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Are You Guilty of These 7 Press Release Sins?

by Melanie Rembrandt, www.rembrandtwrites.com on February 15, 2013

Save Money and Get Better Results with your PR Efforts

If you look on the Internet, you will see some horrible press releases. And the businesses that distributed them probably thought they would be inundated with media and sales inquiries as soon as the press releases went live. Has this happened to you? If so,

Are You Guilty of These 7 Press Release Sins?

1. Is it newsworthy?

While you may think that increasing sales by 40% or having an internal birthday party is news, the media and your target market may not. Before taking the time and effort to issue a press release, ask yourself if it really is newsworthy.

2. Why are you posting the press release?

Before writing your press release, figure out if you are trying to build online buzz with search engine optimization (SEO), spread the word about a newsworthy event to a specific audience, get media coverage, or something else. After all, if you are a small business looking for a big, cover-story, you will not get it from a simple press release. You will be better off pitching specific media-members via phone.

3. Is your press release optimized for the search engines?

If you don’t add specific keywords to your press release in the right location, you are missing out on a huge and inexpensive opportunity to be at the top of the search engines. Period.

4. Did you add a specific link to a Web page?

How are you tracking the results of your release? If you don’t add a hyperlink to a specific Web page in your press release, how are you going to know how many people were really interested in your news and took action because of it?

5. Is your press release free of errors?

Is your press release well-written in the standard, AP style? If you distribute a boring release that has errors, you will make a bad impression. Instead, hire a professional, SEO copywriter to help you write and proofread your release.

6. Did you spend too much on press-release distribution?

If you are a small business announcing an award, promotion or other, internal news, don’t spend thousands on sending the release out via a wire service. Instead, pitch specific media-members who will be interested in the news, and post your release on less expensive or free, industry-related sites.

7. What time did you distribute you press release?

If you distribute your press release after office hours, you will not get as many media members seeing your news. Send out your release when you know your targeted, media-members are in the office (and not on deadline). You also want to make sure you are available to respond to calls when your press-release posts.

Stop Wasting Time and Money!

So many people think that “PR” equals “press release.” It does not. Before you send out a release, know why you are sending it, what you want to accomplish and how you are going to track results. Then, have a professional SEO copywriter write and proof it for you and figure out the best distribution plan to accomplish your goals.

Well-written, newsworthy press releases with SEO can significantly increase online awareness and sales cost-effectively. But if you don’t put some thought and effort into your press-release process, you will waste time and money and see little results.

 

For more help avoiding these press release sins, check out these SEO copywriting and PR tips here.

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