Let me tell this to you straight: most journalists will never write about your company or product. Why not? It’s not newsworthy! When I say newsworthy, I mean something new in your company that someone besides you cares about.
Most small businesses have a tough time finding a good story. It’s one of the biggest barriers I see to a killer online press release.
I recommend coming up with a great story, to essentially pre-write the story. You’ve done most of the work for the writer, be they a journalist or a blogger.
Another thing: most press releases news organizations receive are deleted or thrown away upon arrival. But here’s a secret – online it doesn’t matter because you decide what gets published. All you need to do is write a press release and distribute it through an online news portal.
Top Seven Press Release Ideas
- Case Studies, data and surveys.
If you have research to share, a press release is a great way to do that. So maybe you looked through your customer list and found that small businesses with a blog get 5x more traffic to their web site. Expand that and send it out!
- Make Lists.
Just like this article, you can create stories around a list. Information like “The 3 Mistakes Most Press Release Writers Make” “Five Free News Sites that are Worth the Money,” “Best Way to Optimize a press release” make good stories. To get ideas, search a web site like Digg.com with a general term, like, “press release.”
- Publicize a Good Cause.
This is the story about how you and your team took the day off to serve homeless youth. Or how John Chow is helping feed the homeless at Thanksgiving. Look for these types of stories and write them up in a press release.
- Provide Helpful Information.
This type of press release shares your knowledge and expertise. Examples: “How to Save your Press Release from the Garbage Can” “How to Pitch Journalists on Twitter,” or “Save Money by Doing your Own PR Online.” Add some quotes and my company name and I could even make this story into a press release.
- Give the Major News Story a Local Spin.
You’ll need to act fast to capitalize on this opportunity but it can be worth it. When big news hits and you can add your take, you can be a local expert on the topic. A celebrity dies and it’s in the news – and you can tie it into your company you’ll get more exposure. Recently my video editor made a video about a hurricane that hit where he lives. It got over 40,000 views on YouTube. He could’ve sent out a press release with the video embedded in it. Just remember that it has to apply. Be creative but don’t overdo it.
- Find the Strange and Bizarre.
This can go viral more quickly. Find the odd, sensational, strange and deranged to write about. The stranger the story, the more likely you’ll get publicity from your press release. This is extreme marketing. Like if you’re a mattress company and you find the world’s most filthy mattresses or a story about a round mattress that rotates and plays music.
- Find Trends.
This is one of my favorites. There are sites to help you find trends but the best angle is to look inside your own business. Are your customers acting differently than the past? Maybe the new type of homebuyer has different expectations than a real estate company is used to. That’s a press release opportunity. Describe and talk about how your firm meets the needs of this group. Get good quotes from your agents to back up the story.
Most businesses overlook many opportunities to send out a press release and get some media coverage. Many times they blog about it, limiting the reach they could have if they distributed it through an online news distribution site.
Use these tips and write your own killer press releases – and you’ll get media biting. And if you don’t, please distribute your news online and blog about it. Then people can find your story regardless of if media picks it up or not. That way your business will live on in search engines forever.
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