Writing effective press releases for technical and industrial products for online media outlets can significantly boost your website’s exposure.
Industrial Marketing Consultant, Conrad Bailey
The most prevalent and detrimental characteristic of online press releases is that the majority of them are poorly optimized for search engines, lack value, and are simply boring. It is unsurprising that so many Web site promoters complain about the lack of response to their press releases. They will point the finger at the media, the media’s audience, and even the competition… but almost always, the real issue is the press release itself.
It is irrelevant whether you call it a press release, news release, or media release; if it lacks value, relevant keywords, and, of course, newsworthy content, it is not even worth distributing. It makes no difference how many media outlets you send it to; if your message does not reach your target market, nothing else matters.
Put Branding Aside and Focus on Selling
The most pervasive myth in public relations and, more broadly, in the advertising industry is the “need” for branding. Simply inquire of any competent direct marketer about branding and you will receive an answer. Branding is for large corporations with unlimited funds to spend… or should I say toss. Branding is a poor excuse for what I refer to as simple-minded marketing that generates little, if any, measurable return on investment.
Consider this: Did you know that the word Coca Colaâ is the second most recognized word on the planet, trailing only the word “Okay?” Nonetheless, the Coca Cola company continues to be one of the most aggressive advertisers in the world. Coca Cola appears to be everywhere, from television and radio commercials to sporting events and bulletin boards.
With such a sizable marketing budget, some may consider all of this promotion to be branding. However, a closer examination of their commercials reveals that they are always marketing to a specific demographic, primarily consumers between the ages of 17 and about 35. Why, you inquire? They are strategically generating new generations of Coca-Cola drinkers through extensive use of clever customer-centered marketing. Clearly, their marketing campaigns extend far beyond branding. Similarly, when writing press releases, the same approach should be taken.
How To Create An Effective Headline
A press release’s headline is directly responsible for 50% of its success or failure. It is the first sentence the editor reads, so it had better be pretty good. Take your time and create a headline that addresses a specific issue. Alternatively, you could pose an open-ended question to pique interest and generate immediate interest. The most effective headlines are client-centered messages that convey value and/or allude to a problem that people in your target market face.
The Benefits Of Using A Sub-Headline
Your press releases should always include a subheadline or lead paragraph that succinctly but accurately summarizes the content of the release and explains why it is newsworthy.
A sub-headline is frequently the deciding factor in whether an editor or prospect decides to read the rest of the material. Simply remember to avoid marketing hype and concentrate on the news you are providing, which should add value to the editor’s audience.
The Press Release’s Body
Writing press releases for technical and industrial products is not an art, as many public relations professionals assert. As with anything else, practice makes perfect. The trick is to constantly monitor and analyze press releases published in a variety of publications… preferably those submitted by competitors in your industry. This will give you a good idea of the types of press releases published by various media outlets that cater to your target audience.
Additionally, with a little research, you can determine which press releases are generating the most traffic online. Numerous news distribution websites (see examples below) categorize or list thousands of press releases according to their popularity. It is simple to determine which releases are generating the most interest at the moment based on the number of clicks and/or views they receive. As a result, you can use that information to craft a similar but entirely different press release that will generate just as much, if not more, interest. At the very least, by analyzing the press releases issued by your competitors, you will generate a slew of excellent ideas for writing highly effective material.
Some Points to Consider When Writing a Press Release
• Keep it brief, no more than one page (approximately 240 words), four to six paragraphs with no more than three to four sentences each; Bear in mind that you are writing for the editor, your intended audience, and the search engines... all of whom have distinct needs.
• Write about the facts in the same way that a journalist would. Avoid all sales hype at all costs or your material will be rejected by the editor; Always incorporate keywords into the release that ‘flow’ naturally with the copy. Avoid keyword stuffing; • Each paragraph should be newsworthy and factually accurate enough to stand alone as a press release if necessary; • The closing paragraph should include a brief description of your company’s profile, target market, and corporate capabilities; End the release with an editorial contact person’s name, telephone number, and email address, as well as a company contact person’s name, telephone number, and email address.
Publication of Your Press Release
To begin, you should submit your press release to one of the numerous free press release distribution sites available. Additionally, the majority of them offer paid submission options that can significantly increase distribution. Here are my top ten press release distribution sites from which we have gotten the best results. The following are listed in no particular order.
• www.prweb.com • www.arrivenet.com • www.pr9.net • www.1888pressrelease.com • www.prleap.com • www.sbwire.com • www.prfree.com • www.przoom.com • www.sbwire.com • www.pr.com
Trade Publications Available Online
There are numerous online media directories; some are free, while others are quite expensive. Among them is Gebbie Press All-In-One Media Directory, which can be found at Gebbiepress.com. They provide a comprehensive collection of trade magazines that you can access for free directly from their website. You are sure to come across publications that cater to your target market… be sure to send them your press release.
Additionally, I have used the publications portal Publist.com extensively to locate hundreds of trade magazines, journals, and newsletters published worldwide. Yes, that directory is also free, but I have discovered that it is in desperate need of updating, as a number of publications on the site are no longer in print. Nonetheless, I am confident you will find the site useful for locating print and electronic trade publications that would be an excellent fit for your press release.
Additionally, our partner site, www.IndustrialLeaders.Tradepub.com, features hundreds of pre-selected trade magazines and publications for industrial, technical, and engineering fields.
Simply ‘Google’ the ones that pique your interest to locate their Web site or to request a complimentary subscription. On a regular basis, new trade magazines are added.