News Release vs. Press Release
In the world of media and public relations, the terms “news release” and “press release” are often used interchangeably. However, there are subtle yet important distinctions between these two communication tools. Understanding these differences can empower businesses, organizations, and PR professionals to convey their messages effectively to their target audiences.
A news release, as the name suggests, primarily serves the purpose of reporting objective information to the media and the public. It is a factual announcement that provides essential details about an event, development, or milestone. News releases are typically concise, direct, and adhere to the principles of journalism. They aim to answer the fundamental questions of who, what, when, where, why, and how.
Press releases use storytelling and branding. They include facts, quotes from executives or experts, product or service descriptions, and statements about the organization’s mission or values. Press releases often emphasize the benefits or unique selling points.
Purpose and tone
- News release: The primary purpose of a news release is to inform, educate, and report. It maintains an objective and straightforward tone, adhering to journalistic standards of neutrality and accuracy.
- Press release: Press releases serve a dual purpose. To inform and to promote. While they convey essential information, they also aim to persuade readers to take specific actions, such as purchasing a product or attending an event. Press releases often adopt a more persuasive and enthusiastic tone.
- News release: News releases focus solely on facts and events. They provide essential details such as who is involved, what occurred, where and when it happened, and why it is significant. Any quotes included are typically from key figures involved in the event or development.
- Press release: Press releases incorporate elements of storytelling and branding. In addition to the facts, they may include quotes from company executives or experts, descriptions of products or services, and statements about the organization’s mission or values. Press releases often highlight the benefits or unique selling points of the subject matter.
- News release: The primary audience for news releases is journalists, editors, and news outlets. These releases are designed to provide reporters with accurate and timely information to craft their news stories.
- Press release: Press releases have a broader audience, including journalists, bloggers, consumers, and potential clients or customers. They aim to generate interest and engagement from the general public, as well as media professionals.
Call to action
- News release: News releases do not typically include a call to action (CTA) because their primary purpose is to inform. The objective is to provide information to journalists so they can develop their own stories.
- Press release: Press releases often include a CTA, urging readers to take specific actions. This may involve visiting a website, making a purchase, attending an event, or contacting the organization for more information.