The media landscape has changed a lot in recent years and the ways in which we share news has intensified and become more time consuming. Because of this, many businesses continue to rely solely on press releases to secure media coverage of an announcement or newsworthy story. The fact is that press releases are a great tool to generate awareness of a major company announcement, an event, award or other recognition. Press releases, however, should be part of an overall public relations (PR) strategy to get more valuable publicity. A PR strategy could include other activities such as:
- Media pitching is one of the best ways to entice the media to tell your story. A pitch consists of an email or phone call to an editor or reporter with a story idea that you would like them to cover and, in turn, be interviewed on the topic.
- Media meet and greets are a great way to build one-on-one relationships with local, national and industry media. Meet and greets are an opportunity to connect and build rapport with editors, reporters and others.
- Developing content such as an opinion-editorial to a newspaper, which would showcase your expertise on a specific topic.
Prior to developing a pitch, securing a meet and greet or developing an opinion-editorial, you must determine your audience, the media outlets you want to target and a timeline of when to execute the activities. Proper planning will set you up for PR success.
But let’s not forget the importance of a press release. They are still alive and well and companies continue to get valuable publicity for spreading their message. When developing a press release, it should be emailed to the media in a timely manner, to the correct person and follow-up is key. Press releases should be incorporated into your overall PR strategy to:
- Generate awareness: Press releases allow businesses to reach a large audience and generate greater awareness and brand recognition.
- Reach an even bigger audience: Using a press release distribution network, such as PRNewswire or PRWeb, is a great way to reach a much larger audience. One press release could reach thousands of journalists and publications that will repost your press release online and in print.
- Control your message: You control the message, provide the quotes and determine the call of action. Also, by including keywords in your press release that you want to rank for in Google/Bing. (i.e. if you are a hair salon make sure you use keywords that customers – not you – would use to search for your services/products via Google) you are more likely to be found online by new customers. For example, for legal representation, more individuals search for lawyers rather than
- Make it easier for journalists to fact check: Press releases make it easy for journalists to find and access the information they need to write a story about your news.
- Enhance your search engine ranking: If you earn media coverage that includes links back to your website, it can help improve your website’s search engine ranking on Google, Bing and others.
Don’t let today’s media landscape prevent you from developing a more diverse PR strategy. Set yourself up for success by contacting Chartwell Agency. We can design a plan that will help you earn more meaningful media coverage, reach more of your target audience and meet your overall business goals.