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Sometimes the simplest approach to online advertising is the best and this is why we recommend that you focus your attention on sending out regular press releases in order to spread the word about company developments and company products, even if your business is relatively small and locally based.
In fact, the use of an effective press release, whatever the size of your company, should be considered fundamental as it is still one of the best ways to generate interest in your company with journalists and one of the best ways of using link bait to your advantage too.
Why should you include regular releases in your marketing campaign?
There are a number of basic reasons as to why press releases work so effectively as part of any regular marketing campaign.
These reasons include the following:
1. Journalists read releases and could choose to run a story on your company or in reference to your company at any point.
2. Press sites are given heavy weighting from search engines like Google and so they help to improve the effects of your SEO development and your PPC campaigns too.
3. Releases work well with local citations which is excellent news for smaller companies with a local target audience in mind.
4. Releases are so adaptable that they have even evolved to work beautifully alongside all kinds of social networking, including Facebook and Twitter, to generate a real online “buzz” about your company in record time.
How do you write the best release possible?
Bearing the positive elements of the classic release in mind, how does one create the best release possible? What are the important things to do or cover in a press release?
Follow the tips on writing press releases below in order to achieve online press release success as soon as possible:
Every release should cover the who, what, where, when and why.
If you are a local business and you are looking for a local target audience, include your full street address and phone number near the end of every single press release to get the possible trade from it as possible and even a citation from another website too with any luck.
Tell a story. Everyone loves a human element and a narrative can truly help to soften hard advertising blurb or company facts with ease. “Once upon a time” never goes out of fashion!
Analyze the use of keywords about the topic that you are covering in your press release using the Google Auto Tool and make sure that they are included in the body of your release.
Some press sites are free, but others you have to pay for. Some sites guarantee that your release will be permanent, other sites have a sell-by date. Some sites allow links and others don’t. Some sites distribute through news search and major news sites too. Do your research and place your release on the site that really will work in your favor.
Archive copies of your press on your website. If the content was good enough to be published on a press release site, it is worth saving so that search engines can continue to pick up on its content in years to come.
Link to your website, Facebook, and Twitter accounts from your release and choose your anchor text wisely. Make sure that you anchor the links to keywords that you know people are going to search for to find you and this particular press release.
Promote your release once it’s issued. Link to it, share it via social media accounts and send it to local reporters or bloggers of interest, choosing those reporters and bloggers carefully to match your press releases to their interests.
If you don’t have something worth saying; if you don’t have any news to report, don’t write a press release. Don’t waste journalists’ time or yours. Releases should be issued when something is worth highlighting.
Regular press is good. Too many will trigger overkill and people will get sick of seeing your little updates dropping into the press release scene every day. Try to get the rhythm and volume of your material right over time.
Most business owners fail to see the benefit of using press releases as a way to get their online or offline businesses known. Because of this very fact, those who do use them will drive a lot of new business to their online or offline business if done properly.
If you think that your business is not newsworthy, think again. Go to Google news or any news related website and you will find many well-written, business related, press releases.
A press release is a simply unknown news. It doesn’t have to be breaking news. It only needs to be newsworthy. If you have a product or service that no one knows about then you have newsworthy, press release material.
Here’s what happens when you submit a press release. Your press release is submitted to news sites, big and small. The news site will look at your press release and decide whether or not your press release is newsworthy or not. Most of the smaller sites will pick it up if it is properly written and easy to understand. The big guys such as CNN will look for unique information. Sites like Google and Yahoo is where an online business can do well because they are more apt to pick up a well-written release that is Internet or even better, it is search engine related.
The thing that you have to understand is that a press release is not an advertisement. It is a factual, narrative, newsworthy story and must be written that way. When you write a press release, you must write it in a third person fashion as if a reporter was interviewing you and the reporter is reporting your news to the world. In other words, when you write a press release, you are the reporter as well as the business owner who is being interviewed.
Writing a press release can be a daunting task because most of us are not used to writing in this way. However, once you have done a few of these it becomes much easier to do. As with anything that we do in life, the more we do it, the better we become at it.
If you have a new or existing business that you want to expose to the world there is no better way of doing it than through a well-written press release. If one of the big boys, such as Google, Yahoo, or even CNN picks it up, expect to get clobbered with more business than you can handle which is a nice problem to have.
If you feel that you are incapable of doing a press release yourself, you can always hire someone to do it for you. There are many services that will write it for a fee. Run a Google search for press release services. You will find a list of many who will perform this service for you.
Most press release sites have a free submission service as well as a paid service. While you can submit using the free version of the service, and you should for the most part, especially if you are just starting out however, you should use the paid submission service because of the extra benefits that it brings. With a paid submission, your press release will go out within a day or two and will be submitted to more news sites. I suggest that you do a paid submission quarterly and use the free service the rest of the time. Pay submissions are pretty inexpensive. PRWeb is one of the largest on the web charges $40. Paying $40 every three months won’t break anyone considering the extra advantages that it can bring to your business.
You should try and write the press release yourself because hiring someone to do it for you can be quite expensive and unnecessary because with practice anyone can write a good press release himself or herself. Check out PRWeb and run a search for your type of business and read through the press releases there to get a better idea of how a press release should be written, and what it should look like.
One last thing that you should know about submitting press releases, most business owners will only submit a press release quarterly at most, while many others will do it just once and not do it again. If you want to get ahead and stay ahead of the competition in the business field that you are in, you should submit a new press release monthly using the free submission services and pay for it every three months.
You will be amazed how much better your business will do by using press releases because of the free publicity that it will bring to your business. Write a new press release often and watch your business grow a lot faster.
Almost all media are sensible for – more or less – the same approach. There’s the guidelines or tips & tricks for the best press release and of course, there’s the human side (link to go to media relations)to get some good results. Most editors will scan through the pile of press releases and pick out the ones that fail certain criteria. Besides the ‘news-worthy’ side, there’s a number of criteria one has to take into consideration.
Here are some guidelines for writing a perfect press release
The header: The title or header of your press release should be short and simple. Lose all the burden of words and focus on the one topic of your news.
Who, what, when, where, why: The answers to these simple questions should be answered within the first paragraph. Please check if you have them lined up. In so many cases people simply forget one of these answers and it is really very sad to forget the Why when talking about a concert or so.
Remain objective: You are excited about your news and want the whole world to know about it. You want to shout it out to everyone! A press release, however, is not the place to shout or even establish an opinion. Try to stay objective when writing the press release. It will look and feel boring – but editors and journalists will appreciate your honesty.
Be available: Whenever a press release is due: please make sure that you are available for answering a question from the press. Be aware that news can be ‘caught’ by the morning shows on radio and television: be available! You don’t want to miss out on that!
Writing a press release
Writing a press release looks and sounds so easy. And in many cases when reading a good press release, it looks so simple! Anyone can do that!
Writing a press release takes time. It doesn’t only take time, it takes more than just time. There are specific requirements for a press release for the media to actually take it seriously.
There are a number of values for a press release to be taken into consideration for the media. Unless of course, your news is so hot, it will shake the world, here’s where to focus on:
- make sure the title is shorter than 70 characters
- use an under title
- mention the sender (that is you!)
- answer Who, What, Where, When, Why in the first paragraph
- use one paragraph for one topic
- write in objective terms
- use quotes and pictures if available
- try to keep it on one page
- don’t forget the “editorial note”
- be available to the press when issuing the press release
- post the press release openly in the mail AND send it as an attachment
When sending the press release to all your contacts in the media, please add your current and potential relations to the list as well. They are interested in your well-being, innovations, growth, and struggles as well, and they are part of your network. It is nicer to have them hear the news directly from you rather than reading it in the papers. That goes for bad and for good news.