Press releases are an integral component of every successful content marketing strategy. They have SEO value and lead generation potential all in one. Regularly scheduled press releases generate buzz and press around your brand. They are a slam dunk for sure.
It’s a common misconception that press releases must follow a life-altering event. They merely announce newsworthy content regardless of how small. Here are some events that would necessitate the need for a press release:
- New website design
- Company event
- Seasonal sale
- Holiday discount
- Industry recognition
- New product launch
- Webinar or video series
- Blog launch
- New partnership
When you distribute a press release, it is syndicated to some of the most popular news sites and can reach top positions in the search engines. Potential leads or bloggers seeking a story will view your company as thriving and active when they see a number of press releases.
Press releases are effective for landing potential leads. Leads can easily turn into customers once they search for your company name in Google and see the news circling around your brand.
Before you pick up your pen, take note of these formatting tips:
- Your press release should be at least 400 words but not more than 600. I recommend staying closer to the 400 word mark since internet users have short attention spans.
- Include 2-3 targeted keywords throughout the release.
- Add a compelling main title and a sub-heading directly beneath – Mention your name or brand name in the title along with a keyword.
- The first paragraph should discuss who, what, when, where, why and how as it relates to the press release topic.
- Include two quotes from someone in the company or a customer.
- Use AP Stylebook for proper grammar and spelling guidelines. A poor press release will be rejected by a PR distribution site.
- Refrain from sales lingo. A press release should read like an unbiased news story. List benefits but avoid making it appear like an advertisement.
- Speak in the 3rd person, not the 1st.
Example: XYZ company is forging ahead with a new product line. – RIGHT
Example: My XYZ company is forging ahead with a new product line – WRONG
Tip: Write as if you are a reporter broadcasting news about your company.
The conclusion of the press release (boilerplate) should include company information and a link to the website. Follow with your name, phone number, address and end with ### or the word END to denote the end of the press release.
Distribute your press release to a press release distribution outlet. Though many require payment, they also include the benefit of massive exposure. The well-known sites have a broader reach in the news world and they target specific industries while providing more SEO benefits.
The most popular paid PR distribution sites are:
If you are looking for a low-budget option, use free PR sites. They do not syndicate like the large media outlets, but they will create a page for your release on their sites. It is recommended to submit your release to a few free sites even if you submit to paid sites.
Here are two of the top free PR sites:
Stay tuned to future articles where we will dissect the body of a press release in more detail. If you have any questions about press releases, please comment below.