Make your sound bite sound like a real person is talking
A frustrated PR pro in one of my workshops said:
“Most quotes in press releases sound like the teacher in Charlie Brown cartoons: ‘Wah wah wah wah.’”
Indeed. Here’s a quote from a Pulitzer Prize-winning series on the declining health of 9/11 rescue workers:
“I’m begging for someone to help me,” Valenti said. “I do not want to die.”
“Answering the needs of e-tailers, our cutting-edge software product recognises the importance of clicks and mortar operations.”
“A turnkey solution, our best of breed product tests the performance of enhanced customer care.”
“Representing a radical step-change, our new product set tests the performance of enhanced customer care.”
Sadly, these quotes are so real sounding they could have been plucked randomly from any of the press releases I’ve reviewed this morning.
No wonder journalists complain about news release quotes. In a recent Greentarget survey of reporters:
- 50% kvetched that the language doesn’t sound natural in press release quotes.
- 34% groaned that PR quotes aren’t substantive enough.
- 9% had no complaints.
So how do you get the wah wah out?
Write Killer Bites
Half of reporters complain that quotes in releases don’t sound natural, according to a recent Greentarget survey. Maybe that’s why 78% of them don’t regularly use quotes from releases.
At NOT Your Father’s News Release — our two-day PR-writing workshop in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 17-18 — you’ll learn how to transform your quotations from bleh to brilliant.
You’ll steal techniques from Silver Anvil winners for making your sound bites sound better … and learn to avoid the worst PR quote clichés (PR Newswire sees 1,284 of these in a single month.)
Save $100 when you book by Sept. 14.