Most newspaper and media outlets will cover your Toastmasters event when you follow the basic rules of effective written communication for a news release. Today's organizations prefer articles, photos and story ideas via email. Below are key elements to include in your pitches.

Subject line

  • Begin with the date if your event is upcoming.
  • Be specific, i.e. “Feb. 6 free family fair” tells much more than “Press Release.”
  • Tell your story ideas i.e. “Disabled people learn to surf” peaks more interest in a moment than “Story idea.”

Lead time

  • Know each publication’s lead time.
  • Newspapers may need 1 to 2 weeks.
  • Magazines may need 4 to 6 weeks.

Message content

  • Be succinct.
  • Stay focused.
  • Write straight forward as if you were talking to a friend about your story.
  • Write for your audience: the editor and readers.
  • What would they want to know?
  • Why would this be important to them?
  • What would you say if you only had 100 words to tell us about your subject?

Contact information

  • Provide it!
  • Read your email often in case the editor has a question for you - they have tight deadlines.
  • Make sure your website works.


  • Submit articles or photos of an event that has happened shortly after it takes place.
  • A Toys for Tots Christmas event is more appropriately published in December than in March.
  • Send via email whenever possible.
  • Send in high resolution.
  • Most photos copied from websites are too small and will not publish well.
  • Include captions that tell editors in a nutshell what is happening in the photo and who the people are.


  • If you pay for a sign to say, “Circus Coming to the Fairgrounds Saturday,” that's ADVERTISING
  • If you put the sign on the side of an elephant and walk him around town that's PROMOTION.
  • If the elephant walks through the mayor's garden and the media reports on it, that's PUBLICITY.
  • If you can get the mayor to laugh about it, that's PUBLIC RELATIONS.

Initial content above compiled and documented updated 09-06-2013 by Michael Varma, DTM, Founder's District Public Relations Office 2009-2010

District Updates

IG: @founders_district_toastmasters/

FB: @/FoundersToastmasters

LI: @foundersdistricttoastmasters

YT: @FoundersDistrict

Opt In for Texts:  Text founders to 8444317575



We build new clubs and support all clubs in achieving excellence.

The names "Toastmasters International", "Toastmasters", and the Toastmasters International emblem are trademarks protected in the United States, Canada, and other countries where Toastmasters Clubs exist. Unauthorized use is prohibited.