The Online Press Release
Building Block of Online PR
I use PRWeb and other newswires for online press releases, but the message on PRWeb’s home page says it all: “Drive traffic to your website and reach millions of potential customers.”
That’s what it’s all about. Take full advantage of the opportunity to reach your ultimate audiences directly, whether customers, influencers or any other constituency, with press releases. Of course, you must build releases on carefully researched keywords and phrases.
Pitching Journalists with Online Press Releases
We do want to reach journalists, too, don’t we? When contacting journalists via email, I’ve found it especially effective to send a link to a release, with two or three bullets to explain what it’s about. I find many prefer this to receiving the full release in the email body. I never attach a document file unless asked.
Press Release Writing and Distribution
In case you wonder why I use the term “press release” instead of “news release,” it’s because far more people type “press release” into the search engines. It’s not even close. Google’s free keyword tool show about 823,000 global monthly searches for “press release” and about 90,500 for “news release.”
Following keyword research, you must decide which online press release format you prefer (you may want to look at this page first), then draft the release using keywords in the appropriate places. Online distribution is a separate matter from writing. Because the newswires, such as PRWeb, PR Newswire, PitchEngine and others, have different formatting rules, it’s a good idea to be aware of those differences before you make that choice.
But first, let’s look at how well-written releases get the attention of search engines – fast!
From Online Release to Page 1 Google in One Day
Here’s an example of an optimized online release that produced Page 1 Google search results for a small business in one day for the competitive search phrase “tankless water heater” (368,000 global monthly search volume, 1.27 million indexed pages).
It would take weeks, perhaps months, to get top Google search ranking by adding one new page to a Website. Why wait? Add that page as a press release, distributed online and added to the newsroom on your Website. It will get a lot more attention, faster, as the screen capture below proves.
Search engines have a favorable bias for news. Online press releases are one of the best ways to deliver it to them and human readers, regardless of the press release format you choose. Not only did this release get top results for our primary keyword phrase, it earned Page 1 Google search results for five other keywords, including the manufacturer’s name.
High rank in search engine results gets releases found faster and by more people. That makes for good results across the board – releases that get found easier get more clicks and more reads, exposing the anchor text links to readers, who click on them and go directly to your Website.
Well-written releases also get posted on news sites, such as Google News and Yahoo! News, and blogs (blogs do very well with search engines, too). In addition to the traffic online press releases drive to a Website, they also create links to that site from bigger sites, which raises your, or your client’s site profile with the search engines.
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Jim Bowman, The PR Doc®, looks for the latest trends and tools for small business marketing and passes along the best articles to you in condensed form in each edition.