A news release that provides journalists and other readers an accessible, complete account of your research should contain the following elements. (Condensed from Chapter 10 of Explaining Research):

  1. An informative top that includes institutional, contact, and embargo information
  2. A clear compelling headline
  3. A tight "lede" that concisely conveys the essence of the research findings
  4. A high "nut graf" that tells the journalist or lay reader why the story is important
  5. A high "news peg" that gives information on the scientific publication or other reason for issuing the release
  6. An inverted pyramid style that summarizes the key concepts first, with background relegated to later in the release
  7. Concise explanations of the scientific concepts
  8. Caveats about the research
  9. A broader perspective on how the findings fit into the research field
  10. Full credit to all the participants
  11. Unobtrusive titles, rather than long-winded names of professorships, etc.
  12. "Real" quotes that sound like something a person would really have uttered
  13. No subjective hype words, such as "breakthrough," leading expert," etc.
  14. No unattributed subjective statements
  15. Reader-friendly use of technical terms. For example, definitions on first usage and use of only those terms necessary to tell the story
  16. Comparative measures that tells readers how big, small, etc. something is in relation to a popular object
  17. Vivid analogies and descriptions of concepts and experiments
  18. A conflict-of-interest statement
  19. Compelling visuals such as images, animations, and video
  20. A comprehensive account of the research that goes beyond the perfunctory "wire service" version