Here at MediaHQ, we see hundreds of press releases being sent from our system on a weekly basis. PR agencies, government organisations, charities and in-house PR teams from some of the biggest organisations in Ireland use our system to get their message to the media and make the news. This week, we took a closer look at the PR success of one of our clients, Fota Wildlife Park.
Fota Wildlife Park is a 100 acre wildlife park located on Fota Island, Co.Cork, and is home to nearly 30 mammal and 50 bird species. Some of the animals roam freely with the visitors, such as the ring-tailed lemurs and wallabies. Other larger animals, including the giraffe and bison, live in paddocks with barriers where visitors can view the animals in a more natural environment.
There is no doubt that our environment has reached a pivotal point in recent history. Protecting and preserving wildlife is the main priority for the founders of Fota. As a conservation and educational charity, the income generated from the 465,000 people who visit the park annually finances the development and operation within the park itself. Fota Wildlife Park is one of the many organisations that use our platform to distribute their news on a regular basis. Recently, Fota has made the news for two wonderful reasons.
Tiger cub frenzy
Sumatran tigers are the rarest subspecies of tiger in the world and have been classified as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The wildlife park announced the birth of a male Sumatran tiger cub on the 25th of June 2019. Positive news stories are always appreciated in today’s climate, and as a result, the story made its way into many popular publications such as the Independent, and spread all over the country.
One of their most successful press releases distributed through our system was based on an enticing and exciting competition launched at the beginning August. The park receives almost half a million visitors a year. To celebrate their 10 millionth visitor, they offered the lucky winner a holiday break to South Africa including a Safari trip for two. The memorable trip was won by Galway native, Catherine Cullinane, and the story was featured in a range of national papers. This competition was undoubtedly effective in increasing public awareness of the business and their values.
Fota Wildlife Park have made effective use of competitions to boost public awareness of their organisation in recent months. Following the birth of four Asian lion cubs, the public were given the chance to name the babies that are now named Ri, Rain, Rani and Ravi. Similarly, they currently have a photograph competition running, in which photographs taken within the park from January 1st to August 31st 2019 will be judged. The winning 12 pictures will be used in next years Fota 2020 calendar.
Press release know-how
At MediaHQ, we offer our clients helpful PR tips and pointers when it comes to writing press releases. Róisín Fitzgerald, Marketing Manager at Fota Wildlife Park, offered some helpful advice of her own.
“When writing a press release, remember that journalists and editors receive hundreds of press releases a day, so it’s imperative to deliver the most newsworthy information in the headline or headlines and in the first paragraph. Also, write in a neutral tone and journalistic style and use quotes to add further information and context.”
Róisín Fitzgerald, Marketing Manager.
“I have been using the MediaHQ platform for several years now and I am delighted to say that Fota Wildlife Park’s press releases generally gain great coverage in the media including print, broadcast and online. It’s a great tool and an easy to use service.”
We encourage users to keep their releases short and relevant in order to grab the journalists attention. Fota Wildlife Park’s press release was approximately 500 words and was full of important useful info to make the journalist’s life easier. It included a clear breakdown of what the competition had involved, a brief history on the Fota Wildlife Park itself and the full list of winners and prizes. With a concise headline and a contact point for further queries, this press release managed to land a spot in some of Ireland’s national media outlets.