There is an old expression, originating in England, that is often quoted as “You’re preaching to the choir.” Although this idiom has varied nuanced meanings, the idea is that one is trying to inform folks who have already listened to what one is saying.
In marketing, companies often fall into a similar trap when they limit their promotional efforts. They may write blogs to post on their site or maybe send out a few messages, such as emails, to an existing list of customers and prospects.
I am not suggesting that either of these activities is pointless. Writing blogs, in particular, increases a firm’s chances of being indexed in search results, a process called SEO, or search engine optimization. Sending emails is a nice way to stay in touch with your existing list of contacts. Nevertheless, I submit that press releases confer additional benefits that neither blogs nor email campaigns can deliver.
How News Can Make Any Firm Famous
If distributed by a newswire service, a press release will get coverage by a variety of outlets, which increases both public awareness and the odds of being indexed by a search engine. If well written, with the appropriate links included, news releases will also increase the firm’s website traffic. When written as news, not a marketing promo, news releases enjoy greater “editorial credibility” than blogs. In other words, people are more likely to believe in their veracity.
Additionally, news releases perform well on social media. If the issuing firm posts the news release on their website, they can link to it in social media with catchy “teaser” copy, which can drive prospects to the firm’s site. By adding what are called “backlinks” to a news release — links to partners, industry influencers, vendors and other potentially interested parties — organizations can increase their distribution.
News releases are also relatively inexpensive for the publicity they provide. As a final perk, news websites are the favored source of online information for American readers (26%; with search far behind at 12%), If a company structures its news release appropriately and promotes it to media (what is known as “pitching,”) they may get coverage on one of those sites, increasing their reach even further.
The Value of “Staying Local”
The average business owner may doubt that they can get a media outlet to run their news release, but nothing could be farther from the truth. Will they end up in the Wall Street Journal or the New York Times? Probably not. But if they curate a relationship with local media by providing quality releases on a regular basis, they absolutely should get pick up there.
Furthermore, if they make an effort to build that relationship, a local media representative may reach out to them when they are seeking input for a story about their industry or product category. They may even interview the business owner as a subject matter expert.
In summary, beyond increasing the visibility of a firm’s brand and providing great fodder for social media and the website, posting news releases can help any company build authority and credibility. It encourages loyalty and trust among customers and prospects who see the company releasing “news.” Since local customers or firms are often the best source of new business for many organizations, positive publicity on a local scale can be invaluable.
For most business owners, the main challenges with news releases are crafting them to be compelling and promoting them effectively. Some are afraid to try for fear of creating a publicity debacle. Michael Mackenzie Communications has a long history of helping its clients get great results from their news releases. We research, write and distribute these news release for our clients, relieving them of all the concern and hassle. If you are interested in learning more about the news release process and how you can leverage news to achieve great results, we invite you to call us at (404) 445-1842.
This post is courtesy of MMC Content Manager Jennifer Farwell