I hear your cries of ‘but isn’t digital marketing on the rise?’, And we all know the answer to that is a resounding yes. But that doesn’t mean the press release is dead. Far from it.
Yes, waffling hyper-promotional press releases are dead – they always were and they always will be. But in today’s highly visual, clickbait saturated world you still need to get quality news stories out there to get your messages heard and that all important publicity.
Gone are the days of reporters trawling through each and every press release they receive to find a news hook. Today you need to give them the story on a plate. And if you have a punchy, well put-together story that’s relevant to their audiences you’ll likely get media coverage. If you don’t, then you won’t.
A press release represents some of the most important 500-odd words you are going to write for your business if you want media coverage. It needs to be newsworthy and engaging. Bold statements or a bit of humour can help you to get attention, but being newsworthy is key. No one will publish a ‘brag-a-thon’ about how great you are – that’s advertising.
Let’s look at how to make your press release attention grabbing. Firstly, it’s absolutely critical that you get the key points across quickly in the headline and the first few lines, setting the scene for the rest of the story and piquing their interest. The realities of today’s newsrooms are such that you literally only have seconds to grab an editor’s attention, so don’t be ambiguous in the opening few words. Be clear.
Once you’ve established the key points, the next thing is to make sure you get some clear facts in there to substantiate what you’re saying. As well as trying to get the editor’s attention, you’re also writing for the publication’s readership, so the content needs to be interesting to them and factual rather than a matter of opinion. Adding in some quotes if relevant can also help boost the calibre of your article with a few choice words from a voice of authority on the topic.
And, with digital in mind, you need to ensure that your release is optimised.
So now you’ve got a quality press release to send out. What is this going to achieve for your company? A nice piece of coverage that makes you stand out? How about taking it one step further by adding in some backlinks to the text, driving potential customers directly onto your homepage or product pages?
You can also get some tracking in there to establish exactly which publications are taking an interest in your article. Rather than just including images with the text when you circulate it, images can be made available via an online form, where anyone downloading them needs to submit their company details before they can gain access. This takes some of the legwork out of coverage searching later on, and helps you build up a picture of whether you’re hitting the right targets with the right messages.
Does all this sound like too much hard work? Not everyone is a born press release writer, and that’s okay. At Allotts we’re the experts at it. We specialise in writing professional press releases that deliver results for companies large and small all over the world. Don’t let your news become part of the piles of ignored stories.
Contact us on 01423 867264 to find out how we can help you be heard.