Press releases are actually a great way to get the word out about your business or site. The title of the press release is very important and should be well-optimized with the search phrases you want to target. The body of the release should be content rich and cover everything you want to anounce. Don't write a short release the more content you have in the release the more chance you have to pull some traffic from it. There are various ways to send it out. I like prweb but there are other that cost less and can be effictive.
I put up a post relating to press releases a while back.
Although the key focus was on editing press releases for use as content on your site, the information might be of some use for those seeking to write them in the first instance. Then again, it might not.
Write it in a pyramid style so the user can cut the release off at the end of any paragraph and it still makes sense. This way they can use just a few lines or the whole thing. Make it as easy as possible for them to use. Write it in an "editorial" style, meaning don't make it sound like a promotion or ad. Make it sound like an actual article. Editors are usually under time pressure so a small item that quickly fits somewhere into their site or publication will have a better chance of getting used if requires minimal editing, etc. Good luck.
I agree. When I used to be an editor, a snippet that was not too heavily laden with sales grease was a blessing. And a style where longer fragments would also make sense would be good. Yes, I'd chop or rearrange or remove bias, but starting with readable half-objective prose saved an awful lot of effort and made it more likely you'd end up in the "This Week's News" section.