Wire and other wire services. While some news releases may be automatically published over Dow Jones’ various products and services, they have the challenging responsibility of using their swift editorial discretion to determine what news makes their headlines.
The Spot News Desk team at Dow Jones Newswires shared some tips for public relations and communications professionals tasked with writing press releases, to help make sure the releases are seen:
Leave the “fluff” out of your release: At some of the busiest times of the day, such as market open and close, the Spot News Desk editors are hoping to publish several headlines per minute. If it takes longer than a few seconds to determine the market-moving information in the press release, your news is at risk of getting tossed, or at the very least, giving an editor a headache. Instead of forcing the newsroom to sift through your jargon, make the news evident from the very beginning, and try to write in a tone that can be easily understood by multiple audiences. Use bullet points at the beginning to identify salient details, and try to include a subheading that is relevant and would be able to stand on its own.
Timing is of the essence: For a lesser-known company, you’ll have more of a chance at catching an editor’s eye and attention during a slow time of the day. From 10AM-3PM, the influx of wire news tends to quiet down at Dow Jones. If you send out your press release at the market closing time of 4 PM, you risk a greater chance of having your announcement lost in the shuffle.
Use a wire service for your earnings news: Some companies opt out of using a wire service to distribute an earnings announcement and choose instead to post this news directly to their corporate website. For Spot News editors who are monitoring major announcements through a feed of wire news, it can seriously disrupt the flow of information if they are required to open a browser, navigate to a specific page, and/or copy and paste URLs in order to collect the data needed for a story. Needless to say, Spot News desk teams are incredibly busy, and if you can lend a helping hand by making your release easily accessible through a wire service, it is much appreciated.
Beginning its 52nd year, Business Wire continues to be trusted by public relations and communications professionals for the distribution and delivery of their press release announcements to the news and financial community.