Copy doctor’s five dogged steps to reduce animal hero PR lead from 92 to 64 words (30%!)

 Another day in the life of PR on the newswire:  #Media #PR #Comms #media #pr #comms #humberpr #ofisandby

I love dogs but this one just got too verbally overweight. 

Headlines

Canadian Canines Crowned For Saving Lives

Nice try with alliteration; doesn’t observe ‘down style’ or only using capital letters with proper nouns, and incorrectly capitalizes ‘for.’ Try this:

  1. Canadian canines crowned for saving lives
  2. Canadian lifesaving canines crowned

The alliteration still works.

Three heroic hounds welcomed into this year’s Purina Animal Hall of Fame

Again, the alliteration is at work but in the dog universe, hounds are a specific animal group, including Afghan, Basset and Blood hounds, Beagles, Borzois, etc., and to doglovers (the awards’ audience) the word hound even though it is not capitalized can be misleading. http://www.ckc.ca/en/Choosing-a-Dog/Choosing-a-Breed/Hounds

Better headline:

Three heroes welcomed into Purina Animal Hall of Fame

It’s simpler and shorter and doesn’t confuse the dog fan

Original lead

Toronto, ON – Pets have long been considered our most trusted companions and it’s easy to see why. They make our lives feel bigger, better and frequently seem to understand us more than we understand ourselves. This unique intuitive connection between humans and pets is often best exemplified by the heroic animal stories that continue to amaze the world. Today, Purina is thrilled to announce three new canine heroes who have been inducted into the Purina Animal Hall of Fame, each of whom has a remarkable tale about the day they saved their owners’ lives. (92 words)

 

Copy doctor/ of is and by edit

Toronto, ON – Pets, long been considered our most trusted companions, make our lives feel happier and better. They frequently understand us better than we understand ourselves. Heroic animal stories exemplify the unique intuitive connection between humans and pets, continually amazing the world. Today, Purina inducted three new canine heroes into the Purina Animal Hall of Fame, each having a remarkable tale about saving their owner’s life. (64 words)

Commentary

1. ‘easy to see why.’ If that’s so, then show it don’t say it.

2. ‘Seem to understand us.’ Seem just weakens it; either they do or don’t.

3. ‘By the heroic animal stories.’ Passive voice alarm bell rang loudly here.

4. ‘Continue to amaze.’ Continue is almost always unnecessary. Continually amazing the world is shorter and better.

5.‘Thrilled to announce.’ For shame, number one error in news releases—of course you are thrilled, that’s why there’s a news release. Wholly unnecessary. ‘Each of whom.’ Each is sufficient; of whom adds nothing.

If you would like me to do this or other copy projects for you, contact me at rotman-pr@rogers.com or @rotmanprwriter

 

 

Author: rotmanprwriter

PRWriter, Copy Doctor, Humber College PR and writing Prof

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