Ok, I get it, a lot of breweries don't have an in-house ability to write a press release, or the funds to hire someone, so I am giving you the most basic of templates here to send information to journalists.
We want to write about you, we really do, but after the past few years of not being able to travel around festivals and places, it's got ever harder to keep up with what's going on, so here's a small tool to make your, and my, job easier.
Generally, most places will have a brew schedule, just as we have a writing and filing of copy schedule, so please think about longer lead times for people like me who write some columns in advance.
Rough rule of thumb, you should think about sending out a release four-six weeks in advance of the beer's release - with the planned release date and high res artwork mocked up on a can/bottle included, on a white background is generally what's needed.
Ok, so here is just one way that you can write a release - it's not absolutely cast in stone, but if you don't have experience, it's a good structure to start.
Headline Goes Here
Standfirst goes here - this is a brief overview of what the story/release/brewery news is about to whet the reader's appetite.
Intro: this should succinctly sum up the message you are trying to get across, don't go big on the hyperbole, save that for later.
Body text: this is where you can jazz it up a bit, give more detail, flesh out the story, why was the beer made, who came up with the idea, how did it come about, what actually is it including style, ABV, format it is available in, where is it available from and when?
And if a beer release isn't the point of the release, please remember: who, what, where, when, why and how - the answers to these questions are the core of nearly every story.
Notes to Editors:
I CANNOT OVERSTATE THE IMPORTANCE OF THESE! If you include a boiler plate bit about your brewery (which brings us back to: who, what, where, when, why and how) you will imprint yourself in writers' minds. Also, don't be shy to include links to 'our brewing process' or offer to answer any questions a journalist may have. Trust me, when I was first starting, the releases and people who helped me feel more confident in my questions about what is, let's not forget, a speciality subject, got written about way more than snooty elitist berks!
A PHONE NUMBER! I don't want to hear about how you hate talking on the phone, if I'm on deadline and I need something in the next half hour, trust me, I'm not waiting for you to answer an email, I'm going to someone I can speak to personally, who will reassure me they are sending it ASAP.
Make sure you have a high-res image, lifestyle shots are normally best reserved for social media, packaged beer shots on a white background are vital. Preferably, send me links to permanent online product shot libraries.