Press release Tips and addresses

This list of contacts and these tips have been developed over the years to get to specifically those reporters that cover progressive issues and stories, but other reporters should be contacted as well.

On this page (click here) you can view press releases done for various press conferences, protests, or events as an example of one way to do press releases. This is a older style, and there are other ways to do it, but I like the narrative style in the form of a past tense news article. This style is from the days before email press releases, so uses some older ways of formatting that really aren't necessary any more.

The media doesn't usually copy and paste straight from a press release like they used to, (except those released from the white house) but they pay more attention when things are written in the news style in which they write. A press release should sound like news and not like an ad. They also prefer to get their own quotes, instead of using those provided, but since they have a hard copy, the quotes are "safe" for them to use (being vetted) and also give them a good idea of what they'll find if they come and cover the story. They'll regularly show up and ask for the person quoted in the release for an interview, so it also serves to direct them to the people the group has chosen to be spokespersons. I always follow up with the press when they show up to "steer" them to the people they need to interview, and usually provide "talking points" to the group, so everyone has some quick reference to the salient points to make and can more easily stay on message.

The second paragraph, as well as subsequent paragraphs interspersed between the quotes, should have the basic hooks that get the media to cover any story: controversy, criticism, corruption, victims, anger, passion, politics, religion, children, visual imagery, publicity stunts, etc. In the case of TV media, something moving, colorful, with action, participation; a performance of sorts, is best.

Notice all references are hotlinked with relevant URLs; names are all hotlinked with email addresses, and at the bottom are more links (for some Press Releases) linking to pertinent information and resources on the issue. All this is for the press to do their own research (where you guide them) on the issue, to help them write their story and also to see that it's a bigger story than they first thought; so worth their effort. They can take this info to the editor and show how much research they've already done to impress the editor with the depth of the story and help get it published or broadcast. They become your PR agent inside.

Press Releases shouldn't be that long. Always print copies of the release (single page) and relevant research to put in a "press package" to hand to the media at the event, and, in the case that a cameraperson comes without a reporter, they can take that back to the station for the copy editor to use.

The who, what, when, where, why is all covered in the first paragraph and for a "news alert" form of release, that will do. Even though the longer version takes more time, I think it's worth it because it looks more professional and gains some credibility, so helps get the coverage and credibility the event needs. The 3 pound signs at the bottom, ###, are an unnecessary holdover from the old days, when you had to tell the early fax machines that it was the "end of transmission", but it says to reporters these days, "I've been doing this a long time", I understand the inside secrets of the media, and so vets your credibility to them.

Send to all your contacts in BCC, (blind copies) so they see that it was sent to others, but don't know who. They'll go to the morning editorial meeting and push for coverage and assignment to the story, and others, who have gotten the release, will add their support for coverage of the issue.

The below list of email addresses are the basic places to send any press release on any issue. There are other people at each of these media outlets where a press release should be sent on a particular subject; for example, on the issue of a counter recruitment action at a local school board, I would also send a release (to the print media) to those reporters assigned the education beat, like John Ensslin at the Rocky Mountain News in Denver: (ensslinj@RockyMountainNews.com).

In some cases, where warranted, also send your release to feature writers, like Diane Carman (dcarman@denverpost.com) at the Denver Post or Mike Littwin (littwinm@RockyMountainNews.com) at the Rocky Mountain News.

Any organization of any size should be sending at least a press release every week on some subject. The regularity establishes familiarity and builds bridges. Any change in the organization, like website additions, new products or services, seminars, meetings, announcements, polls, lectures, attendance at events, etc. is a reason to send a press release. Yes, they'll ignore most of it, but the familiarity makes you and your organization the "go to" resource for them, and then you can build bridges to cross later. Give them the story ideas you think they need to cover.

Much longer and more complete list of Colorado media contact emails, phone number, and FAX numbers here

Gazette:
smcmillin@gazette.com, millman@gazette.com, noreen@gazette.com, jeff@gazette.com, dean.toda@gazette.com, rwiens@gazette.com, dacord@gazette.com, stewart@gazette.com, bean@gazette.com
INDY:
jweiss@csindy.com, newsroom@csindy.com, deyoanna@csindy.com
Rocky Mountain News:
frazierd@RockyMountainNews.com, brennanc@RockyMountainNews.com, fosterd@RockyMountainNews.com, garnerj@RockyMountainNews.com, littwinm@RockyMountainNews.com, Torkelsonj@RockyMountainNews.com
Denver Post:
mrochester@denverpost.com, jtaylor@denverpost.com, chubbard@denverpost.com, newsroom@denverpost.com
KRDO channel 13:
d.rose@krdotv.com, krdonews@krdotv.com, m.lewis@krdotv.com
KKTV, channel 11:
nmatesi@kktv11news.com, action@kktv11news.com, bagin@kktv11news.com
KOAA, channel 5/30 (online form also):
dbloom@koaa.com, cblack@koaa.com, mkeleve@koaa.com
KRXM (Fox21):
info@kxrm.com
NewsBlab (Mike Collette):
newsblab@gmail.com
AP:
info@ap.org
UPI:
tips@upi.com, daybook@upi.com
Reuters:
editor@reuters.com
National papers:
http://www.mrc.org/MediaAddresses/mediaaddresses.asp
PR Web (free PR service to thousands):
http://www.prweb.com/about.php
Another free press release service:
http://www.free-press-release.com/submit/
List of Colorado papers and TV:
http://www.colorado.gov/colorado-government/todaymenu.html
List of alternative media:
http://users.bigpond.net.au/trt/
Press Release writing tips/tricks:
http://www.ebookbroadcast.com/resources/prsecrets.html

Much longer and more complete list of Colorado media contact emails, phone numbers, and FAX numbers here