We all have interests, no matter how diverse. Any one of us could like watching a favorite program or film, reading a book or graphic novel, following a celebrity or sports star or even playing a computer game. So the chances of encountering a press release about them are something we more than likely have been exposed to throughout our lives.
With the rise of the internet and various social media platforms that have followed, finding out the latest news via a press release is more commonplace than ever, especially as they can be written or recorded, either as a voiceover or footage. Further press releases can be instantly released, thanks to the internet, as and when the need arises.
This article looks at what a press release is before discussing six easy ways to get one. So if you’re looking to make the next big announcement, read on.
What is a Press Release?
A press release is not an advert. Yes, it may be presenting new information, but not about products or services, unless its purpose has specifically been stated in this regard. Examples include a product launch, book release, or merger. Press releases used in this way, without highlighting their purpose, are often frowned upon and avoided as they are considered nothing more than a means of free advertising.
A press release is typically a newsworthy announcement made to garner the attention of a target market. However the more attention received, the better it often is for the entity it is about.
With 89% of Americans receiving their news online, the internet has drastically changed the way people receive information from the once static way of reading daily newspapers to the more dynamic and current means of social media and the internet. Therefore a press release is now more concerned with connecting with target audiences in a purposeful way to attract and retain their interest.
Why is a Press Release used?
Ultimately a press release is used for communication. To communicate a message, whether it be recorded or written. The five W’s: Who, What, Where, When, And Why should be answered with the target audience in mind.
The subject of the press release is the ‘who’ the first W refers to. This doesn’t necessarily have to be a person but can be an animal, organization, product, or another entity that is the focal point.
This refers to the activity the person or entity has done or is planning to do, which is the reason for the press release. By informing people of the second W, the ‘what’, it may encourage word of mouth and more interest.
This is the location of the activity by the person or entity the press release is about. People who follow or support them may want to know this so they can be there in person.
This concerns the time and date of when the activity is to occur. By letting people know they may either be able to attend or watch it on social media.
The purpose of the activity is the crux of the press release and justifies why it is required. It is what will provide the reasoning for completing the activity and could possibly acquire interest outside of the target audience if the message is conveyed in a meaningful manner.
Six easy ways to get a Press Release
An effective press release can make you the next success story. With over two decades of experience, the experts at https://www.ereleases.com/ believe that there are many methods needed to produce an effective press release. Using real editors instead of salespeople is one example from them that can make a positive difference going forward. In consideration of this, we’ll now discuss six easy ways for you to get a press release.
1. Interesting and Newsworthy Information
Ensure you have one interesting point in your story behind your press release that will draw people into what is being written about you. Furthermore, it not only has to be interesting it has to also be newsworthy. Of course, what is of interest will be affected by your target audience and the reasons behind your press release. For instance, if you are using the press release to specifically launch a product, aside from information about the product itself, you may want to entice interest by focusing on how this product could benefit your target market. Accordingly, if you’re releasing a new line of motorbikes, it would make no sense to target an audience of car enthusiasts.
Another aspect you may want to include is what is occurring currently in the market your press release is about. This could provide a back story, placing your story into context. It could provide the reason your activity is needed, a purpose, which is what your press release could use as a focal point. In effect, this backstory provides the ‘why’. However, ensure that your press release focuses on one main point so any back story is just that and doesn’t take center stage.
2. Writing and Editing
Just because you can write does not necessarily make you a great writer. Nor does spotting a spelling mistake make you a great editor. Both points are no more true when you’re writing a press release.
Your press release must be error-free and read well. Repetition and complex sentences may also deter people from reading to the end of your release or possibly prevent them from seeing the press release in a positive light. Errors will more than likely provoke the same reaction. Therefore your writing needs to be clear and concise.
Perhaps of equal importance is that it should grab interest and retain it throughout the release. Therefore having a catchy title with sentences that convey their point, without the need for purple prose, can be just as important as an error-free piece.
To give the press release an edge or fresh perspective, it may even be worth considering working with a colleague and brainstorming ideas or writing it together.
3. Know your Audience
If you know your audience or target market, then you can tailor your press release to specifically target them. Furthermore, because you know who you’re attempting to reach you will know how to, whether it be via Facebook, Instagram, or TikTok. It is a waste of resources to opt for a social media platform that your intended audience rarely uses because you want your press release to gain maximum exposure.
Aiming for the right audience also encourages them forwarding on your message without the need for you to do anything else. Therefore knowing your audience, the social media platforms they use and their general interests will enable you to accurately reach them.
4. Know your Journalists
Just as important as the last point, knowing your journalists are an integral part of the press release process. You have all the other pieces in place so now it’s time to send out your press release. Prior to doing so, you may need to conduct research to determine which journalists you want to send your press release to. It would be a fruitless exercise sending a press release about the launch of a new beauty product to a journalist specializing in financial news, for instance. It would also be just as ineffective if you are sending the press release to a journalist who specializes in a relevant field, only for them to focus on a specific niche that caters to a specific audience. For example, sending a press release about a new meat product to a journalist that specializes in vegetarian cooking would be a waste of time and unprofessional.
Perhaps another point worth raising in this section concerning journalists is once you have the right journalist for your press release, you should supply them with all the salient information they require. This could consist of your contact details, in the event they require further information from you, and including any social media platforms, you’re active on. It could also include quotes they could use in addition to any further information you deem interesting or newsworthy. However, do not include too many and avoid stating anything that you would be expected to say, such as, “We are pleased with the product”. In addition, avoid the use of anything that does not add much to the press release like common cliches.
5. Social Media Coordination
More than likely you will have several different social media platforms at your disposal to reach your audience. These can include the usual suspects like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, YouTube, and SnapChat, depending on your audience. You can help improve this further by doing a few other things. One could be to add multimedia to your press releases, like videos or images. They gain more attention than mere text alone.
When your press release is launched you can use these different platforms to roll it out. By focusing on different aspects of your press release on each platform, your audience sees a fresh new aspect of your press release as opposed to the same one. For instance, although footage may be useful for all sites, it can be edited for sites that suit a few seconds of footage as opposed to a few minutes. Altering photos with different frames may suit Instagram more than YouTube and provide a fresh point of view to uploading one version of your press release.
With social media, you could consider cross-promotion. Social media cross-promotion is sharing your content, in this case, your press release, with a partner who will then promote it for you on their respective platforms. You naturally have to do the same for them, therefore it is important to select a partner that is relevant to your brand and is not in competition with it.
6. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
For those unfamiliar with this phrase, it concerns the amount of traffic directed to your website through the results of individual search engines like Google, Firefox, and Internet Explorer. You do this by featuring keywords on your website, such as in posts and articles, that are typically searched by consumers on the internet. Optimizing your website encourages more traffic to it and thus makes it more likely to appear in searches using these keywords.
You could also consider white hat content distribution. These uses are considered as ethical means of optimization, such as following search engine guidelines whilst catering to a human audience. This latter aspect often involves ensuring any website changes are for the benefit of users. It also takes a long term approach, which may seem a more natural one when you consider that it usually takes time for things to gain traction in regards to SEO rankings. Furthermore, this approach tends to provide a lasting impact because, during the process of discovering relevant keywords for your website’s SEO, it can provide consistent rankings. These three aspects are considered ingenious and thus are free from manipulation.
In contrast, there is a black hat content distribution that will provide quicker results in terms of SEO content. However, using this method is seen as violating search engine etiquette. Google, in particular, has guidelines to avoid using this approach, which can incur penalties. These can include manual measures directly from Google that involves human intervention. This can involve preventing your site from appearing in any Google search, such is the seriousness of using black hat content distribution. If this was to occur then it would negatively harm the purpose of your press release and possibly your image.
It would be prudent to think of your audience and how your message is best conveyed to them for maximum impact. Although many people use the internet, not all use the same platforms or visit the same sites, you need to understand your target market. It may be more beneficial to focus on different media with less prominence on the internet, depending on whom you are targeting. Importantly, one size does not fit all with press releases, so this provides you with the opportunity to make sure yours is relevant, current, and unique. You want your message to stand out and not blend in.