Three quick tips for writing a totally pointless press release

The author dissects a mind-numbingly viscous, banal paragraph that someone, for some reason, thought would inspire journalists to action. You’d better sit down for this one.


Today, three quick tips for ensuring your next press release bombs, inspired by this pointless piece of prose:

“The new brand is a result of our collaborative work with stakeholders, members and customers. We listened to their feedback about a desire to work with a more modern and global organization, while still maintaining our rich history and an emphasis on sustainability,” said Ash Sahi, President & CEO, CSA Group. “The singular, more streamlined brand identity will help as the organization extends its global service offerings and solutions to our customers and members while building on our specialized technical expertise, reputation, trustworthiness and rich heritage.”

Here are those tips:

1. Announce something of absolutely no interest to any living journalist.

A good topic for your totally pointless press release? Your redesigned logo, a subject containing such minimal news mileage that it definitely warrants 370 words’ worth of your corporate affairs manager’s time.

Caveat: if your new logo is likely to be greeted by universal opprobrium, tell your corporate affairs manager to expect to be fielding calls all day.

After all, there’s no such thing as bad publicity, is there? Hmm. Tell that to the hapless designer who’s not worked since committing the heinous crime of adding a little blue square to the word “Gap” for a brief moment in 2010.

2. Pepper your totally pointless press release with biz babble.

Start by including anything that’s appeared on our various lists of words that should be banned, such as:

Stakeholders (No. 41)
Sustainability (No. 4)
Solutions (so awful it warranted a post of its own)
Offerings (No. 3)

We’re particularly pleased to note that since we wrote about it, offering is going the way of learning and is increasingly being pluralized.

Which only adds to our feeling that this is a word most often paired with the adjectives meager and burnt.

3. Write a quote for your CEO that sounds so obviously made up people will wonder whether he’s actually a robot.

Remember: The best way to compensate for your total lack of ear for the rhythms of normal, human speech is to write a quote so ridiculously long it would eat up about six column inches of space in your chosen publication. That’ll persuade them to run it.

Read the rest of the totally pointless press release from which the above quote was culled.

A version of this post first ran on DorisandBertie.com.

Topics: PR

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