May 24, 2017

Colorful numbers

Startling statistics make compelling leads

Research shows … that nearly half of commuters text and drive … that one in three patients enters the hospital malnourished … and that 66% of women won’t kiss men with moustaches.

Startling statistics make compelling leads

By the numbers Surprise readers with startling statistics. Image by Stephen Coles

Statistics like these grab attention and make your point.

But you don’t have to tell PRSA’s Silver Anvil Award winners. They use statistics to sell their ideas:

From the sad …

AT&T uses startling stats in its release “Nearly Half of Commuters Admit to Texting While Driving”:

Nearly half of commuters self-reported texting while driving in a recent poll, and 43% of those who did called it a “habit.”

Commuters are texting and driving even more than teens — 49%, compared to 43%. And the problem has gotten worse. Six in 10 commuters say they never texted while driving three years ago.

So while efforts to raise awareness of the dangers of texting while driving are working — 98% of commuters surveyed said they know sending a text or email while driving isn’t safe — there’s clearly more work to be done to change behaviors.

… to the sick …

Alliance to Advance Patient Nutrition leads with the numbers in its release “Leading Healthcare Organizations Launch Interdisciplinary Partnership: The Alliance to Advance Patient Nutrition”:

Today, one in three patients enter the hospital malnourished and more become malnourished during their stay. With policy changes in the U.S. health care system driving an increased focus on high quality and affordable care, there is an urgent need to address the pervasive issue of hospital malnutrition and ensure that nutrition therapy is a critical component of patient care.

Five prestigious health care organizations today jointly announce the launch of a new interdisciplinary partnership, the Alliance to Advance Patient Nutrition. The Alliance’s mission is to improve patient outcomes through nutrition intervention in the hospital.

… to the sublime …

Cisco starts with compelling numbers in its blog post “The Internet of Everything is the New Economy”:

The Internet of Everything (IoE) is potentially the biggest business opportunity in the history of mankind. It will change the world with extraordinary and wide-ranging implications, affecting everyone on the planet. Research firm IDC predicts that this massive shift will generate nearly US$9 trillion in annual sales by 2020.

By comparison, the total annual sales of the San Francisco Bay Area’s 150 largest technology companies in 2012 were $677 billion. The total revenue of the consumer electronics industry in 2013 was about $1.1 trillion.

A study conducted by General Electric concluded that the Internet of Things (IoT) over the next 20 years could add as much as $15 trillion to the global gross domestic product (GDP), roughly “the size of today’s U.S. economy.” Of the $19 trillion in profits and cost savings projected over the next decade, Cisco® estimates that $14.4 trillion will be new private-sector profits, and $4.6 trillion will come from public-sector cost savings and new revenues.

In its study, General Electric positions the IoE trend “much like the industrial revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries, when mechanized manufacturing made mass-produced goods possible, and rural residents flooded into cities.” The study adds, “We are at the cusp of another wave of innovation that promises to change the way we do business and interact with the world of industrial machines.”

… to the ridiculous.

Gillette uses startling stats in its media alert “Gillette asks Houston couples to ‘Kiss & Tell’ in live national experiment and tell the world their preference — a smooth shaven or stubbled kiss”:

Research shows that people are kissing less than ever and that 66% of women have avoided kissing a guy because he had facial hair. With Valentine’s Day on the horizon and signs showing that the kiss may be on the decline, Gillette is asking couples across America to help determine if stubble could be the trouble.

How can you use startling statistics to grab attention and make your point?

  • Master the Anatomy of a News Release

    Tap current best practices, from lead to boilerplate

    Prose is architecture, Ernest Hemingway famously said. It’s not interior design.

    So: Are you building a compelling foundation for your media relations pieces? Or are you still using structural techniques you learned when you were 19?

    NOT Your Father's News Release - Ann Wylie's PR-writing Master Class in Chicago At NOT Your Father's PR Piece — a two-day PR-writing Master Class on May 18-19 in Chicago — you’ll learn to use a structure that’s been proven in the lab to grab readers’ attention, keep it for the long haul and leave a lasting impression.

    Specifically, you'll learn how to:

    • Decide between triangles, boxes or lists: Choose a structure that increases readership, engagement and sharing. (Hint: The structure you’re using now is probably doing the opposite.)
    • Steal a trick from The New York Times: Trade in your bloated fact packs for snappy synthesis leads.
    • Build a better benefits lead with our fill-in-the-blanks approach.
    • Avoid PR 101 leads: Still stuffing all those W’s and the H into the first paragraph? Still writing “XYZ Company today announces that …”? It’s time to move on to a more effective approach.
    • Beat the boilerplate blues: Here’s one way to stay off The Bad Pitch Blog.

    Learn more about the Master Class.

    Register for NOT Your Father's News Release - Ann Wylie's PR-writing workshop in Chicago


    Browse all upcoming Master Classes.

    Would you like to hold an in-house NOT Your Father's News Release workshop? Contact Ann directly.

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!


%d bloggers like this: