You will never have as much control over information and the eventual shape it will have in a publication as when you write a news release, so write news releases with care. Before you even begin a news release, ask yourself honestly, “Is there any news in this story?” The definition of news can vary greatly, even from day to day, but generally you have to ask yourself if what you are about to write has any importance to the intended audience. If you decide that you have news to relate, do not leave any questions unanswered in your release. A good news release should answer the questions: Who? What? Where? When? Why? and How?
As with any public statement, the interests of your chapter and GEAPS as a whole are the primary concern. All news releases should first be cleared with your chapter’s board of directors and the GEAPS International office. A chapter or an individual should never take a position on an issue on behalf of the GEAPS organization without authorization from the GEAPS International office.
Establishing and maintaining good relations with members of the grain industry trade press in your area is important. Often it simply means adding their name and address to your mailing list. This keeps them informed as to your chapter’s activities, particularly speakers and/or programs that would be of interest to the GEAPS membership and the industry as a whole. Even though members of the trade press are eligible for associate membership in GEAPS, they may have corporate policies that prohibit their membership in this or any organization. However, keeping their names on your mailing list would be a gesture of goodwill that could result in exposure for both your chapter and GEAPS.