Press release bingo helps PR pros cut down on overused words

A study by SHIFT Communications reported 50 most used words in news releases, and a related game seeks to help slash these words from public relations writing.

If you read press releases as part of your job, then you know they can get very repetitive.

A SHIFT Communications study of nearly 78,000 press releases revealed the 50 most commonly used words, and instead of another article lamenting the use of jargon, the firm released a game called “Bad Press Release Bingo” for PR pros to play alone or in the office.

“Business” topped the list with more than 10,000 press release mentions; “market,” “new,” “research,” “global,” “press,” “information” and “news” each garnered more than 3,000 mentions, and words such as “industry,” “growth,” “forward,” “solutions,” “performance,” “standard,” “sales,” “value” and “data” had more than 1,000 mentions each.

Chris Penn, SHIFT’s vice president of marketing technology, said the words that made the list were unsurprising and pointed to a “herd mentality.”

“If you pick up a copy of Inc. Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, or Fast

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