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Veterinary Hospital Journalism 101: Benefit From an Effective Press Release

0 Comments Posted by Mark Feltz in Blogs, Marketing, Press Release, Veterinary Marketing, Websites on Wednesday, July 11th, 2012.

by Mark Feltz, DVM
VetNetwork, LLC

Has your veterinary hospital done something particularly exciting recently? Did you win an award for your exemplary services; perhaps you spoke at a local career day, or will be hosting a holiday party to raise money for a local charity or humane society? Don’t keep it to yourself – write about it. Your local media is always looking for the next local story, so why not write a veterinary press release to include your animal hospital in the conversation?

What is a Veterinary Marketing Press Release?

A press release is a simply written story that is sent to media outlets for publishing. It typically serves to announce new and exciting news, such as awards, new products and services, upcoming events, or recent news-worthy accomplishments. Your veterinary marketing press releases can be a stand-alone announcement, or serve to generate a full-fledged feature story about your veterinary hospital in your local media outlets. You and your veterinary hospital should be benefiting from this often-overlooked (and free!) veterinary marketing and advertising tool, and here’s how.

10 Tips on How to Write an Effective Veterinary Press Release:

  • Make it interesting. Don’t waste time with a story that even you wouldn’t care to read. View the information objectively and ask yourself whether it’s truly newsworthy for your community. It’s important to wait until there is something interesting, otherwise the news outlet and general public may not take you seriously. This will also help build your credibility and increase the likelihood that media outlets will listen to you the next time you reach out.
  • Back it up! Use quotes, statistics, and images to help bring your story to life.
  • Grab the reader’s attention. Catchy and clear headlines that summarize the main points are important. Just as newspaper headlines serve to grab a reader’s attention, this is also true for a veterinary press release. It may help to peruse the front page of newspapers, such as The New York Times, to get a sense of what these headlines should convey.
  • Write like a journalist.A veterinary marketing press release should be written as you would like it to appear in a news story. Think – and write – like a journalist. What is the most important information that needs to hit the readers, and how?
  • Follow basic journalism 101. Lead your story with a date and place, and follow with a sentence that grabs the reader’s attention. Next, the first paragraph sums up the press release content by covering the what, why, and how’s.
  • Get to the facts! Keep sentences short, concise, and fact-based. Try not to use fancy, flowery language. Readers want to know the facts; they are not interested in how verbose of a writer you can be.
  • Make each word count. The article should be no more than ½ – 1 page, double-spaced. Just remember: the shorter, the better.
  • Lead readers to your veterinary hospital’s front door. Include a descriptive paragraph about your veterinary practice so the media outlet and reader know who you are. Make sure to include a link to your veterinary website.
  • Provide contact details. Conclude with your hospital’s contact information so the news outlet can obtain supplementary information from you when necessary. The easier you make their job, the more likely they are to bite.
  • Signal the end. Mark the conclusion of your veterinary press release with three #’s in the center of the page.

Too often, veterinary practice owners and veterinary hospital managers overlook the possibility and effectiveness of veterinary marketing press releases in generating free advertising. Though advertisements certainly have their advantages, an often more efficient – and certainly cost effective route – is a simple and exciting story told through the local papers. We all know everyone loves a good pet story. So go ahead, start writing, and get your veterinary hospital’s story told!

If you don’t have the time to write your own press releases, VetNetwork can help. Call today to see how we can get your stories into your local media outlets.


Copyright © VetNetwork, LLC / Mark Feltz, DVM,

VetNetwork – Marketing Solutions for Veterinarians and Veterinary Hospitals
www.vetnetwork.com
603-743-4321

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