Press releases, sometimes called news releases, media releases, press statements or even video releases are written or recorded communications aimed at the news media for the purpose of announcing a newsworthy event and/or to bring the issuer of the release to the attention of the public at large. They may be mailed, emailed or faxed to the appropriate editors at newspapers, magazines, radio and television stations, and/or television networks. The release may be sent out by the originator or by a dedicated press release distribution service.
The issuance of press releases is a common practice amongst the professionals in the public relations field. The aim usually is to attract positive media attention to the professional’s subject client and/or to generate publicity for the client’s products, services or events. A press release provides reporters with free copy and can give a reporter the basics needed to develop a news story.
Press releases can be used to announce a range of newsworthy happenings, such as upcoming events, staff promotions or recruitments, awards, new products or services, business accomplishments, etc. They can be used to generate a feature story or they may be issued for the purpose of announcing news conferences, a new corporate website etc.