Press Releases and Collateral: Don’t Blur the Lines

There has always been a blurring of the lines between marketing and PR. And today, more than ever, PR practitioners are taking on projects that could be viewed as traditional marketing responsibilities. From writing drip campaigns to creating social media content and producing videos and podcasts, we’re regularly asked to bridge the gaps between marketing, advertising and communications.

Which is fine. PR professionals function very well in this sort of gray area, and many of the marketing-centric assignments we gladly take on are rewarding and effective. However, there is one really gray area that generates a lot of friction with PR pros – the increasingly blurred lines between press releases and collateral.

A press release is part of our core media relations repertoire. They’re written – first and foremost – to satisfy the needs of the news media. A good press release contains the “Five Ws,” designed to relay the exact information that needs to be articulated in the first paragraph of any printed news story. The Five Ws include who, what, when, where, and why, with the occasional “how” thrown in!

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