Impact Insights Blog

Thrilled, Delighted, Excited: How to Avoid a Lame Press Release

December 14, 2022

Filomena FanelliApologies to anyone reading this, as you may recognize yourself in the content below. If I’m being honest about this, I used to be the kind of person I’m calling out here, so I get it. Even PR professionals like me – and my treasured colleagues – fall back on bad habits from time-to-time and, in our early days, might not even be aware of our sins. This is one of them: the trite press release quote.

Overused, filled with sweeping generalizations and far too enthusiastic, the predictable executive quote is seemingly everywhere, yet says nothing at all. Companies and the people who help them craft quips profess that their leaders are thrilled to use a new software solution, delighted to join a company, excited about an event, and pleased to be recognized with an honor.

As I share this observation, I cringe and long to look back at the many releases I’ve drafted over the years or the ones that have passed my desk and been approved for send-off. You’re probably wondering why I care so much.

Now that this no-no is on your radar, what can you do to lend a fresh, authentic voice to those canned PR quotes?

  1. Check yo self! Give the release a scan and look for meaningless, overused and repetitive words. Then go back to the drawing table.
  2. Reserve the right to remain silent. If quotes are vapid, it’s totally fine to include one good one instead of two or three. Sometimes less is more.
  3. Get to the why. Think about what’s special or novel, or what problem you’re solving, and speak to that.
  4. Break out the thesaurus. Look for synonyms and don’t be afraid to opt for the simple words. They’re refreshing and often well-received by readers.
  5. Stand in your truth. Share that whatever it is you’re announcing has been a company goal for five years or that combining forces will allow you to meet needs you couldn’t previously. Don’t be afraid to say that you’ve made adjustments to move with the times or that your customers were looking for more and that XYZ helps deliver it.


One last point… Unless you’re literally jumping up and down and squealing, you’re probably not that thrilled and it’s totally okay.