I love the post by Jean-Jacques Maleval, editor of Storage Newsletter that lists words he thinks should be avoided in press releases.
However Jean-Jacques is realistic: he knows that clients and agencies love breathy hyperbole, even if they know that the better editors will remove them in any coverage. However he begs PRs to take notice, asking “Would it be possible – at least once – to send me a press release, just one, without all these garbages?”.
Personally I tend to agree with Jean-Jacques. Whilst we don’t want to live in a world where press releases simply list dull facts, going over the top destroys credibility with the readers who are potential customers.
I’d also like to add another pet hate of mine to the list. Comparative terms need a baseline against which the new product is compared. Saying “20% more performance” might sound good, but is meaningless. 20% more performance than the company’s previous product? 20% more performance than the best product in the market? 20% more performance than a potato?
Like Jean-Jacques, I don’t expect change. In fact, with more and more online publications simply cutting and pasting release texts rather than matching the high-quality journalism seen on sites like Storage Newsletter, we’ll see press release language get even more extreme.