A wave of press can bring major benefits to your business.

More traffic to your website, links from big websites, and new customers.

But, ask anyone who has ever tried to generate press coverage for their business. It’s hard work and there are no guarantees you’ll receive coverage — no matter how compelling your story is.

In this guide, I’m going to show you how to write press release emails that secure coverage for your business or clients in the outlets you care about.

I’ll show you how to find the contacts at media companies to reach out to with your pitch, assets to prepare before reaching out, and how to automatically schedule your emails and follow-up if you don’t get replies.

And best of all? Real email templates that you can use in your next PR campaign.

Let’s dive in.

Why Handle Your Own PR Campaigns?

Press release distribution services like PRWeb, E.Releases, or Realwire can handle your PR emails for you.

Sounds convenient?

Well, they are convenient, but there’s a cost. Firstly, you’ll be charged for it (usually with no guarantee of results). 

Second, you don’t have full control over your distribution.

By handling your PR campaigns in-house, you’ll build relationships with editors and journalists at industry publications. In the future, you can reach out again and easily secure coverage.

As well as that, handling your own campaigns is a simple way to stand out. Over 60% of press releases are distributed via wire services, so sending emails yourself is also an effective way to show journalists and editors that there’s a real person behind the brand and story.

By taking control of your campaign and doing the work yourself, you’ll get more replies and more media placements. 

Finding Contact Details for Journalists and Editors

As you’re handling your PR outreach process yourself, you’ll need to spend time on research and preparation.

An essential part of the process is sourcing the best people to reach out to.

You don’t want to be emailing generic emails that never get checked, like: contact@company.com or support@company.com.

Aim to find personal email addresses of journalists who have written about topics similar to your story before.

1. Contact Details in Journalist Bylines

Look for journalists writing regularly about your industry. Then, head to their byline on publications they write for.

In most cases, they’ll have publicly available contact details — because they want to hear about stories that match their area of focus.

For example, if we head to TechCrunch and click on an Author byline, you’ll find contact details. 

However, you’ll need to pitch more than one journalist, and not all of them will have their email listed in their bylines.

Luckily, there’s still hope. 

There are various methods to find emails even if they’re not obvious (we covered the most effective email finding strategies here).

2. Start a Conversation on Twitter

Most journalists are active on Twitter. If you’re considering pitching them, you can Tweet them. 

Share a few basic details about your story, and ask a simple question like: “Can I send you more info?” or “Can we connect over email?” 

If you’re promising an interesting story, most journalists will be happy to share their email with you.

This strategy has another added benefit: when your email lands in their inbox, they’ll recognize your name and be more likely to reply (even if your email isn’t perfect).

6 Steps To Making Your Press Release Emails Stand Out in Journalists’ Inbox

Journalists and editors receive pitches from brands like yours every single day.

If you leave the editor with more questions than answers, they’ll skip past your email. Game over.

In order to stand out and ensure your pitch doesn’t get skimmed over and archived you need to make your press release email clear, easy to read and get straight to the point.

Here are key ways to do that:

1. Highlight the Best Part of Your Story

Your PR emails need to stand out and grab your recipients’ attention.

Make life easy for your recipients by showing them the best part of your story upfront. Don’t vaguely describe it and make them need to follow-up with you to understand your pitch.

For example:

  • What’s the most exciting takeaway from the story?

  • Who does it affect? 

  • Is anyone notable involved?

The more detail you add, the faster a journalist can process whether it’s a good fit for their publication or not.

If they like your story, they’ll be able to quickly follow-up to ask you any extra details they need.

You can even include the key value proposition in your email subject line. This can work as long as you keep it brief.

2. Mention Every Detail a Journalist Needs

To make your email digestible, follow a simple basic structure that includes all of the details your recipient will need to move forward with your press release.

Every word in your email needs to count. Eliminate all fluff that won’t help the journalist understand why you’re emailing them, and what the story is about.

Elements to include in a good press release email include:

Why it’s interesting: Make it clear why your story is worth their time. What’s the main takeaway? Who will be interested in it? What was the outcome?

Proposed headline: Every newsworthy story needs a good headline. This could be made clear in your email body, or, be your subject line.

Timeline: Make it clear that this is a brand new story that’s timely and relevant. If your story happened six months ago, it’s not newsworthy anymore.

Who are you?: Include a short summary of who you are, your company, and what you do. This will make your involvement clear.

Contact details: Event though you’ve sent your outreach from your own email address, reiterate that they can reply to you if they need more information. It’ll instantly make it easier for the journalist knowing they don’t have to deal with a faceless PR distribution service and there’s a real person behind the email. You can even add your phone number.

3. Share Extra Resources like Press Kits & Relevant Creatives

Adding a link to useful resources journalists is a simple way to ensure the people you contact have all the information they need.

If you leave out key details and they email you back, your story might end up being sidelined for another in order to meet deadlines.

Before you launch your first campaign, prepare a document with all of the necessary details they’ll need to publish your content.

This can include:

  • Details about your company

  • Additional resources to use in the story

  • More images and creatives

Show the people you’re pitching that you’re organized and serious about being featured and you’ll be prioritized over brands that aren’t being as helpful.

Your goal is to make the writing process as simple as possible for them.

4. Should You Include “Press Release” In Your Subject Line?

Your subject line frames the contents of your email.

Despite that, you don’t need to include “Press Release” in your subject line. In fact, it’s not good practice.

When journalists see a subject line like: “Press Release for Immediate Distribution!” it’s a red flag.


First, it’s clearly not personalized to them.

Second, it doesn’t add any value to your email. As soon as they open your email it will be clear that you’re emailing about a press release.

Instead, use your subject line to frame the story you’re going to pitch, or even as a mini headline.

Here are some examples that could work:

  • Google launches clothing line for remote workers

  • PiedPiper raises series D funding - interested in breaking the story? 

  • Pro tennis player turned marathon runner - interested in a profile?

These subject lines might look strange out of context. 

But if the press release or story you're pitching is related to any of those, it makes more sense. The people you’re emailing will instantly know why you’re emailing them and what the press release is about. 

In the first example, if you emailed journalists in the tech industry who have published stories on Google’s regular product launches before, it would be interesting to them. The second would work for a journalist who writes about startups and investments. The third could be sent to a journalist covering sports topics — specifically, tennis or running. The subject line will catch their attention and they’ll want to learn more.

You can also use your subject line to simply incite curiosity in your recipients. These won’t provide much information, but you can expand in the rest of your email.

For example:

  • Interested in this story about [specific topic the journalist writes about]?

  • Writing about [Company] in your column?

Once again, these aren’t complicated. You’ll need to customize them to your recipient and the topic your press release is about.

To summarize: keep your subject line simple and direct.

5. What About Adding Your Press Release as PDF?

Simple answer: No.

Including attachments can hurt your email deliverability and will lead to your emails landing in the spam folder.

Also, no one likes opening attachments from strangers.

Luckily, you don’t need to add attachments to get replies. Often, adding your entire press release as a PDF shows that you’re emailing as many publications as possible looking for features.

Focus on answering the main questions your recipient will have in your email body, and give them a clear way to get in touch with you with questions.

If you do need to add extra resources, use a simple link with the URL visible. 

For example, a link to a Google Drive or Dropbox folder. Even those can negatively affect deliverability, so you still need to use them with caution.

Now, let’s look at three press release email templates you can use in your own outreach.

6. Use Proper Outreach Software

The best cold email outreach software allow you to add personalization into your journalist outreach emails.

Trust me, journalists receive tens, if not hundreds of pitches every day.

You need a way to stand out.

You can either manually add personalization to every cold email, or you can use a cold email platform like QuickMail to personalize hundreds of emails at the same time.

With QuickMail, you can add custom content to every email you send, even if you're sending high-volume campaigns.

You can do this with QuickMail. Get started with a free 14-day trial.

3 Effective Press Release Email Templates

You know the theory behind writing a good PR email, but now it’s time to put it into practice.

To help you get started, here is a selection of PR email templates you can use to land more coverage.

Press Release Email Template #1

In this first template, an imaginary company is releasing a new product and running a charity donation program with it. Depending on the product category and the charity in question, the journalists and publications you pitch will differ.

As you can see, the template makes the main parts of the story clear. There’s also a link to a Dropbox folder with more details. 

If the journalist your pitching covers the industry the program is happening in, it’ll be easy for them to start writing the story or reach out to you for more information.

Subject: [Company] donating $1 to charity for every purchase - relevant to you?

Hi {{prospect.first_name}},

As you’ve written extensively about [Topic] for {{company.name}}, I thought you’d be interested in this new launch.

[Company] has just released [Product Name] and we’re donating $1 from every purchase to charity.

We’re launching this initiative on [Date]. Here’s a Dropbox folder with more details on the launch: [link] 

If you have any questions, you can reach me at this email address.

Think your readers would be interested in it?



Press Release Email Template #2

Similar to example #1, this template focuses on building a relationship with the editor you’re pitching. Your opening line proves that you’ve specifically researched and chosen them to pitch. It’ll be a refreshing change from generic PR distribution emails they receive most days.

Subject: Story for {{company.name}}?

Hi {{prospect.first_name}},

Enjoyed your latest article on [Similar Company] - awesome that you were the first outlet to break the news about [particular detail in the story]. 

I’m writing up a press release about [Company]’s latest Series A funding. It hasn’t yet been announced, but we’re planning on breaking the news this week. You can find the key details in this Google Doc: [link]

Is that something you would be interested in publishing a story on for {{company.name}}’s site?



Press Release Email Template #3

This template works because it’s specific and designed to help a journalist quickly understand if your pitch is right for them.

If the journalist wants to cover the story, they’ll know that the new product you’re launching is solving a problem they’ve written about before. It shows you’ve done your research.

As well as that, you provide a link to more information on the product launch and show them how to get in touch with questions.

Subject: [Company] launching [Product] to help with [Common problem]

Hi {{prospect.first_name}},

Enjoyed your story on [Topic] in [Publication] — it changed my perspective on [Topic]!

Considering you regularly write on [Topic], I wanted to let you know that [Company] is planning on launching a brand new tool to help with [Common problem].

Here’s a link with more details: [link]

If you have questions, I run marketing at [Company]. I'd be happy to answer questions over email or call me on +002112344321



Sending Personalized Press Release Emails At Scale

I’m guessing you’re not emailing a single journalist asking for a feature.

You have a list, with 10 - 50+ journalists and editors who all seem like a good fit.

Emailing them all one-by-one is going to take hours.

To make things faster, try QuickMail. You can import all of your contacts, with personalized details such as first name, their company name, job title, and even completely custom opening lines to use.

You can then schedule all of your emails to send at once, without compromising on personalization.

Here’s how it works.

First, you’ll need to organize your contacts in a spreadsheet (Google Sheets works well).

I’d recommend adding a custom opening line where you write a completely personalized introduction for every email.

You’ll notice that in the templates above, they all start with a personalized note.

Luckily, that’s a simple thing to add, even if you’re emailing multiple journalists at once. To do it yourself, you’ll need to add a new column for your opening line In your spreadsheet of contacts.

It’ll look like this:

Then, inside the email composer, all you have to do is add an {{Opening_Line}} attribute to your template.

QuickMail will automatically add your opening line to every email that you send.

For example:

All of the places with an attribute in curly brackets will automatically fill based on the information stored in your spreadsheet.

Once your contacts have been imported into QuickMail and your email templates are ready, you can send and be confident knowing every email you sent is completely personalized with a high chance of getting a reply.

You can also add follow-up emails for situations where you don’t get a reply after several days. Considering most journalists are so busy it’s easy for emails to slip through the cracks. Following up after 3-5 days is an effective way to get your emails noticed and generate up to 55% more replies.

If you’re ready to launch your next press release campaign, you can start your trial of QuickMail here. You’ll have access to all the features you need to start sending successful campaigns and ensure more journalists open your emails.


Securing coverage for your company is hard work — but it’s supposed to be.

There are no shortcuts to writing personalized outreach emails to journalists. If you cut corners, it’ll be instantly apparent. 

Writing a concise, detailed, and personalized email will prove to your recipients that you respect their time and are willing to help.

If you don’t get a reply to your first email, don’t worry. You can always send a friendly reminder a few days later.