press release distribution

The Wicked Witch of Online Syndication is Dead: Why We’re No Longer Offering Syndicated Press Release Distribution

$6,100.00.

That’s what one big brand was spending per month on press release distribution, according to a study by marketing agency owner Tim Grice, posted on Moz in 2012.

That’s a huge number.

For the past year now, at Express Writers, we’ve offered syndicated online press release distribution to all of our customers, at rates well below what our former news partner charged on their own site. Our clients got a good deal—and we felt happy to offer it to them.

That is, until this October—when we stood back and looked at the actual benefit of online, syndicated news. I even got two experts on the line to help me dig up solid truths about this industry. (I’m indebted to Steve Rayson at BuzzSumo for pulling metrics and data for me, and Tim Grice at Branded3 for an updated quote.)

Our findings weren’t good, by any means.

That’s why we’re calling our findings the wicked witch of online press syndication and turning it into a Halloween post.

Here’s the (in the spirit of Halloween—cold, dead) truth: if you’re paying for syndicated news, you might just be wasting every single dollar you sink into that channel.

Don’t just be frightened by the witch: know the facts and make an informed decision the next time you choose to put your money into syndicated news (or not).

online press release distribution

The Story Behind the Study: What Inspired Me to Take a Deeper Look at Press Release Distribution

I’d noticed a pattern: in 2012, when we started offering distribution, I saw amazing, fast results in Google. For instance, one press release we did back then was about a stuffed toy. Their keyword, a solid, low competition long-tail, ranked #3 in Google in just days—the #3 result was their actual PRWeb release. Now that was value!

But I haven’t seen this happen since that day. And we’re talking out of dozens to hundreds of press releases that our team has written and distributed by now. On average, we distribute 6-10 press releases for clients in a month. We have so many clients that complain about the reports we send them. “This is all the data and results we get?” And the truth is: we didn’t really have an answer for them. The quality of the news results online was finicky. I’d see an online Fox station pick it up—and then it would be gone the next day, when I was ready to send the link to the client. Results weren’t permanent. And nothing showed in the first page of Google for their (great) long-tail news keywords.

The more I saw this happening, the more I realized I needed to research syndicated distribution. A bad feeling in my gut drove me to do it before we renewed our contract this year. And sure enough, what I found was pretty dire.

To make my research and findings official, I got in touch with my friend Steve Rayson, Director at BuzzSumo, for an exclusive study: and even got in touch personally with Tim Grice from Branded3.com, the author of the Moz piece, for some updated findings.

Let’s dive in to the findings.

Interview with Tim Grice: The Cold, Hard, Dead Truth of Syndicated Online Press Release Distribution

Here’s what Tim Grice had to say, when I sat down with him to discuss his Moz post and what he’d say about online press syndication currently as it stands in 2016.

Julia: You shared your findings on how budgets are being wasted with online press release syndication, back in 2012. Would you say it’s become an even bigger waste of budget in 2016? Or have you seen brands adapting, and investing less in online PR?

Tim: The Moz post is specifically referring to online PR syndication (PR Newswire, etc). SEO agencies and in-house teams were using them as a primary link building channel, firing out boring stories that got absolutely no pick up and the online links created were from low value directories.

In 2008, it worked really well to game Google’s rankings: but by 2012, it should have been on its way out. Not so much. Link building was becoming difficult and it was the easy go-to option for many agencies.

Here’s the thing: if anyone is using syndication for links today, they should be fired.

There is no value in press release syndication for SEO purposes. - @Tim_GriceClick To Tweet

Journalists are already inundated with companies offering up information for free, and there is no need to check a press wire.

Julia: Why is online PR a bad idea for a link building investment?

Tim: Online PR done right is not a bad idea, syndicating crap stories around the web for a handful of links on press wires is a terrible SEO strategy; no relevance, no authority, no trust. Creating genuinely insightful content or offering up unique data and selling it indirectly to journalists and bloggers is the right approach to online PR (done right, you can generate hundreds of high authority links from a single campaign).

Julia: Is there any good form of online syndication?

Tim: Not that I am aware of.

Anything designed to create quick, easy links is almost always a waste of time and money. -@Tim_GriceClick To Tweet

Julia: What is a much better way to invest revenue to boost your online marketing, instead of online PR?

Tim: Done right, online PR can return good ROI as well as high authority links, however the fact is that where you invest will depend purely on the gaps in your strategy.

From an SEO stand point, if you rank in the top five you’ve probably got enough links to be position one, and you should work on the technical side of it, CTR’s, mobile and great content.

Final word…

Syndication is never a good investment, and I would opt for any other tactic. - @Tim_GriceClick To Tweet

BuzzSumo: What Is The ROI Of Press Release Distribution (Syndication)?

To further dig into the reality of how ugly the press release syndicated world is, I asked my friend Steve Rayson over at BuzzSumo to get some exclusive findings. He was happy to accommodate, and here’s what we found. Ready?

What is the ROI of Online Press Release Distribution

To wrap up our findings…

On average, press releases on the top two syndication sites get a measly 24 shares–total. Fact: 24 shares don’t equate to people actually reading, yet alone someone clicking a link in a release. Over 50% of URLs shared on Twitter are never clicked (BuzzSumo).

Big ticket question:

Are shares inflated by syndicated press release distribution networks? 

This PR was the most shared, according to BuzzSumo, coming in with 149,000 shares on Facebook.

buzzsumo most shared press release

Using Moz’s Open Site Explorer, we found out that the press release with 149k shares has only 1 backlink with a Domain Authority well below quality (19 on a scale of 100).

moz screenshot 1

Investigating further, the backlink itself has 4 spam flags.

moz screenshot

As we end, if you’re still choosing to go with PR syndicated distribution, I ask you to ask yourself:

If the highest shared press release in existence has only one backlink, which is spammy, what real value are you getting out of your syndicated press release distributions?

Are we still doing press release writing? Yes!

We still offer press release writing from expert journalists! A PR in and of itself, as Grice said, holds much value (as long as you’re using something a little better quality than the syndicated online network.) As of October 31, we no longer offer distribution only. Get your written press release here.

Comments welcome! Tell us your thoughts below.

how to write a press release

How to Write a Press Release that Will Still Win in 2016

Today, it’s easy for marketers to write off the press release.

Some look at them as an antiquated holdout from times past, and the press release falls by the wayside for flashier forms of content, like social media, blogs, and infographics.

The truth?

Press releases are exactly as critical as it’s always been: those who don’t think they are, simply don’t know how to use them, or how to write press releases that will win.

To learn more about how you can dominate the power of the press release today for your brand, read on.

how to write press releases

Do Press Releases Really Still Matter?

I sat down this week with a PR expert, Shannon Gray, Managing Director of McKinney & Associates, a 25-year-old PR firm that specializes in social justice. McKinney & Associates even runs a Twitter Chat, #socialjusticechat at 2 PM Wednesdays. Shannon was a recent guest host in our Twitter chat.

Here’s what Shannon had to say about why PRs still matter:

Press releases are still vital to the communications industry.

Press releases are the standard and recognized format for sharing details about an event, person or topic.

Well-written press releases can answer who, what, where, when, why and how in a concise and easily digestible manner.

Press releases cut through the clutter of extraneous words of blog posts.

A press release can be mailed, emailed, faxed and posted online.

Until the last journalism major dies, press releases are the gold standard for getting information to media outlets.

Share-worthy shortened version of Shannon’s full quote:

press releases still matter

Shannon said it perfectly!

TL;DR: Press releases still work today, perhaps more than ever: worthwhile ones (well-written) can cut through the noise.

Unlike lighter forms of content like social media posts and blog articles, press releases are solely meant for publicity and going viral.

When you look at it like this, it’s shocking they’re so under-utilized.

While the primary purpose of a press release is to spread the news about a happening or development, very few marketers use them, believing, instead, that other forms of content will be more useful for spreading brand awareness.

Riddle me that.

While companies have been using press releases for more than 100 years, they’ve not changed hugely over that time. While the mission is a bit different (today’s press releases are less specifically news-focused and more informational in nature), the effect is still the same: news outlets find press releases and they write about them, furthering a brand’s message and creating a dynamic environment that’s productive for quality engagement.

Because of this, companies that have yet to abandon the press release are very wise.

There’s a lot to be gained there, but it takes some skill to do it well in today’s environment.

Let’s explore.

10 Best Practices: How To Write Press Releases That Win

Today, it’s not the company that writes the most press releases that wins the race, but the one who writes the highest-quality press release.

With that in mind, here are the ten best practices for how to write press releases that are truly attention-grabbing, rise above the noise, and represent your brand at a high level in today’s jam-packed online stratosphere.

1. Fill them with newsworthy content

FYI: A “sensationally” written PR (non-serious, just for hype and reaction) isn’t worth your time.

According to PRWeb, newsworthy content is the #1 thing that most press releases are lacking.

At Express Writers, when our clients order premium writing and distribution – the #1 issue we have is that clients try to get “sensationalism” through. We tell them no, every time.

You see, it’s the content that differentiates a press release from other materials, so it’s critical to get it right. The most popular content of press releases includes a new product or service release or events like business expansions and awards.

To ensure that you’re communicating your message clearly to your readers, install it firmly in the headline and avoid the temptation to use your press release as an advertising platform – it’s not.

Instead, keep your press releases focused specifically with newsworthy content and you’ll go far. In addition to informing readers, you’ll also succeed in engaging them and creating an environment in which your press releases are some of the most informative content out there.

2. Keep it objective

Objectivity is essential in press releases. Again, this is not a promotional platform – nor should I be treated like one.

For the best reception to your press release, keep it free of hyperbole and language that directly addresses your audience.

Instead, keep it objective and encyclopedic. In addition to coming off as more professional, this tone also helps get your message across without blurring it with sensational claims or sloppy construction.

3. Ensure all included information is relevant

Imagine this: a journalist finds your press release and wants to do a story about you. The story will reach a huge audience and has the potential to expand your following hugely, but the contact information you included in the press release is wrong, and the journalist can’t figure out how to reach you.

Now what?

If you wind up in this situation, you’re essentially throwing money down the drain. While it’s critical to include your contact information, it’s also essential to ensure that it’s current and up to date. A valid email or phone number is best.

4. Abide by length best practices

For best results for length when it comes to how to write press releases, it’s good to keep your press release between 300-800 words. This length is designed to offer your customers ample information without becoming so verbose as to be difficult to read.

Longer than this becomes difficult to pay attention to while shorter risks missing important points or pieces of information.

What’s more, be sure to format your press release much like you would any other piece of content – breaking up large portions of text into smaller chunks and ensuring that everything is free of spelling and grammar errors and mistakes.

5. Proofread everything

While press releases can quickly go viral, this will be a nightmare situation if yours is riddled with embarrassing spelling and grammar mistakes.

With this in mind, be sure that you proofread your entire press release before it goes to press. In addition to keeping you from reaching internet infamy through a preventable mistake, this will also help you present a more polished and professional face for your company.

6. Include your business’s name as the news source

To give people context and contribute to making it clear where your press release came from, be sure to include your business name as a news source in the headline of the media release. In addition to tying your name closely to the topic of the press release, this also helps streamline the announcement and make it more attention-grabbing for readers.

7. Quality over quantity, always

As goes with all forms of web content today, quality rules. While companies used to pump out press releases as fast as they could, today’s best practices dictate a much more careful approach. Instead of being hasty about your press releases, today’s best practices dictate that you take the time needed to make them as high-quality as possible. In addition to providing a better impression of you, your company, and your newsworthy event, a quality press release can also act as a marketing tool – showcasing your company’s high-level skills and commitment to value – even in the form of a press release.

8. Use reputable distribution sites

So you’ve written a beautiful, high-quality press release. Now what? Unless you’re using legitimate distribution sites, it’s likely that your press release will just die in its tracks.

Prevent this from happening by understanding which sites are reputable and which aren’t. While this is partially about maintaining a high standard of quality for your company, it’s also about adhering to best SEO practices as they relate to press releases.

You see – Google’s Panda update had a major effect on many press release sites. The reason for this was that, at the time, many press release sites were totally free. Because there was so little expense involved in creating a press release, and none in distributing it, many companies began to treat press releases as a black-hat tactic – filling their press releases with spammy backlinks and plenty of promotional content – and then distributing them on free press release sites. Google caught wind, and the press release sites were taken down, hard.

With this in mind, avoid making the same mistakes as your predecessors by choosing to distribute your content on only the most reputable press release sites. In addition to improving the SEO value of your press release, this is just a good practice that can help make your content more professional all around.

Wondering what a “reputable press release site” is?

PRWeb is at the top, holding the highest-rated distribution service online. With over 30,000 bloggers and 250,000 real news subscribers in their network, they hold serious klout for high-quality distribution.

9. Be careful about your links

Because the history of link building in press releases is spotty, it pays to be careful about how many you include, and where.

According to Sara Callahan, the owner of Carter West Public Relations, it’s wise only to include about 2-3 links for every 500 words in the press release.

Keep in mind that Google doesn’t pay a huge amount of attention to links in press releases and that including more won’t afford you more link juice. With this in mind, only include links where they will be legitimately useful for your readers and avoid stuffing them elsewhere.

10. Format your press releases according to best practices

Just like all other forms of web content, press releases must be formatted correctly. For best results, keep your headlines short (fewer than 22 characters) and ensure that you include at least two relevant keywords (preferably three) throughout the first paragraph, subhead, and headline.

Keep your press releases under 800 words and be sure to include your company logo somewhere in the document. Check out how we’ve done it in our recent press release on PRWeb.

If you can muster it, you should also consider including a short video for people who want a bit more to interact with.

TL;DR #2: STOP! You Need a Journalist, STAT

Now that you know all about the best practices for great press releases, let’s talk about who should write them.

Not everyone can pump out a press release and have it be any good. Instead, it’s essential to hire a journalist to write your press releases for you.

In addition to creating higher-quality content, a journalist will also be able to catch and amplify the minutia of a good press release.

Journalists know which wording will be most effective, how best to grab audience attention, and what’s required for good distribution, and how best to produce high levels of audience engagement. When it comes to writing press releases, the help of a good journalist is critical, and it will serve you well in the long run of your press releases as a whole.

Because a journalist has a good understanding of what a press release is and how they work, it’s a journalist who will be most qualified to write a great press release for your company.

How to Write a Press Release 101: PR In Action

When I launched my book, So You Think You Can Write?, we put out this press release to go along with it on PRWeb:

how to write a press release

In addition to being informative, the press release has a few key pieces that are meant to grab the reader’s attention.

Video: It all starts off with the video, in which I tell viewers a bit about what the book covers and why I wrote it. While the video is informative, we also worked hard to keep it light (you’ll enjoy the last few seconds, trust me.)

Body: The actual body of the press release is dedicated to informative content, direct quote, and details about why the book release is important. The copy isn’t studded with links and only includes a few that are relevant to the book – a link to buy it on Amazon, for example.

Bio: At the end of the press release, there’s a small section that tells readers about who Express Writers is and what we do. Our company name is also present in the header of the press releases, and there’s a link to our content shop at the footer.

It’s simple – right? Right, but it’s also effective.

In Defense of Press Releases

A great press release can go a long way, and this simple guide can help you learn how to write press releases that are effective.

Regardless of whether you’re announcing a new service or celebrating an award your company worked hard for, press releases are an ideal way to build notoriety and buzz around your online material.

Just remember, for best results don’t write them yourself: invest in a trained journalist.

Our team has trained journalists to write premium press releases. Check out our press release services today!

how to write a press release for a book

How To Write A Press Release For A Book

You’ve just written a book, how exciting! Now that you’ve finished it, you’re probably wondering how exactly to go about promoting it.

You’ve heard about press releases, but are they a thing of the past?

Great news, they aren’t! Since the SEO landscape has changed, quality is the name of the game for worthwhile press releases. You should have a solid journalist expert writing it, and a top notch news network. As long as you’re not distributing a PR for links only, you’re going to get a lot out of it.

Press releases are perfect for books whether they are paper copies or in ebook format, and they are perfect for spreading the word about your new release. Let’s talk more.

How to Write a Press Release for a Book: The Basics

Here’s a brief overview of how to write a press release for a book.

1. Always Use Captivating Headlines

Press releases are similar to other content in that it needs a captivating headline. Without a great headline, people are likely to pass your press release off as a boring, typical PR with nothing interesting. Most press releases aren’t boring, especially yours, but if the headline is boring everyone will assume the PR is, as well.

2. This Is A Chance to Provide Information

Press releases do help you promote you and your book, but you shouldn’t make it super promotional. Leave that to your promotional campaigns. Instead, make sure your press release provides people with information regarding you, your book, why you wrote it, and what you hope readers gain from it. This will help people know if it is something they will be interested in reading or not. We are all so busy with different life things that we need to know if a book is worthwhile to read. When writing your press release, make sure to write it in the third person because it is much more professional for readers and it helps you provide all necessary information that first or second person writing may forget.

3. Make Sure It Goes To The Right Places

Before sending out your press release, make sure you are sending it to the right places. First, you should publish it online. This is the new wave of the press release, making it more available for people to read and learn about your book or company. You can post a link to it on any social site, giving people directions on where to look. Second, you need to consider sending your press release to your local bookstore, local magazines and papers, and other companies that will benefit from your book. Research these particular companies and make sure you know the different places that would like to sell your book. You may even consider sending your press release to your local library. When you send out your press release, consider sending your book or at least a snippet from your book to make the local entities feel secure with publishing your press release.

4. Press Releases Can Be Optimized For Google

The neat thing about the new press release is that you can optimize it for Google by utilizing keywords. You can put the keywords throughout your press release and in your headline to gain Google’s eye, but always remember to follow SEO (search engine optimization) rules when writing anything for the web. Google is known for slapping bans on anyone participating in negative SEO. A great way to avoid falling into this common pitfall is to use your keywords sparingly. If you stuff your press release, or any content, with keywords, Google will ban your site, as well as keep people from reading, and will just look sloppy overall.

5. Make it Fun, Make It Shareable

You can still make writing a press release fun while still having enough information available in the PR. One of the best ways to craft content these days is to add sub-headers throughout to give people the ability to skim over your writing. This works perfectly for PRs and you can also add funny little quips or one-liners. This makes people decide you are a fun author and they would love to give your book a shot. You can even put in a few quotes regarding your book, but only quotes that are important. Just don’t fill your PR with tons of quotes and sayings.

6. Aim For Top Quality

The chances of your press release being read before going in a newspaper is pretty slim. Usually, editors will get a press release and do a quick glance over it before putting it in the next paper or magazine release. This makes it crucial for your PR to be full of quality information. Avoid typos and grammatical errors, fact check yourself constantly, and make it sound incredibly professional. This will be perfect if a publisher reads it or if an interested party gets ahold of the paper. You want to impress them as soon as they read that press release.

Now That You Know How to Write a Press Release for a Book…

Press releases are crucial to publishing anything whether it is an app, a change in your company, event, or book. These give people necessary information about your product while piquing their interest in your item. This is particularly handy for books, and you will find more people asking to purchase a copy once you have published an incredibly crafted press release!

Need a great team that writes and distributes, with a 100% success rate? Order today with us!

10 Benefits of Press Release Writing

10 Benefits of Press Release Writing For Your Business & Brand

Picture this:

You have tons of amazingly creative ideas and are starting (for real, finally) your new business. Or, you’re launching a book, or even a new service inside your existing company.

You might be able to pull a few strings to get an event going to celebrate your achievement, put out a blog or video about it.

Then, you start listing all the things you need, and press coverage comes up as your biggest challenge.

It’s easy to imagine the next part.

You have (almost) no money left and absolutely zero ties with bloggers and journalists.

So now what?

10 Benefits of Press Release Writing

10 Advantages That Press Release Writing Will Help You Unlock

You might be asking yourself:

How am I going to get press coverage? How could I share my news with the whole world without depleting what’s left of my marketing budget?

All the best answers point in the same direction: press release writing services represent the key to efficient and affordable self-promotion.

Press releases deliver exceptional results for virtually any business, regardless of its size, profit margins, profile and industry; which means that this type of content could also work like magic for you. This brings us to the next question: what exactly should you expect from world-class press release writing services? Here are the 10 main benefits of press releases that are constantly witnessed (and appreciated) by our clients.

1. Instant Exposure

As a small or medium business owner with limited resources, how could you spread the word about your company and products in the most effective manner, without breaking the bank to reach your target?

Because you know that content is king and distribution is queen, you want to bet everything on stellar copy that will sweep your potential buyers off their feet and make them daydream about your merchandise and talk about it in their sleep. In this moment, the question that you should ask yourself is this: how do you choose the right type of content and distribution services to achieve this specific goal? On second through, why choose when you can benefit from a complex content strategy based on an ideal combination of expert articles, blog posts, killer landing pages and press releases?

Each type of content plays an important part that you simply can’t afford to ignore. For instance, while landing pages help you introduce your brands and goods to the world and convert leads into customers, blog posts allow you to establish a more personal connection with your readers, by answering some of their most burning questions, offering advice, expressing your expert opinion and sharing your insight with your audience.

On the other hand, press releases let you build trust and authority on different fronts, by stimulating journalists and media outlets to cover your story, and also by giving your prospects a new reason to visit your store, land on your website, find out more about your most recent accomplishments and try, buy and spread the word about your new product or service.

2. Increased Sales Potential

Aside from bringing credibility and allowing you to stay in the public eye, press releases can also boost your profit margins, by highlighting the most remarkable key benefits and features of your products that position your merchandise on top of any other alternatives currently available on the market. You may feel the need to write and distribute press releases on different occasions, to announce a series of achievements, such as new technological developments, a product or service launch, a new partnership with a prominent company, a milestone that you have just reached or new acquisitions.

Each event that we’ve mentioned is newsworthy enough to command attention and put you and your business into the spotlight for a certain period of time. While the effectiveness of press releases can be difficult to measure, given that you can’t know for sure how many journalists have actually picked up your story and how many people have purchased your products as a result of this increased exposure, it’s safe to say that this type of content can be used to refine your message, get ample press coverage and explore an easier path to convince your potential buyers that what you’re selling it worthy of their attention, time and money.

3. The Chance to Boost the Effectiveness of Your Marketing Plan

Recent statistics unveiled by MarketingProfs indicate that 71% of all B2B marketers count on content marketing to generate new sales leads. This sounds amazing, but what if we told you that you could actually up this percentage by using every single tool in your content marketing toolbox to enhance your online visibility, become more popular and make more money? Press releases represent an exceptional, incredibly affordable marketing addition that you should add to your campaign. You simply cannot go wrong with these tools because they are designed to be controlled by their creators in terms of targeted audience and message.

4. The Opportunity to Brand Yourself as an Industry Expert

Press releases are a great way to build trust and credibility in your field of activity. An excellent PR campaign will offer you the chance to brand yourself as a high-authority artist/business owner and underline the unique attributes of your products. 

5. Increased Traffic to Your Website

According to the data shared by ereleases.com, 80 million people worldwide go online daily, looking for unique insight and exclusive stories. This impressive number reveals just how important it really is to use every trick in the book to push your feature to the top of your prospects’ newsfeed and boost your exposure.

Using press releases, you can do that, while also including one or two links to your blog or website, to guide your reader towards other platforms where you promote and sell your goods. As Lisa Buyer from Search Engine Watch points out, while Google has stopped companies from squeezing valuable link juice from press releases by implementing penalties for shady, manipulative link building strategies, a more traditional kind of PR work still represents the key to a flawless communication with journalists, influencers, investors and potential clients.

Without trying to game the system, you could still boost website traffic via press releases (and any other type of quality digital content for that matter), by simply optimizing the key elements of your copy, including keywords, headlines, videos, photos, hashtags and description.

6. Important SEO Benefits

Press releases published by several media outlets will offer you valuable backlinks to your website. Moreover, by optimizing your content, you could increase its visibility online and make your articles searchable on the Internet. Tags pointing to your topic and a set of relevant, industry and company-specific keywords are extremely important elements that you should add to your copy to optimize your press releases and unlock instant SEO benefits.

7. A New Opportunity to Reach Your Targeted Audience

Press release distribution services are industry-specific and ensure location targeting, a prominent advantage that increases your odds of promoting your message in front of an audience that is more likely to respond to your CTAs. This type of services based on geographical location can maximize your reach and help you get in touch with people who share your vision, mission and interests and would be more inclined to test, buy and recommend your products.

8. The Perfect Occasion to Distribute Your Content Across Different Channels

When you’re striving to make a name for yourself on an overcrowded market, it is vital to explore all available mediums to express yourself, build and maintain a connection with your public, receive financial support for your upcoming project and lure customers. Press releases ensure media coverage and can help you see your story in newspapers and magazines or hear about most recent accomplishments on the radio. All these channels can support your marketing efforts, turning you into a more powerful player in your sector.

9. A Solid Relationship with Journalists

Press releases enable you to create stronger ties with journalists who are looking for a good story to share with their readers. A well-written press release will enable you to capture the attention of several media outlets and create win-win situations with influencers in your industry who need to cover interesting facts to stay relevant and competitive on their niche.

10. A Cost-Effective Method to Attract Deep-Pocketed Investors

Press releases offer you the simplest and most affordable method to build your online reputation and increase your visibility on your market. Aside from making your goods seem more desirable in the eyes of your prospects and attracting more clients, press releases can help you capture the attention of influent investors who could become your future sponsors, lift your startup off the ground and fuel your ascension.

How Should You Choose a Press Release Distribution Service?

Now that you are familiar with the benefits of press release writing, you are probably wondering how you could select the most suitable distribution service for this type of content. In this case, our advice is to stick to the options that are fully compatible with your needs, goals and budget.

With several free and paid alternatives at your disposal, it is extremely important to filter your selection based on the SEO benefits and traffic/exposure opportunities offered by each candidate. Also, you may want to go in favor of a press release distribution service with a high level of credibility and authority. You can narrow down your search by simply checking some of the most relevant metrics in the SEO industry, including Moz Domain Authority and Google PageRank. We highly recommend PRWeb, the leader in online publicity and news distribution. Its editorial team can support your business growth goals by reviewing, optimizing and distributing press releases to some of the most influential bloggers, journalists, media outlets and search engines.

Aside from getting the most reputable and efficient network to distribute your content, you should also pay attention to up the quality of the message that you are planning on promoting.

If you want to count on an uninterrupted flow of first-hand content with real substance crafted to increase your odds of staying in the limelight, check out on our exceptional press release writing services and find out how they could help you and your brand steal the show in any industry.

writing a great press release

15 Tips for Writing a Great Press Release

Awesome content is involved in writing a great press release: from the newsy headline to the text body that gets read, quoted and shared by interested news audiences. All too often, businesses and brands have neglected these useful tools.

In The Power of the New Press Release, we recently discussed what exactly a press release is, what an amazing PR includes and why you should invest in well written releases. This blog delves a little deeper with the current rules involved in today’s successful press releases, and how to come out on top if your goal is writing a great press release.

6 PR Writing Do’s for 2014

According to PR News Channel, “for businesses looking for a different way to utilize the Internet and create an online profile, a press release can be a great way to spread news about your company, business, product or service.” Sounds great, right? The problem is that all too often people go about writing a great press release incorrectly. Somehow they miss the Do’s and do the Don’ts.

  1. Do write for people, not search engines. We’ve seen a lot of articles talk about writing PRs for search engines, but this tactic changed in 2014. You see, in 2014 the world of SEO evolved. The focus is now on quality content written for people, not search engine crawlers or robots. If you write with your audience in mind, crafting a piece of copy people will want to read and share, search engine indexing will come naturally without any fuss.
  2. Do optimize for keywords without optimizing. Wait, what? I know, it sounds redundant. But it works! It’s fine to have a keyword or two (even a keyword phrase) in mind. Imbed it in your copy by inserting it where it naturally (and logically) belongs. Never, ever force a keyword or keyword phrase. If it doesn’t read smoothly and logically, it will hurt versus help.
  3. Do link to relevant web spots. You’ve no doubt heard of backlinking. Linking to relevant web spots (blogs, articles and content) by using words that accurately describe your company’s product or service will cause search engines to associate those words with your website.
  4. Do link to social media. Use your press release as a window to social media. Link it to your Facebook and LinkedIn pages. Ask your audience to follow you and like your posts, including your press release. Don’t be afraid to ask them to share it as well.
  5. Do include quotes. Writing a great press release involves personalization. It’s important to give the reader something memorable that they can connect to. Quotes are perfect for achieving this, and they even build relevancy and credibility.
  6. Do embed a little extra value. PR News Channel recommends imbedding a complementary YouTube video in a press release, but they note that not everyone can (or will) apply this tip. Instead of pigeonholing a video, we think you should instead add a little extra value that fits your brand, such as a free gift or limited time offer.

Extra, Extra! 3 More Tips

Copyblogger made an awesome statement about the modern press release: “Stop writing press releases, and start writing news stories.” In other words, when you sit down to brainstorm or write a press release, a key to success is thinking of it as a news story.

Ever notice how news stories go viral? Why is that? News stories cover a story, use a hook or two, and cover an angle. They make people care. Likewise, your brand’s press releases should hook the reader and cover the story from an angle that makes them care. Here’s how you do this:

  1. Do tell a story. Everyone loves a good story. Tackle your press releases from the perspective of a storyteller. Understand why the reader should care and stay focused on the why throughout the copy.
  2. Do present value. Telling a story is not in and of itself good enough. Readers want value. They want a reason to delve into your copy. Use your PR to present value by pointing them to your blog, requesting information or encouraging a purchase. In other words, slip in a call to action with attached value.
  3. Do tart a discussion. People love social media. They love discussions. They love to get involved. Use a press release to encourage all of this. Link to your social media, encourage comments and jump right into the discussion.

Persuasive Tactics Are Key

Copyblogger published a copywriting 101 blog about the structure of persuasive copy. The accepted structure of persuasive copy is one of the best structures to utilize when writing a great press release for online (and even offline) publication. The epic thing about modern PRs is that they are published online “as is.” Therefore, the more care you put into structure and style, the better the resulting PR will be since standard publishing formats don’t apply. Modern PRs are savvy tools limited only by your creativity. As you write, consider the following:

  1. Do be specific. Avoid vagueness at all costs. Vague information serves no valuable purpose. It wastes the reader’s time and detracts from your reputation and credibility. Your assertions, facts and statistics should be ultra-specific. Avoid general statements or unsupported information.
  2. Do demonstrate credibility. Press releases are seen as excellent opportunities to build credibility, especially when treated like a news story or bulletin. Your can assert your credibility through statistics, studies, expert reference and appropriate testimonials.
  3. Do assert authority. Writing a great press release involves asserting your authority on the subject. You accomplish this by being specific and demonstrating your credibility. If you aren’t already a recognized authority on the topic, you had better do your research. Ensure every aspect of your press release is based in provable and clearly supported fact.
  4. Do make an offer. Explicitly presenting your product or service to your audience is vital. You need to be bold and firm. Address and relieve the reader’s risk of acceptance. Stand by what you say. Explain or illustrate why the reader needs to act on your offer.
  5. Do cover 5 basic questions of copy. One of the first things covered is ensuring your PR covers the 5 basic questions of all copy: who, what, where, when and why. If you fail to provide the answers to just one of these questions in your press release, you risk losing your audience—or worse, damaging your credibility and reputation.
  6. Do sum it up. As you conclude your press release, it’s important to sum up the key points. According to Copyblogger, “returning full circle to your original promise” is vital. It’s just as important to also demonstrate how you’ve fulfilled your original promise.

Bonus Tips for Writing a Great Press Release

Creating a great PR takes time and effort. A lot of big businesses (and even mid-sized to smaller businesses and brands) enlist the help of an experienced copywriting agency or copywriter when creating a PR. The writing behind amazing PRs is just as much a trade skill as it is an art. If you’re up for the challenge of creating your own PR, then we want to leave you with a few more awesome tips.

How do you feel about homework? Well, if you hated homework in school, we promise we’re handing you something you’ll enjoy. If you’ve found this blog informative and entertaining, you’re sure to love what else we have to offer. We’ve taken the time to prep 16 more helpful tips for writing a great press release in the following blogs:

  • 5 Ways in Press Release Writing to Get Your PR More Publicity: a brief discussion designed to help you increase and gain the maximum amount of publicity out of every press release you publish. This is a must read, especially if you have trouble reaching a large audience or want to expand your reach.
  • 6 Tactics for Getting More from Your Press Release Campaigns: even the most well intentioned PR campaign can fall short of expectations. Whether you’re campaign is handled by a content marketing agency or your personal expertise, learning how to squeeze every drop of awesome from your campaigns is important. Our tactics are designed to help you do just this.
  • Press Releases: 5 Best Ways to Optimize for Google and SEO: although SEO changed in 2014, it’s still important to ensure you know how to best optimize your PR for Google. In this blog we cover 5 of the best ways to optimize while linking you to extra material that backs up our strategies while also giving you some extra reading chalked full of educational information.

What are you waiting for? It’s time to utilize the sexy savviness that is the modern press release!

 

 

press release writing

5 Ways in Press Release Writing to Get Your PR More Publicity

Here’s a riddle for you: what’s short, concise, compelling and newsworthy and can boost the online visibility and profitability of your business by spreading the word about your most recent accomplishments?

You know the answer to this one: it’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s a press release that travels fast to satisfy the universal hunger for premium content that is tormenting both bloggers and journalists every single step of the way. Press releases are extremely valuable content pieces designed to support your online marketing strategies and help you make a name for yourself.

How to Write Press Releases Like a Pro

Writing press releases is not art and it’s not science. It’s a combination of both elements. In order to create and distribute truly effective press releases, you have to understand how the mind of your targeted audience functions. Empathy is an important piece of the puzzle enabling you to perfect your press release writing skills and resonate with your public and also with your tastemakers, who amplify your message and make sure it reaches an even broader audience. Most people rely on a trial-and-error process to assess the quality and the effectiveness of their web writing. But you are not most people. You can do better than this.

According to Raven tips on press release writing, in order to convince journalists to take your masterpiece into consideration and include it in their article, you have to think like a journalist. It actually makes sense. Can you image how difficult it must be to identify truly amazing newsworthy facts when you are bombarded with tons of written junk and mambo jumbo on a daily basis, when you’re really craving for stellar content and accurate, trustworthy sources of inspiration? In order to perfect your press release writing, you must start by identifying and avoiding these 3 extremely common and annoying mistakes that could turn you into an average Joe instead of helping you enjoy the fair share of fortune and fame that great content creators are entitled to.

 Press Release Writing Pitfalls That You Should Avoid at All Costs

a)      Overkill Just Killed Your Press Release. Oops. Make sure you don’t start your quotes with the overrated, extremely irritating fragment indicating that you are really excited to let your clients know that you have succeeded in something. Of course you’re excited! You have all the reasons in the world to be thrilled: you’ve launched a new product, expanded your company or have recently invested time, money and energy in a new partnership. Nobody says that it’s illegal to show a bit of enthusiasm, but don’t overdo it. Keep the fact, but ditch the hyperbole. Downplay the “we” factor in your presentation; after all, your products should be into the spotlight, not your merits, your moneymaking efforts or your excitement.

b)      Fabricated Facts Never Tricked Anyone into Buying Your Story. Don’t invent facts and don’t include statements that you cannot back with solid evidence.

c)       Giving Up Is Not an Option: Write Killer Press Releases or Die Trying. Most importantly, don’t lose your hope. Keep your press release writing simple and straight to the point. Emphasize the novelty that is relevant and newsworthy and accentuate its impact on your targeted audience.

5 Ways to Bring and Keep Your Press Releases in the Public Eye While Boosting Their Effectiveness

Press release writing is not as difficult as you may be inclined to think. As a matter of fact, there are at least 5 foolproof methods to bring your press releases into the attention of a broader audience and maximize their influence fast and with minimal effort.

1. Create Better Stories. Don’t write press releases just to generate inbound links. It won’t work. Google is already one step ahead of you on this one. By cataloging links in press releases as unnatural, it basically forces content creators to use the rel nofollow attribute. So instead of treating your press releases like plain SEO tools, give them a little bit of credit. They are food for thought consumed on a daily basis by millions of journalists worldwide who are constantly looking for genuine, attention-grabbing stories. Think first, optimize second. Make sure your story sounds too good to be true when it actually is. Self-indulgent sales pitches are so yesterday. They no longer prove their utility, so unless you want to bore a journalist to death, don’t invest your time and money in them. Create stellar stories that can be quoted, which are based on 100% verifiable facts.

2. Keep It Simple. Always write in the 3rd person, present facts from the readers’ perspective and keep it short and simple. A good press release shouldn’t count more than 500 words to prove a point. You are not writing a novel and you don’t get paid by the word, so don’t hesitate to be brief. Get to the point fast and don’t use tons of adjectives to highlight your authority or your amazing capabilities, experience and accomplishments.

3. Rely on First-Class Distribution Strategies. If content is a powerful king, then proper distribution is its influent queen. Make sure you email your press releases to your targeted audience. According to a Copyblogger post on how to use the modern press release, a human touch is what makes the difference between great press releases that are being shared and quoted and mediocre ones that sink into oblivion since the very beginning. Pick up the phone and make sure your targeted bloggers and journalists actually managed to read your story. Distribute your press releases via a good wire service, but don’t forget to explore marketing opportunities brought to you by social media platforms. Sharing your press releases on social networking websites can only work to your advantage, allowing you to raise the online visibility of your brand.

4. Optimize with Maximum Care. Optimize your press releases, but always remember that Google is breathing down your neck. You wouldn’t want to rely on shady optimization tactics that could turn out to be counterproductive. Use relevant keywords in your headlines and body copy, but don’t overdo it. Keyword stuffing is one of the capital sins listed in the SEO Decalogue.

5. Opt for an Ideal Format. How you write web content is almost as important as what you write. This rule applies also when it comes to crafting result-oriented press releases. The standard format comprises a few key elements that you should not omit, including headline, dateline, introductory paragraph, body, boilerplate, source and media contact information. According to iReach, subheads are optional, but they can help you put your ideas in order and organize your material more effectively.

Now you know it. Great format, optimized, stellar content, a good story with a twist, world class distribution strategy and a refined, studied simplicity represent the main factors that could raise the visibility and the effectiveness of your content pieces and help you improve your press release writing skills in no time.

 

 

press release optimization

Press Releases: 5 Best Ways to Optimize for Google and SEO

Do you have what it takes to create and distribute stellar content in the form of press releases without terminating your friendship with Google? It’s no secret that search engines work around the clock to ensure a flawless web experience for all categories of web users. This means that Google is constantly plotting against content creators who rely on less orthodox search engine optimization to bring their websites on page 1 in search engine results, boost their online visibility and fill their own pockets the easy way.

Why Is Google Constantly Blocking Your Way to SEO Success?

Unfortunately, the never-ending string of sneaky changes sometimes manages to puzzle even the most experienced webmasters and stop them from getting a good night’s sleep. What seems acceptable today becomes intolerable tomorrow. Google, can you please make up your mind and surprise us with a little bit of consistency? The bad news is that it is not in our power to control Google, its plentitude of algorithm updates and its endless list of surprises, which is probably longer than the one that Santa prepares for us on every single year. The good news is that even though we cannot anticipate or correct Google’s independent spirit, we can adapt to these new challenges and breathe new life into our old content marketing strategy.

The Good, the Bad and the Dangerous of Content Distribution via Press Releases

You may be aware of the fact that Google has a real problem with bad link building strategies. And by “bad” we mean deceptive and designed to manipulate search engine results to the webmaster’s advantage. According to Search Engine Watch, Google may also be bothered by press releases that are created and distributed to help a certain website occupy a better position in search engines without actually doing readers any favors.

The same source mentions the fact that Google seems determined to squeeze every single drop of SEO juice from press releases; this appears to be a diabolic master plan that was rolled out quite some time ago. The most pressing problem that has recently come to our attention is this: Google is actually cataloging links in press releases as “unnatural”. As a result, it is compelling webmasters to nofollow them. So what does this major change mean for companies and organizations that depend on properly optimized press releases to highlight their mission, vision and purpose in business?

Search Engine Watch reveals that in 2006, press releases were a real gold mine for SEO experts who knew how to give wings to an inspired marketing message and optimize quality content for search engines at the same time. 8 years later, press releases are no longer considered the Holy Grail of search engine optimization. On the contrary, sloppiness and your refusal to comply with Google’s rules and guidelines while writing press releases can get you in serious trouble and expose you to considerable penalties. Don’t say you haven’t been warned: according to Search Engine Land, press releases won’t help your rankings. This statement is supported by Matt Cutts, who revealed that press releases cannot and will not improve your current position in Google.

So what’s the best method to keep risks at bay and still profit from the good that still lies in every single well-written press release? People who want to rely on press releases to spread the word about their companies by publishing their content via article websites or paid wire services such as Marketwire, Business Wire or PR Newswire are advised to nofollow their links, especially if they represent optimized anchor texts.

In this particular context, the rel nofollow attribute seems to be a life preservative that is your one and only hope when you are just about to sink in an ocean of gray hat SEO tactics and uncertainties. When in doubt, just use rel nofollow to stay in Google’s good graces. Rules may be created to be broken, but this is certainly not the case. The nofollow tactic seems a simple, easy to implement preventive measure that could enable many content creators to avoid penalties. But older press releases that have already been distributed and republished by countless sources are the real concern in this case.

Rel Nofollow: A Life Preserver That We Should Hold On to When It Comes to Optimizing Press Releases

In this particular context, one question is on everybody’s lips: will the ghost of already archived press releases that are all over the Internet haunt its creators and distributors? How much time will paid wire services need to clean up this mess and implement new sets of rules to avoid mishaps that could make Google really angry? At this point, nobody can provide an accurate answer to these 2 pressing questions that are on everybody’s mind.

What we do know for a fact is that nothing can stand in the way of clients who want to share their newsworthy facts with the whole world; not even Google’s mood swings. Businesses depend on press releases to boost their visibility, promote lines of products or new services, diversify their clientele and improve brand awareness. From this point of view, press releases are undeniably powerful allies and nothing can change this. There’s only one alteration that should be factored in at this point: links should be handled with gloves.

The rel nofollow alternative represents a viable option at hand for people who don’t want to let Google stop them from creating and distributing first-class press releases that have what it takes to inform and educate a broad audience. In other words, content creators shouldn’t exclude links from their strategy. On the contrary, they should include one or two to help readers land on a company’s blog or website and stimulate them to take action. However, the new changes made public by Google, related to link building strategies in press releases may bring us back to an old-school form of premium PR work, which is not necessarily a step back. After all, PR Newswire reminds us that we should write for living, breathing people, not for machines.

After all, press releases are the bread and butter of most journalists and respectable publications like The New York Times, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, for instance. According to Search Engine Watch, excellent press release wire services, like PRWeb for instance, feed the content hunger of more than 8,000 websites and give millions of people something to talk about. This is only one reason why press releases are truly irreplaceable.

Breaking News: Press Releases are So Much More Than Mere SEO Tools

Truth be told, we can’t imagine how gigantic, prestigious newsrooms like Reuters and AP would manage to function without healthy feeds of quality press releases in their system. The problem is that some content creators craft and distribute content just to generate inbound links, which is precisely the thing that drives Google crazy.

To overcome this obstacle, writers, marketers and SEO experts should refresh their memory and remember that press releases are not mere SEO tools used to push a certain page on a privileged position in Google. Press releases should be perceived as high-value content pieces designed to generate authentic reads and clicks and enhance the online visibility of a brand in a natural manner.

Engaging, informative content is the key to success in what press releases are concerned. First-hand newsworthy facts are mandatory, not optional. The one or two links accompanied by the rel nofollow attribute are just the icing on your cake. If all this fuss created around links has made you feel confused, just take a closer look at the 5 foolproof ways to optimize your press releases without exposing yourself to any penalties coming from search engines.

5 Risk-Free Ways to Get the Gold Medal While Optimizing Your Press Releases for Google and SEO

1. Keep the Essential Links to Drive Traffic. The nofollow alternative sounds like music to our ears. Let’s be serious: you cannot ban the usage of links in your press releases. This radical decision would basically defy the purpose of this type of content pieces. How would users be able to spot the company behind the amazing technological breakthrough, the new affordable line of products or the innovative concept that you’re describing with so much enthusiasm in your press release?

2. Convert Press Releases into Useful Inroads to Killer Content Posted on a Blog or a Website. Raise the curiosity of your readers by creating short, concise, compelling press releases that represent the bridge between readers and a company’s blog or website.

3. Come Up with an Intriguing Story Idea. When it comes to stories that could be easily assimilated by the media, new is good. But new and memorable is always better. Try to present a certain fact from a different perspective. Thinking outside the box always pays off. This doesn’t mean that you should feel encouraged to lie or exaggerate facts listed in your press release. It just means that you have craft a compelling story around the news that you are getting ready to serve on a silver platter. Journalists have a nose for interesting facts that could capture the attention of their readers and boost their engagement. This is precisely why they are more likely to pay attention to press releases that come up with a genuine story with a twist, while avoiding dull content pieces that are mostly based on fabricated facts and nonsense.

4. Perfect Your Distribution Strategies. If you already count on an amazing wire service, like PRWeb for instance, to distribute your press releases, this doesn’t mean that the job is done and you can just cross your arms and wait for miracles to happen. You may not like the news that you’re about to hear, but here it goes: in order to connect with a large segment of readers/prospects, you have to play on multiple fields.

If you rely on a wire service, this means that you are already one step ahead of your main competitors. Keep up the good work by expanding your content distribution strategy. Post your press releases on some of the most popular social media platforms, where they could be read, filtered, assimilated, liked and shared by your fans and followers. Don’t neglect the enormous power of social networking websites. They are extremely valuable channels that enable you to interact with your targeted audience, inform and educate your readers, become a leader in your field of activity and build and maintain solid relationships in the long run.

5. Rely on Multimedia Content to Broaden Your Horizons. In an era in which the Gangnam Style clip managed to go viral and raise almost 2 billion views on YouTube, it becomes more than obvious that press releases based solely on text fragments are so yesterday. Step up your content creating strategy a bit by including multimedia elements in your informative piece. Videos, infographics and images correlated with well-balanced, short paragraphs increase pageviews and keep your readers on your side for the longest period of time (yes, even the ones with a very short attention span).

Create and embed stunning video content to convince journalists and bloggers that what you have to say is actually important, relevant and newsworthy. Remember that the Internet is highly polluted by junk and overly optimized content with very little substance. This is precisely why you have to rely on 5-start multimedia elements to prove the worthiness of your press releases and let the readers know that your content pieces could become the nucleus of high-quality, reader-oriented articles and blog posts. Furthermore, inforgraphics are hotter than ever. Turning your press release into an infographic will only support your content distribution efforts. Many newsrooms are crazy in love with this type of content, so they won’t hesitate to use it and link back to its original source.

These 5 suggestions reflect the fact that press releases are still alive and well. They may no longer be able to help you generate inbound links, create and implement more or less shady link building strategies, boost the link juice of your current optimization campaign, but this doesn’t mean that press releases are useless artifacts. On the contrary, optimized keywords, great attention-grabbing headlines, proper social media strategies, hashtags and stellar multimedia content can and will reward your legitimate SEO efforts and bring your message in front of a large audience who is ready and eager to take notes. 

 

 

press release campaign

6 Tactics For Getting More From Your Press Release Campaigns

Regardless of people saying press releases are going the way of the dinosaur, we all know a great press release is important in bringing more people to your company. Press releases will get the public to come see the new aquarium addition, go to a book signing, listen to a newly released album, and most importantly, visit your website. This blog will help you find some great tactics for making a larger impact and get more from your PR campaigns.

First, Let’s Discuss The Importance of a Press Release. Like we said, a lot of experts seem to think press releases are going to become unnecessary, but we disagree. Nature shows us that extinction of the dinosaurs did not affect the alligator or crocodile; they are still alive and well. So too are press releases. A powerful press release can tell people information about your new company or site, or tell people when you are holding an event, whether it is in-person, or an online get-together. They can also tell you why a company or product is important. Press releases are still vital for the success of your business!

Update What You Believe When Releasing a Press Release

Because of the newer forms of technology, press releases have amazing opportunities to be done in a variety of ways. You don’t have to stick to antiquated methods and, in fact, those methods probably will not generate the amount of leads you want.

Here are a few ideas of how to get your press release out, the new way:

  • Tweet, Tweet. With the invention of Twitter, you can release your PR in a form of microblog. Give a brief, yet enticing, one-liner to include with a link to your formal press release. This helps grab people’s attention, and once you have their attention, they will read your PR. You can even build up to the press release for a few days, making sure people know it is on its way.
  • Facebook. This is another great way to release your new PR. You can give a bit more detail on Facebook as opposed to Twitter, making it easier to hit a few highlights of your press release. Do not give too much away though! Make people feel the need to read.
  • Publish Your Press Release as an Article. Copyblogger says that great press releases are great articles. Instead of just providing a link to a PDF, consider actually releasing it as an article on your site. This format can actually help engage more people and keep their attention longer.
  • Pinterest! Really? Yes! Making your press release into an infographic is a great way to get more shares. This can be shared on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and other social media sites and is perfect for Pinterest and Tumblr. Make it pin-worthy and you will see your press release shared more than a simple PDF.

Now, Let’s Talk About How to Get More from a Press Release. Here, we will talk about a few ways in which to garner more response from your PR campaign and how to make it available to wider audiences.

1. Have You Considered Mobile?

If not, you really need to reconsider your current marketing techniques, because there is a whopping 143 million Americans who have smartphones. That’s a lot of people using mobile phones for more than just calls. When writing up your press release, think about how you can optimize it for mobile readers. Will the typeface be too small on their screen or will the general layout be too bulky? Is it user-friendly? These are questions you have to consider when going mobile for any of your content. When it comes to a press release, it is imperative because you want people to read all of the release, not just some.

Your wordy press release is not the best option for mobile. Considering a few of these tactics can help you as you setup your mobile format.

  • Infographics Get Your Information Across Quicker. When it comes to a mobile platform, an infographic is one of the best ways to get your information out there and make it accessible for mobile users. Look over your press release and figure out which points matter the most to your company and put them on your infographic. Those points are what mobile users are looking for, but many may want to see more information. Provide a link to your press release within the infographic, so people know where to look.
  • Shorter Sentences Are Best. When writing content, you always want to make sure you provide enough information regarding your points, but when it comes to a mobile platform that is not the best method. Those lengthy paragraphs will lose mobile readers quickly. Shorter sentences can get your point across without causing too much information to overload the mobile reader.
  • Get Your Message Across Powerfully, but Quickly. Mobile copy can get your information out there in a quick and powerful way. This format makes you think about what the most important elements are, and when someone reads something interesting or powerful, they are more apt to get off their phones and head to the web copy version to get more information.
  • Make it Quotable. People love quotes. With this in mind, make your copy quotable. This goes for regular copy as well as mobile copy. If you make it quotable, people will remember your press release and what it was about. They are also likely to share your services with others.

2. Make it Portable while Keeping its Substance

We know you want to keep the substance and meat of your press release, and we are here to say it is possible to keep that meat while making it easier to manage. By “easier to manage” we mean, make it something that can be broken down into one paragraph or a sentence. People like to read the basic information and then “unpack it; ” they are more likely to share something that can be broken down easily. Sure, when we are offered an amazing looking and smelling dessert, we want to eat it all at once, but bite size pieces are much easier (and safer!). The same goes with information. If your information is absolutely amazing your readers will want to cram it all into their brains, but you do not want to overwhelm them. Give them the ability to read it piece by piece. Make your press release a savory one and it will stay in the readers mind a lot longer, and has a better chance of reminding the reader that your company is great.

3. Boring Press Releases are a Thing of the Past

Those plain and simple, information only press releases are definitely something of the past. You want people to know about your product and services, but if it is generic and boring, people will avoid your company. Make your press releases something fun to read! What about being professional? We believe you can be professional and have fun at the same time, and here are some useful press release writing tips to help you with that.

How can you have fun while being professional? You can:

  • Insert little quips or one-liners.
  • Add jokes (people love humor).
  • Quote favorite authors or personalities, especially ones that are well known and trendy.
  • Implement pop culture references. Pop culture is a big way to get a younger crowd interested in your services.

All of these ways can make your press release fun, without sacrificing professionalism. It should also be noted that the old ideas of professionalism are fading away, and consumers find laidback, relatable companies to be more “professional.” Interesting, no? Remember this as you make your next press release, as well as for most of your other content!

4. Be a Journalist and Report

People take very well to journalistic styles of writing. Making something sounds like it could be published on the Huffington Post is a great way to get them to read your press release and choose your company over your competitors. Just take a look at how popular photojournalism is within wedding photography. The same goes for content, whether on your site or in your press release. Journalism is more laidback, yet still significantly professional. It gets the information out to the masses while being easier and quicker to read than something that sounds like it could be found in a scientific journal.

If you need an example of how to write in a journalistic way, just check out the Huffington Post, or even go to Buzzfeed to see how journalism is being tweaked for Millennials. You can approach your next press release as an investigative report instead of the generic, “This is what we are doing and why.” For example, frame it a way such as, “How can our product help you?” or “Why is our product the most important product you will ever own?” People will feel like they are getting more out of an investigative press release and you can use it to provide all the same type of information you would have released in a generic format. It is a great way to spice things up and stand out from the crowd, too!

5. Headlines and Sub-Headlines are the Best Way to Make an Impact

When reading long press releases, people no longer want to read every single word. They would rather read the headlines to find the information they are looking for specifically. When you break your press release down into bite-sized pieces, add headlines and sub-headlines to each piece making it stand out. People will skim over things that do not grasp their attention and read what follows the headline that stands out. Keep this in mind when writing your press release: people skim everything. Make your key points easy to spot, and you will get more out of your press release than if you had written it without making your points bold and numbered. Honestly, you are probably reading this sentence fully because it is bolded, aren’t you?

6. Use Quality Content!

We say this a lot because it is absolutely the truest and most important aspect for any web copy, especially press releases. You may think you can slack off on the press release by not spending much on it or simply ignoring it until the last minute, but you truly cannot do this! Your press release reflects you and your company. If it is sloppy, readers and potential clients will think your business is sloppy. Now if your press release is high quality, informative, fun, and professional, readers will turn from potential clients to customers in a snap because they believe your company is a high quality, informative, fun, and professional company now. Just like with your web content, press releases absolutely need to be quality. Stop slacking off and write that amazing press release, ASAP!

It is Time for You to Write that Press Release and Wow Consumers!

What we are doing now is another important element to your press releases; we are ending our post while giving a call to action. A call to action attracts customers and gives people a pathway in which to travel when it comes time for them to purchase your product. It brings everything you have just told them into a paragraph giving them ideas on how to take the next step with your service to improve their company or themselves.

By following the 6 tactics above, as well as this call to action, you will be able to formulate new and wonderful press releases that are sure to wow your customers. You will find that you generate new leads and may even see your press release getting shared by customers via their social media sites. Press releases are still vital to business operation in 2014, and we do not believe they will be going away anytime soon. By updating your approach to press releases and adapting them to the technology of the era, you will target a wider audience and find amazing success this year!

 

how to write a press release for an event

How to Write a Press Release for an Event

If you want your event to shine and be well-attended by your target audience, you want to create a buzz by sending out a press release.

But, with so many people on information overload via social media, texts, and emails, how do you generate excitement? What do you know, if you don’t know how to write a press release that will garner interest?

What elements should your press release include or exclude?

How much information is enough?

How much is too little?

Should you send out a traditional press release, or would an online-only press release suffice?

Including the following elements should give you a good outline of how to write a press release for an event, while generating a buzz that will tell your reader that yours is not an event to be missed! (View more press release writing tips and examples in another of our blogs.)

The 6 Essential Points of How to Write A Press Release for An Event

Here’s a lowdown of what you need to create in order to correctly know how to write a press release. Remember: for a press release to get noticed today, quality wins! Keep reading and we’ll break it all down.

1. Headline

Grab the reader’s attention with a strong, catchy headline with keywords that people will most likely use in their search. This is your opener and what will make your reader want to read on. Include the name of the event and either the location or theme of the event. You won’t want to give too many details up front. If you’re writing an online press release for an event, know that Google will index 60 characters and Yahoo, 120 characters. Use Title Case for your headline. (See what PRWeb says about press release headlines.)

2. Summary

Next, write a summary of one to four sentences. It may be a good idea to write this section last, after you have written the rest of the press release. It will be easier to summarize after you have the rest of your points down.

3. Dateline & lead paragraph

These elements range from 25 to 30 words and answer the “who, what, why, when, where and how” questions of your event. Keep the text simple and stick to the critical elements of the information. The format is: City, State, (name of service or publisher of the press release, e.g. GOOGLE), Month, Day, Year – details.

4. Body

The body of the press release is where you really get to tell the story of the event. This portion of the release will usually have two or three paragraphs. Use the first paragraph to elaborate on the details of the event. Talk about the target audience, any guests who will be featured and their background, and the benefits of attending. If the venue is historic or ties in with your event in some way or the date coincides with history or a special anniversary with your company, mention this. This part of the press release can be a bit more descriptive than previous sections.

5. A boilerplate statement to follow the body

The boilerplate is a chunk of text that can be used repeatedly, just as an “About” page is used on a website. This is where the details about your company are listed including; the services you provide, and perhaps names the key executives as well. It can contain your mission and vision for your company. This is the public persona you wish to project for your company.

6. Finally, the press release should include contact information

This is the company name, telephone number, address (if you wish, it is not necessary in a press release), the company’s website address, the name of the key person to contact about the release, and an email address.

Those are the nuts and bolts of writing a press release for an event.

Now, let’s look at a basic dos and don’ts list for writing a press release for an event, so you can make your PR a cut above the rest.

DO’s:

  • Start out strong and succinct. You need to grab your reader within the first few words.
  • Use active voice. Vibrant verbs create interesting and fresh copy and draw the reader in.
  • Identify a point person where readers can direct their inquiries.
  • Use a professional tone without jargon in your writing. Using slang, hype, and too many exclamation points may come across as more of a sales pitch, turning people off your event.
  • Tell an interesting story with your press release. Remember you want people to be drawn to your event. People are busy. They need to know how they will benefit by attending.
  • Send the press release out in a timely fashion. Sent too early, people won’t remember it; sent too late, they may already be committed to something else. Two to three weeks in advance is a good timeline.
  • Use a “hook.” Tying your event into trends, news, and social issues can add excitement and urgency to a press release for an event. The reader feels they are getting more value by attending than staying away.
  • Keep your press release within 300-800 words.
  • Spell check!

DON’Ts

  • Use clichés and common phrases that sound like a sales pitch. Fresh copy keeps your reader reading to the end.
  • Give away everything. If you want the reader to go to your website for more information, give them the desire to do so. Leave them with questions about the company, and they’ll go to the website.
  • Address your readers directly by “you.”
  • Refer to your company as “we” or “I.”
  • Create emphasis by using multiple exclamation points or ALL CAPS. These techniques lessen the credibility of your event.
  • Use bullet points or long lists. Search engines may reject your press release identifying it as an attempt to overload your document with SEO, and bulleted lists belong in an article, not a press release.
  • Include an email address if you’re writing an online-only release. The email could be picked up by spam bots and flood your email.
  • Use more than one hyperlink per every 100 words; otherwise, a search engine may view it as spam.
  • Use dashes, asterisks, and other odd symbols to create breaks between paragraphs. Just a simple line space will suffice.
  • Use HTML. You want your press release for an event to be distributed over a wide range of networks, some of which may not support HTML.

Follow these guidelines to know how to write a press release, and your press release will shine just as much as your event!

Order high-quality press release writing and distribution from our expert team. We have journalists who write our clients PRs, and we partner with the leading service on the web for distribution.

press release

The Power of the New Press Release

Critics have been questioning the future of press releases for years. And sometimes it seems like the naysayers could have a point. With constantly changing Google algorithms, the immediacy of microblogging, and the effortless accessibility of information on the Internet, it can be easy to be swept away in the sea of doom and gloom. But have no fear. Doom and gloom, have no place in press release discussions. No, instead of “RIP press releases,” we say, “Long live this straightforward and news-worthy content!” (Sorry, not the catchiest chant, but stick with us, ok?).

In fact, we believe with solid, well-written copy and an effective distribution service, this “What, When, Who, Where, How and Why”-centric article format could be one of the most powerful and far-reaching components in your company’s communication strategy.

 

Wait, What is a Press Release?

 

But we do need to pause and make sure we are taking a modern, savvy approach to this very worthy tool in our copy toolbox. In a world of social media and blogging, it only makes sense that press releases, a stalwart in the media world since the early 1900s, must also continue to evolve with the latest communication channels. It’s not time to leave the mighty press release behind. Rather, it’s time to figure out how to incorporate each press release seamlessly into the rest of your content campaign.

According to Entreprenuer.com, a press release is a “public relations announcement issued to the news media and other targeted publications for the purpose of letting the public know of company developments.”

And we agree, although we’d like to expand the definition a bit. In addition to “news media and other targeted publications,” we’d like to add that modern press releases should also be written with influential social media users and bloggers in mind. That’s right – today’s press release should have more in common with a postable article than a stuffy, formatted disclosure of facts.

So here’s our definition of a modern press release:

The key background facts of newsworthy business events written in an easily readable manner that appeals to media pros, social media mavericks and interested customers.

 

The New What, When, Who, Where, How and Why of Press Releases

 

As we alluded to above, a press release addresses the six basic elements of any major event: What, When, Who, Where, How and Why. But what exactly do we mean when we say “What, When, Who, Where, How and Why” – and how can you adapt it for both on and offline success?

 

What — Press Release Content

You may be sick of hearing this from us, but we will never EVER stop saying it. Quality content is crucial. Crucial to your readership. Crucial to how people interact with your content. Which finally, is crucial to your all-important search engine results. (If we could figure out another way to drive home the crucial-ness, we totally would. Because it is…well, you know).

Press release content is no different. Quality content is king in this realm, too. This is because the audience (more on that in a second) expects a specific format and impeccable grammar.

Traditionally, in a well-organized press release, the key details of the event were addressed in order of importance. That’s it. No embellishment. No sales-y pitches. Just the facts in a succinct, well-researched manner.

Today, many of the same press release standards are in place. The easily accessible facts are a must. The absence of sales-speak is just as important. The format – mandatory. But in the fast-paced Internet world, where an online magazine or blog may grab your press release in full, a few updates are in order. Dry content is out. Engaging readability is in. Here are just a couple of our expert press release tips.

  • Attention-Grabbing Headline: Internet readers’ attention spans are notoriously short. So gaining their attention in a crowded, information-overload setting is the first step to making sure your information is distributed successfully. Ok, quick! Which article would you click on? 

Computer Store Announces New Location

-or-

Thousands Await Life-Changing Technology to Move In Just Down the Street

You’re right, both convey the same information, but one has you ready for more, while the other is equivalent to a copy desert – dry and without hope. So garner your press release — and thus your store opening — interest with click-enticing headlines.

  • Quirky Quotes: Give your press release a unique voice by getting the principles in on the story. Don’t simply quote the facts, “The store will break ground in May 2014.” Quote reactions to the facts. If the storeowner says something like, “The store will break new ground with technology people have only seen in sci-fi movies.” That, my friends, is the quote you want.

 

And remember, even if your article is not picked up in full, these facts provide a much-needed backbone for potential news articles, blogs and social media updates. We’ll show you how to effectively bring social media into the mix in a moment. But first…

 

When — What kind of event calls for a Press Release?

First and foremost, a press release must be news worthy. Don’t waste people’s precious time and patience with bland announcements. Reserve the power of the press release for true, industry-rocking events, milestones, or projects. The same computer company who used a press release to spread the word on their groundbreaking store can also use a press release to communicate:

  • Carrying or Developing an Innovative Product
  • Hosting Grand-Opening Event
  • Hiring a World-Renowned Computer Guru as their CEO
  • Offering a New 24-Hour Home Service

 

Avoid tactics like scheduling weekly releases. In the absence of true news, you’ll likely have to resort to unfortunate hyperbole — “We’re the ONLY ones with mouse pads” — about mundane things. Also, don’t use a press release to spread bad news. Much like an attention-grabbing headline, the subject matter must be intoxicating enough to stop people in their tracks.

To keep your content strategy on track, before you order a press release, ask yourself a few questions:

  • What news am I breaking to my audiences?
  • Why should they care about this event?
  • Is this information “rare, customized, and scintillating”? (Thanks to Forbes for adding those awesome adjectives to the mix)

 

If an answer to any of these questions doesn’t readily come to mind, you may need to hold off on an official release and downgrade to a tweet or blog post instead.

 

Who — The Audience

Traditional: Press releases were (and are) written for reporters and editors in hopes that they would, in turn, write a news story about your big event, milestone or project. This is why press releases must be to the point (300-500 words), easily scannable and in the approved PR format.

In the wake of shrinking media departments, press releases are actually needed more than ever. A well-executed press release offers time-crunched journalists all the information they need for your business’ story on a silver platter. Just remember, shoddy writing will land your release in the trash bin as fast as a boring headline will be ignored by a scrolling Internet surfer. In a crowded reporter’s inbox, one typo could be the death of THAT press release, at least.

Modern: Reporters still produce news stories, but they aren’t the only people or entities who wield the public ear. A well-crafted press release, with its fact-rich introduction, meaty quote and stat-filled copy, and company-highlighting boilerplate, may hit a blogger, influential tweeter or niche Google+ circle at just the right time. Our increasingly connected world (Google, social media, blogs) only helps press releases gain greater reach. They may not be used verbatim (likely won’t) but your name and your story can still get out there.

With an Internet audience in mind, it may be tempting to pad your copy with ill-fitting keywords. But don’t. Not only are you ALWAYS supposed to be writing for people, but also Google has become wise to link building schemes. This isn’t cause for sadness. Instead, let it encourage you to create quality content to get those facts out there! The International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) offers a couple general rules to keeping both Google and your readers happy.

1. Keep your links down to about every 100 words or so.

2. Include only one anchor-text link in the product’s name

 

Where — Venues to Spread the Word

Social media is conversational and emotional. How does that fit with a press release and its no-nonsense format? Using strategic planning, here’s how the Internet and press releases can make a fabulous pair.

  • Post to a Specific Audience: If you do want to post your release in its entirety to a social media platform, you may want to consider communicating it to a specialized audience. We’d recommend trying this tactic with a carefully curated Google+ circle or community. Google+ is less about catching up with high-school buddies than it is about connecting with people who are into the same things that you are into. So if you have a circle of Mac lovers, why not share your company’s press release on its newest Mac help service. You’re likely to find a captive audience eager to interact with your niche content. You can try the same technique with Facebook or LinkedIn Groups and Twitter hashtags. Plus, by sharing with a dedicated audience first, you’ll build their loyalty. You’re effectively saying, “We really appreciate you and thought you should know this before anyone else.”
  • Get the Conversation Going: While PRWeb Social Media Community Officer Stacey Acevero agrees wholeheartedly that companies should post press releases to social media, she cautions with a few guidelines. She suggests starting a conversation by: 

○     Asking a question
○     Cracking a joke
○     Presenting a thought-provoking observation
○     Sharing a surprising stat
○     Giving a great tip

She argues that just posting the headline will seem spammy and not get your message anywhere. We tend to agree. Social media is supposed to be social first and foremost.

  • Up the Engagement: Yes, press release format is crucial, but with the Internet and social media audience to consider, the addition of multimedia content can do wonders for getting people to your release. Consider adding an image or video to your release. This is the type of content social media users love to interact with, so why not give it to them?

 

How — How to Distribute Beyond Your Networks

Ok, how can you reach even more folks than your own social media networking will allow? It’s hard to compete with the number of media eyeballs you can get in front of by sending your press release to a distribution service like PR Newswire.

The Power of Distribution:
With a rich, 60-year history, PR Newswire has amassed a huge, dynamic media audience. Have a story with international ramifications? They have nearly 50,000 distribution points abroad, plus translation services. And with 10,000 U.S. news outlets, they have your domestic stories more than covered as well.

Targeted Audience:
Using PR Newswire’s network is not like shooting in the dark. They are able to specialize the audience from communicating with an entire industry down to contacting an individual reporter.

Social Edge:
PR Newswire also realizes the power a tweet or Facebook post can have. If that is where your audience hangs out, that is where they will market your release. They will also distribute tweets to industry relevant feeds.

If you can find a company with an ample supply of professional press release writers on deck, access to distribution services AND quality social media management packages, then you, my friend, have hit the content campaign jackpot.

 

Why — What’s the Point?

Press releases are still a key way to make sure your news is distributed in a timely, attention-grabbing manner. New technology has not decreased the relevancy of the press release. It’s just given you more ways to get the word out. From clever tweets to visually engaging content, social media and blogging can work in your press release’s favor.