Demystifying the Press Release Format + Free, Easy-to-Use Template

Contact: John Smith
Phone: (123) 456-7890

Release Date or Dateline

A release date indicates when you want your press release news to be published or written about. Add the timeline for when you want your press release to be published or written about in the top-left corner of your press release and in all caps. You can indicate if you want your press release news written about or published immediately or at a future time.

If your press release is ready to be distributed right away, include the words “FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE” at the top of your press release.

If you want the media to hold onto your press release, but you are sending it to be certain they get it before a specific date, it’s called an “embargoed” release. In that case, put the words “Embargoed for Release” in the top left-hand corner and then add the date and time you want the press release and any related media stories to go live.


A press release headline appears at the top and center of your press release but below the logo, contact information, and release date. Keep your headline short and to the point, typed in 14-point size and centered. Try to stay within the 65- to 80-character range, and use language that is clear and easy to understand.

Since the headline is usually the most eye-catching part of your press release, you want it to compel people to read your press release. It should reflect the newsworthy angle of your release; your newsworthy angle should tell your target audience why they should care about your news. Then, when you distribute your release to journalists who share that audience, they are more likely to publish your story because it is clear why their audiences would care.


A subheader is about 120 characters in length and appears directly below your headline. Subheaders allow you to capture readers’ attention and help them better understand what your press release is about. It gives you the opportunity to develop your story angle further with a teaser that entices further reading. It should be formatted in 12-point Times New Roman font and in title case. Ideally, they should be italicized.

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