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Sample Press Release Makeover
"After" Version

Review the "before" version of this sample makeover of a news release.

Below is my diagnosis of the shortcomings in the "before" version of Wristies' news release.

A good formula for writing a headline that speaks to media gatekeepers is to answer the question, “What’s the benefit, and for whom?” This kind of headline enables the editor or producer to know at a glance why the product, service or event is newsworthy and to assess its relevance to their target audience.

The “before” version of this release failed to say who would need this product and why, so that media people could easily toss it, thinking, “Our readers aren’t ice fishermen.” In addition, while Wristies have been in the market for years, the product name doesn’t communicate as much as an explanation of why people need them. Since there were several kinds of users targeted by the new model of Wristies, including motorcyclists and people with chronically cold hands, I recommended different versions of this release specifically for those users.

The original version also wandered all over the place, trying to cram in the complete history of Wristies and details about other models of Wristies. The revised release includes the story of the product’s invention, since it’s so unusual and interesting, but otherwise focuses on the benefits of the product for the audience at hand.

I moved the price and sizes to the last paragraph, where people whose business it is to read releases would expect to find that information.

Finally, whenever your publicity angle involves something new, be sure to use the word "New" in your headline. This immediately makes most media gatekeepers interested.

Now here is the revised version of the news release, which I recommended be supplemented by versions for motorcyclists, people with cold hands because of medical conditions, and other top populations targeted by the new shorter style of Wristies.

The "After" Version

For: Wristies, Inc., 650 Suffolk St., Lowell, MA 01854.
Contact: Susan Gregory, 978-937-9500 or

For immediate release

Cold Hands Indoors? Wristies Has A Stylish New Solution For Computer Workers And Others Who Do Intricate Finger Work

Bedford, MA, March 6, 2003 – Nearly every office has at least one person with chronically cold hands who either types while wearing knit gloves with the fingers crudely snipped off or constantly complains about having stiff, frozen hands. Wristies, an award-winning line of fingerless gloves crafted from thin, soft Polartec fleece, has just introduced a fingerless glove that more fashionably warms the hands of people who need to keep their dexterity intact.

“Like our regular Wristies, the new short Wristies come in eight colors, so that someone can choose the look they like for warming their hands,” says Susan Gregory, president of Wristies. “Compared with original Wristies, which are designed to warm up the gap between a winter jacket and mittens or gloves, Short Wristies are three inches shorter so that they warm up cold hands while leaving fingers free and staying clear of sleeves and cuffs.”

Invented ten years ago by then-10-year-old K-K Gregory, Wristies have earned acclaim from the media, lovers of the outdoors and those with arthritis or lupus for their ability to keep hands warm with comfort and attractiveness. In 2000, the company received the Apex Award from Malden Mills for the innovativeness of Wristies.

Short Wristies retail for $9.50 and come in adult sizes small and large. Each pair carries a tag telling the story of their invention while young K-K Gregory was building a snow fort with her brother. Wristies are available at select retail stores, catalogs, on the web at and by telephone at 978-937-9500.

Write News Releases That Attract Media and Boost Sales
Learn the crucial differences between a so-so news release and one that gets you onto the airwaves or into print.  You get 24 before-and-after transformations of news releases to study and use as models.  Learn to write better news releases.






Press Release Makeover Course

Want to learn to perform makeovers like this one - and get paid for your skill?  Check out the Marketing Protégé Program, a one-on-one tutorial that trains you to become a marketing consultant in 10 weeks.

Copyright 2003 Marcia Yudkin.  All rights reserved.


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