Press Release Recap: 3 Major News Trends from July and August

PR Newswire distributed nearly 35,000 press releases in the U.S. and Canada in July and August – so we understand if you had trouble keeping up, even if you’re already registered for PR Newswire for Journalists. To help out, our team monitored the headlines for some of the major industries and made note of any trends they spotted.

As summer wound down, brands shared press releases related to back-to-school season to help students, parents, and teachers start off another year on the right foot. And with the end of one season came previews and launches for everything fall-related (hello again, pumpkin spice). Lastly, across the country (and the world), brands chipped in to help communities recover from devastating weather events, from wildfires to floods and beyond.

Below, we dig into some of the major news trends over the past couple of months.

🏆 Popular Releases

Pop-Tarts Croc-Tarts feature first-ever Jibbitz charms to eat atop your toaster pastry.

Source: PRNewsfoto/Kellogg Company

Regardless of larger trends, some releases just draw a huge audience because they are that big or interesting of a story. These were a few of the most-read releases of July and August:

  • Medical Breakthrough: New research found that substituting two tablespoons of maple syrup for refined sugars helps reduce cardiometabolic risk factors. With a headline that was bound to attract attention and a video to break down the findings, this release took the cake (er, syrup?).
  • Big Energy News: Releases from American Battery Technology Company have been popular ones on the wire and this one announcing the presence of lithium at depths greater than 1,400 feet in Nevada was a standout with readers.
  • A Sweet Collab: The launch of limited-edition Pop-Tarts Croc-Tarts was a must-read in August – in fact, it was the most-read release of that entire month.
  • Hot Housing Stats: The annual® Hottest ZIP Codes Report underlined the growing appeal of commutable homes and neighborhoods as return-to-office plans continue to take shape across the country.
  • Members-Only Store: Everyone wants an exclusive deal and internet provider Nomad tapped into that desire with the launch of its Prime Store, which provides early access to new products and even free internet for life for members.

Below, we dig deeper into the larger trends spotted on the wire.

🏫 Back-to-School

For many of us, the end of summer means the return to school. In 2021, there were 74 million children and adults enrolled in school across the U.S. And as they were preparing to head back to the classroom (whether in person or virtually), brands flooded the wire with their education-focused headlines.

Pretty Dope Society's 10 Year Old Designer, Mariah Benson holding the Mermaid Squad Backpack.

Source: PRNewsfoto/Pretty Dope Society

Throughout July and August, PR Newswire distributed more than 200 releases related to the back-to-school season. The announcements covered a range of topics, from school supply donations to new AI-based tools for students and teachers, school safety initiatives, scholarship announcements, the latest back-to-school wardrobes, and much more.

Here are a few that stood out:

  • United Airlines pledged $1.25 million to DonorsChoose.Org to fund aviation, and science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) projects across classrooms in the airline’s seven Hub markets.
  • Old Navy announced it would provide a full refund if its uniform styles don’t stand up to the wear and tear of a school year.
  • Norton shared its back-to-school tech tips for parents, including securing devices and talking to their children about online safety.
  • Pretty Dope Society’s back-to-school collection includes a range of vibrant, fun, and melanin-filled backpacks, along with matching school supplies, to celebrate representation and empower Black youth.
  • Chipotle invited its fans to nominate their favorite K-12 educators for a chance to have them win a share of $100,000 in school supplies.

Find more: Back-to-school news was covered in our news trend roundups for the education industry as well as those for the consumer, people/culture, and fashion/beauty verticals.

⛈️ Severe Weather

From record-breaking temperatures across the country to severe flooding in the Northeast, devastating wildfires in Maui, Hawaii, and Hurricane Idalia making landfall in the Southeast, it seems no part of the country was untouched by severe and extreme weather events this summer.

Goya Foods delivery truck

Source: PRNewsfoto/Goya Foods, Inc.

“It’s been a year of abnormalities and streaks, so it’s just a testament to just how strange this year has been,” Ryan Worley, meteorologist for the National Weather Service office in Phoenix, told CNN.

During July and August, PR Newswire distributed nearly 140 press releases related to natural disasters, including these ones:

  • The Salvation Army responded to the brutal heat wave by distributing essential supplies like water, cooling packs, and sun protection.
  • As wildfire season ramped up, Mercury Insurance launched a video series to help California residents protect their properties against wildfires. The company also shared preparation tips as Hurricane Hilary headed toward California in August.
  • The Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau shared regular, important updates for state residents and tourists in the wake of the wildfires in Maui.
  • CVS Health helped those impacted by Hurricane Idalia by stocking more emergency items in stores, allowing emergency refills of prescriptions, and more.
  • Goya Foods sent food and funds to help cover the costs of housing and shelter for families displaced in Maui and food to the people on the West Coast.

Find more: Read all the latest natural disaster-related announcements, from safety tips to relief efforts and beyond.

🍂 Fall Previews and Launches

While the temperatures may not reflect it, we are edging nearer to the start of fall (Sept. 23) and brands used the past two months to get a head start on their seasonal promotions and product launches. This explosion in season-related press releases makes sense given that fall is the favorite season of 41% of U.S. adults.

7-Eleven Pumpkin Spice Latte

Source: PRNewsfoto/7-Eleven, Inc.

From pumpkin spice (and apple)-flavored everything to fall travel deals, back-to-school sales, and campaigns to begin football season, companies’ announcements regarding the new season varied by topic.

Get cozy and catch up with these seasonal releases:

  • Angry Orchard made the argument for apple over pumpkin as the best fall flavor and debuted its apple variety pack of hard cider.
  • Bath & Body Works launched 35+ fall fragrances, including Praline Delight, Farmhouse Pumpkin & Spice, and Cozy Vanilla Bourbon.
  • Fall means football season is back and The Honey Baked Ham Company offered ideas to switch up the tailgate and watch party menus.
  • The Fall Travel Forecast from Expedia found that lower prices and increased availability make the “shoulder season” a popular one to get away.
  • 7-Eleven rolled out its Pumpkin Spice Latte earlier than ever and paired it with a limited-edition Apple Cider Donut.

Find more: Catch up with more fall-related announcements in our blogs covering the July and August news trends in the consumer, food and beverage, and sports industries.

More News Trends

Want to dive deeper into the news trends for the industry you cover? Our team has compiled the trends and top releases across 16 industries for July and August. Find them all on PR Newswire’s Resource Center.

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Rocky Parker is the Manager of Audience and Journalist Engagement at Cision PR Newswire. She's been with the company since 2010 and has worked with journalists and bloggers as well as PR and comms professionals. Outside of work, she can be found trying a new recipe, binging a new show, or cuddling with her pitbull, Hudson.

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