Step-by-Step Guide to the Press Release Boilerplate
If you’re drafting a press release on behalf of your brand or business, the “boilerplate” is a key component that adds color and credibility to the focus of the announcement.
While frequently written off as unimportant compared to dynamic press release features like eye-catching headlines, it’s vital to a press release’s success to get the boilerplate right.
In fact, when it comes to media contacts, this short organizational bio might be the first encounter with your company many journalists or editors to whom you send your press release will get. With that in mind, it’s important to focus on making a good impression.
Below, we provide essential details about the boilerplate section of a press release, including:
- What the boilerplate is in a press release
- The proper format for a boilerplate in a press release
- Examples of press release boilerplates
- Key tips for writing a press release boilerplate
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What is a boilerplate in a press release?
The boilerplate is a concise paragraph that provides background on the company or organization that’s issuing the press release. It’s also an expected industry-standard part of any press release in general.
Shared at the end of a press release, and akin to the “About Us” page of a website, boilerplates tend to include fundamental information about a company’s products and services, as well as big-picture details, like overall goals and market presence.
This term, “boilerplate,” was coined in the 19th century, referring to the way in which printing presses created steel templates during the printing process. Modern-day boilerplates essentially serve the same purpose—brief and impactful tools that are used again and again.
A proper boilerplate is both a great introduction to a company for the publications a press release is pitched to, and a recognizable reminder for future press release pitches.
Within the format of a press release, the boilerplate always appears at the same point in its layout, underneath the main body of the copy and ultimately rounding off the announcement. Every journalist that reads a press release expects to find the boilerplate in the same place.
In PR, the boilerplate serves a few different purposes. Not only does it bring clarity to who the issuer of a press release is, but it can also help boost SEO. When you distribute a press release with a memorable boilerplate, it can have a positive impact on outreach strategy.
How do you format a boilerplate in a press release?
As mentioned, in the standard press release format, the boilerplate appears below the main body of the announcement copy, but above the contact information for press queries.
Check out our guide on how to properly format a press release.
When it comes to writing a boilerplate section, keep in mind that shorter is better. A boilerplate should be no longer than 100 words, or else you risk losing a reader’s attention.
In the boilerplate, make sure the media contact you’re sending the press release to has all the necessary information they need about your company or organization. Leaving out anything can force a reporter into unneeded work to find out who you are, and risk their rejection.
While there’re no hard rules on what information to include in a boilerplate, publications will likely expect the following:
- What the company or organization does. Aim to include details that explain your vision and purpose, products and services, as well as your target audience. Also, highlight your position in a larger context by explaining what problems you’re solving.
- Where the company or organization operates. For instance, what markets are you in and what areas do you serve? This is crucial information that will help editors determine if your press release is a fit for their publication.
- Company or organization facts and figures. You might consider mentioning when the company was founded or how big it’s grown. Also, staff size or annual revenue.
- Company or organization awards and achievements. If your company won industry awards or received recognition, mention it. Not only does it boost credibility, but it gives reporters an incentive to cover your announcement.
What are examples of boilerplates in press releases?
The best way to learn is through inspiration. With that in mind, we’ve compiled a selection of boilerplates we believe check all the boxes.
While they all cover different industries, these boilerplates all state clearly who the company is and why it matters, as well as highlight its position and impact on a wider audience. Each provides a hyperlink to their website for easy verification. Use these to help craft your own.
As well as hyperlinking to the company’s website, this boilerplate highlights their tech as well as their successes within the industry.
About GameOn Technology
GameOn is based in San Francisco and was founded in 2014 with a shared passion for building innovative messaging products that serve the world of broadcast media. Using its proprietary bot platform, ChatOS, GameOn has designed, developed, and launched business solutions for many of the world’s largest sport, lifestyle, and media companies becoming an industry leader in user retention, engagement, and monetization in the applications space.
Those Coffee People
Short and sweet, this boilerplate reveals what part of the world the company is in and who they serve, and all in the very first line! It also touches on its mission to help a larger community.
About Those Coffee People
Those Coffee People is a specialist Colombian green coffee supplier directly serving cafes and roasters throughout the world who want the very best direct trade coffee. Our spirit of adventure and discovery enables us to source the best coffee Colombia has to offer. And working with an incredible network of local farmers, cooperatives, and logistics partners means we can deliver a seamless farm-to-cup experience.
Intelligent Relations and Net Positive Agency
Finally, here’s a boilerplate that announces Intelligent Relation’s recent acquisition of Net Positive Agency. Since the press release in question covers two companies, both are mentioned in the boilerplate to provide a media contact with a full overview of those involved.
About Intelligent Relations & Net Positive Agency
Intelligent Relations, a startup founded in 2020, offers a turnkey approach to traditional PR by leveraging deep AI analysis, powered by a talented team of PR professionals who help customers build a broader and more direct set of media relationships. Intelligent Relations is based in Boston, Massachusetts.
Net Positive Agency was founded in 2016 and helps startups and growing businesses position their brand and grow online. Net Positive specializes in accelerating online success, utilizing a team of highly experienced PR and SEO experts who curate and execute bespoke digital strategies.
What are the key tips for writing a press release boilerplate?
Since the boilerplate is such a standardized section of a press release, you’ll likely use it over and over, so why not get it right the first time? Having said that, there can still be some creative freedom when it comes to drafting your company boilerplate.
What the examples above demonstrate is that, while a boilerplate includes very fundamental details, it’s also subjective to the industry that you function within. With that in mind, if you follow the key tips below when starting to draft a boilerplate, rest assured you’ll be on the right track.
Re-read, review, and edit
Once you’ve written your boilerplate, read it. Then, read it again. Maybe even once more for good measure. This exercise will help you make sure your boilerplate is doing what it’s intended to do: educating and piquing the interest of the reporters reading it.
As you read it over, ask yourself, does each sentence provide value?
Doing your own editing of a boilerplate can prove to be tricky, so you can also consider asking a colleague or a professional to review your boilerplate. Remember, you can’t edit a boilerplate once a press release is distributed or published so this is an important step.
Also, keep in mind, while you might make minor tweaks to a boilerplate prior to submitting future press releases, the copy will tend to stay the same for each.
Ditch the jargon
While you’re editing the boilerplate, be on the lookout for use of jargon. For example, buzzwords with little meaning or overly specialized language. This often confuses, rather than impresses a reader, and most reporters are skilled at seeing through “fluff.”
Keep it short (but not too short)
Reporters see thousands of press releases submitted over the course of their careers, and they don’t have time to sift through them all. So, if a contact actually makes it all the way through your press release, that’s great news—just make sure your boilerplate isn’t too long!
Having said that, you don’t want the boilerplate to be too short either. You have to work on finding a sweet spot, wherein it provides plenty of information clearly in a very concise manner. As we said earlier, keeping it to 100 words or less is a good rule of thumb.
Backup your points
Facts and figures can go a long way because reporters love to see points made in a press release backed up with factual proof. Statistics can help to give a boilerplate more authority in a press release, and they should be included if it’s fitting.
For example, if your company recently expanded, consider stating how many new locations or offices have been opened or how many new employees have been brought on. If you’ve experienced “exponential growth,” perhaps mention revenue statistics.
Check out our other press release resources:
What is the best time to submit a press release?
What are the best press release distribution services?
Final words on press release boilerplates
As you can see, a boilerplate is a critical part of any press release. With this guide, you have all the tools you need to write a compelling one for your company or organization that will convey all the important information needed about you in just a few sentences.
But, we also know that writing the perfect boilerplate for your press release still might not come easy. Luckily, if you ever need a helping hand, Intelligent Relations has a team of PR specialists to help you craft your press release from start to finish.
Whether it’s a killer headline or a focused boilerplate, we can provide a perfect press release and develop a focused PR strategy to land you the media attention you deserve.