How to make your boilerplate sizzle

That identifying paragraph helps imprint your brand.

You know what a boilerplate is, right? It’s that one-paragraph, “About Us” chunk of copy you slap at the end of every press release you kick out the door.

If you’re like most organizations, this paragraph often gets reused across all sorts of sales and marketing communications, which makes it the most important paragraphin your company.

The term “boilerplate” actually dates to the late 1800s (or early 1900s, depending on whom you ask), when manufacturers of steam boilers would attach a metal plate so people would know who made the boiler.

In the early days of the printing press, organizations would produce standardized text on metal plates that could be reused whenever a story mentioned a particular company. This saved time in the printing process.

Today, this has led to the consistent use of an “About Us” paragraph on press releases. In the digital age, it’s important that you spend the necessary time to write a great boilerplate. It will most likely appear in thousands of places across the Web through your regular PR and marketing activities.

Two key elements

A great boilerplate is one part “just the facts” and one part positioning statement (the “so what?” of what you do).

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