How to Write a Trade Show News Release that Turns Heads
These days there are an abundance of trade shows, representing different industries and focusing on different audiences. How do you ensure that your event’s news release stands out from the crowd?
While writing an event news release is a fairly routine task for communications and marketing professionals, it’s easy to fall in the trap of producing a stereotypical news release. It’s time to try new story angles that makes your trade show news release more interesting and newsworthy.
Remember to keep the five “Ws” and one “H” in mind when writing your news release and answer these core questions for your audience.
- Do away with standard headlines “xx company participates in xx conference”
Exhibitors will usually start their promotion one month prior to the start of a trade show, based on the promotional schedule of these large events. Your headline is the first opportunity to stand out from the competition.
Consider these common headlines: “xx Company Participates at xx Forum” or “xx Brand to Establish Strong Presence at xx Expo”. Headlines such as these are a dime a dozen and will attract less eyeballs to your message.
One way to create eye-catching headlines is to specify the highlights of your event. For example, the press release “Midea’s Exhibition at IMM Cologne 2017 Injects Personality into Kitchen Appliances”, mentions what Midea (WHO) is going to exhibit (HOW) at the IMM Cologne 2017 (WHERE & WHEN) – their new product line is (WHAT), which injects personality into kitchen appliances (WHY), rather than just telling audiences Midea is joining the event.
The second tactic is to incorporate the company’s exhibition theme and the key showcase product in the main headline, followed by the news of the company’s participation in the event in the sub-headline. Take the press release on “RECARO Automotive Seating unveils three performance seat concepts for all market segments” as an example. The headline emphasizes the launch of Recaro’s new seat concepts and demotes the news that the company will be participating in the 2017 North American International Auto Show to the sub-headline.
- Audiences are interested in HOW and WHY you are going to participate.
As communication professionals, we all know that we should share information that our target audiences are interested in.
Audiences reading event-related releases will be more interested in what the company plans to do at the event, e.g. the launch of a new product, or the announcement of a new corporate development plan. Therefore, always write with your audience’s interests in mind.
Consider this news release: “Huawei: Accelerating Carriers’ Cloud Transformation And Enabling The Digitization of Vertical Industries”. In this example, Huawei leveraged the speech from the senior management at the event to demonstrate HOW Huawei integrates cloud and network technology transformation to (WHY) support the development of the industrial Internet, and drive industry informatization.
Similarly, it can gain more attention from audiences if the release includes the key highlights of the event instead of a general summary. In the news release “Veritas Announces Global Strategic Partnership with Google to Deliver Enterprise-Ready Data Management to Google Cloud Platform and G Suite Customers”, Veritas highlighted the expanded partnership with Google in the headline and the content. This emphasizes the benefits of this partnership – providing customers with 360 Data Management capabilities to reduce data storage costs, increase compliance, and eDiscovery readiness. The less interesting event details are only mentioned towards the end of the release.
- More Advanced: Minimize the Brand Element
As with advertising, if the public perceives your promotion to be a hard-sell, they won’t buy it. Therefore, instead of selling the brand, customizing your content for your audience is the better approach, such as sharing the brand story.
The news release “Cosmetics: New Packaging Creates New Trends”, starts by sharing that “Cosmetics are all about aesthetics.” Then it breaks down the importance and the trends of packaging in the cosmetics industry nowadays: Eco-friendliness, Kidult/K-pop and Smart Packaging. The event and organizer details are only mentioned much later in the release. Although UBM is the biggest trade exhibitions organizer in Asia, it did not utilize its name as the main selling point of the release; instead it focused on new trends in the cosmetics industry.
Instead of asking audiences to join the event directly, BroadcastAsia 2017 attracts public attention in this release by sharing insights and trends of the film industry via the hot topic of Virtual Reality: “Why Virtual Reality is More Than Just a Buzzphrase for The Film Industry”.
While content is still king, multimedia elements can always draw more attention to your event message. However, writing a good event news release is similar to all other releases, namely that companies need to understand their audience’s needs in order to craft attention-grabbing stories.