People, stop and think about the news. It’s what makes a news release work.

This news release just made me throw up my hands and wonder for the thousandth time, how is it that people pay newswires good money to distribute bad news releases? I didn’t rewrite this one, except in a few places because simply pointing out what was substandard was criticism enough. #humberpr #copy #livingwaterresort #collingwood

Original headline

Cranberry begins exciting new phase with rebrand to Living Stone Resort


Cranberry Resort renamed Living Stone Resort, begins exciting new phase

Branding and rebranding are industry jargon that the general public does not really understand. In this instance, saying that something familiar like Cranberry is changing its name is more relevant and interesting.

zntqQB3j_400x400Original lead

COLLINGWOOD, ON, June 6, 2018 /CNW/ – Living Water Resorts officially launched the rebrand of Cranberry Golf Resort to Living Stone Golf Resort on the afternoon of May 17.

Among the most inept leads in recent memory, with unnecessary repeats of the company name. The release is dated June 6, and the launch apparently occurred May 17. While it’s good corporate PR to hold and event with ‘an esteemed group of attendees,’ (see next paragraph) by what standard is this news, worthy of distributing three weeks later over the newswire? And to say ‘on the afternoon of May 17’ is so irrelevant, so much after the fact; it does not add to or change the news at all. In fact, professionally speaking, it’s so amateurish that it’s downright amusing.

Second paragraph

An esteemed group of attendees were present, including the Honourable Collingwood Mayor Sandra Cooper, local MP’s, media and other special guests. The event was marked with cocktails, speeches, a ribbon-cutting ceremony, and an exterior sign unveiling.

If there’s any news here, it’s the unveiling of the new brand, which I guess, though it’s hard to tell, is the ‘exterior sign unveiling.’ Supposedly an ‘esteemed group of attendees’ is there but the only one mentioned is the local mayor. Also, it’s local MPs, no apostrophe and are they Members of Parliament, MPs, or Members of the Provincial Parliament, MPPs. Best to name names, if it was in fact true. Including the media is silly, as they are not guests; they are there to cover the story; this is almost never mentioned in news stories. If there ever were a list of three clichés never to mention in a news story, then saying the event was marked with ‘cocktails, speeches, a ribbon-cutting ceremony’ wins the most banal series award.

Explanatory paragraph

The rebrand signifies the important role Living Stone Resort plays in the Living Water family, while remaining its own unique and distinct resort experience. It marks an exciting time for Living Water Resorts, as they strengthen their brand and cement their status as both Collingwood’s largest employer and premier tourist destination.

PR people who make such elemental grammatical mistakes besmirch the profession and ought to apologize. Corporations are an ‘it,’ people are a ‘they.’ ‘It marks an exciting time for Living Water Resorts, as they strengthen their brand’ is correctly rendered as ‘as it strengthens its brand.’ In the paragraph’s first sentence, reassuringly, the release states ‘while remaining its own unique and distinct resort experience,’ although unique would make ‘distinct’ unnecessary. Well that’s it for Amateur Night! See you next time—The PR Writer.


Author: rotmanprwriter

PRWriter, Copy Doctor, Humber College PR and writing Prof

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