The press release remains a popular public relations tactic for good reason: it provides incredible value. A press release not only informs the media about what’s new with your organization, but thanks to our digital world, the press release can instantly keep your publics – customers, prospects, partners, potential acquirers – up to date on your progress and successes.
Here are 5 ways the press release consistently returns value and should always be part of your PR mix:
1. It is a controlled piece of content that is trusted by the media – thus resulting in increased media coverage.
Reporters trust the facts within a press release because they have been vetted through your internal team, and often legal and compliance teams. Thus making press releases a reliable source for media, analysts and financial reporters to reference for articles. The information within a press release is further verified when the release is issued over Business Wire, PR Newswire, or another reputable wire service.
The quotes within the press releases, proof points, stats, features, and corporate all come from your organization and are what you (often with the advice of your agency) choose to focus on. This is an incredible opportunity to control your narrative and influence your audiences. There’s a lot of value in that.
Pro Tip: Make the information easy-to-access on your website and newswire sites; your chances of getting editorial coverage increase significantly.
2. It informs your target publics quickly and all at once – saving time and resources.
When you put a press release out over a news wire, you not only get your news distributed to newsrooms across the city, state or nation (the area depends on the circuits you choose), you also get instant distribution across portals that agree to post the news wire’s press release.
That being said, putting a release on the wire is not enough . . .
Your information should also be emailed directly, with customized notes or “pitches” to the editors and writers who regularly cover news about your industry. Some press releases will be sent early to certain media contacts under an “embargo” or pitched the day the news is released over a news wire. How this is done is dependent on your media relations strategy and which outlets you’d like to cover your announcement most.
The end result is that this one document/your press release informs the media, and in turn your target audiences, quickly and efficiently.
3. It results in greater media coverage and a valuable, implied third-party endorsement.
Whether or not a reporter interviews a source, they know they can rely on press releases for the vetted and important details. Reporters and editors regularly tell us (and we also consistently witness) that they use press releases to pull information, confirm details and fact check. Press releases provide pertinent details such as dates, properly-attributed quotes, features, links, pricing, product availability and more in one quick, accessible resource. If writers and editors can easily access information and it’s written in news or AP style, they are more likely to use the news or even pick up your announcement verbatim—one sign of a good press release.
This all works to create a third-party endorsement. The public knows news and editorial coverage isn’t paid for – you get coverage on the merit of your announcement, the credibility of your organization and the fact that you are identified as a reputable source. That is invaluable when you want to be known as a credible organization worth a look and purchase.
4. It tells a story over time – demonstrating your organization’s strengths.
When prospects, investors, analysts or potential acquirers wants to research your history, they look at official announcements your organization has made over time. Over progression of time, press releases can show continued activity and company advancement. Additionally, a press release makes a corporate proclamation seem much more real. Pair that with editorial coverage of the news, and you’ve got a powerful demonstration of credibility.
Pro Tip: Make sure your press release has solid data points such as hard facts, quantifiable numbers and real data that makes it compelling to the media.
5. It provides SEO and general visibility.
Your press release can increase search engine optimization (SEO). Thanks to distribution over digital news outlets, a press release with links to your website can offer valuable backlinks that optimize search and drive people to your website landing pages.
Pro Tip: Ensure your press release has the right links back to your organization’s homepage, product pages, About Us pages, executive bio pages, and special landing pages. Try to avoid sending readers to outside sources unless it’s a link to back up a claim or source a statistic.
What’s the value of getting included in an article from a target industry publications or site or a major business publication? The answers differ from person to person and company to company. But it absolutely creates credibility in the eye of the reader. The important thing to remember is the press release tells your story clearly, succinctly and effectively – and increases your chances of getting earned media coverage.
Take this example – Recently our firm wrote a press release and followed it up with proactive media outreach to introduce a client’s new service. It resulted in editorial hits in target media outlets, produced several high-quality leads and provided high-value content for the client’s site and social channels. For the amount of time we invested, the return was substantial in that it hit all of our key objectives, which in this client’s case are to build awareness for the company and its services, land media hits in top-tier trade and business publications, and support business development.
When you total the time and effort of writing and distributing a press release against the value it provides – informing your publics quickly, enhancing credibility, controlling your narrative, optimizing search, supporting business development, providing high-value content for your website and social sites – it’s an incredible value.
At Clearpoint Agency, we encourage our clients that put out regular press releases and the result is an increase in web traffic, media pickup, leads, and interest from investors. That’s value.
If you want to learn more about how press releases and supporting media outreach can benefit your brand, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.