What is a Press Release?

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The Power of an Optimized Press Release

A press release is a short, compelling news story written by a public relations professional and sent to targeted members of the media.

Bill Stoller provides a simplified definition: A press release is a pseudo-news story, written in third person, that seeks to demonstrate to an editor or reporter the newsworthiness of a particular person, event, service or product.

Note: Press releases follow the Associated Press (AP) style of writing.

Goal of a press release:

The goal of a press release is to interest a journalist, publication, or other media outlet with your news story.

A press release should contain the basics:

All the essential information: who? What? When? Where? Why? How?. The information in the press release should be thorough enough that a reader or journalist can pull what they need to put together something of their own.

In other words, outline the major facts of a news story in journalistic style.

Why write and send out press releases?

There are 1.3 billion search queries that produce organic search results on Google. As an entrepreneur, small business owner, or even as an individual part of a large corporation, exposure is key.

1. Whether companies are launching a product or service, releasing a book, signing a big client, or sharing other equally important news, they can make the most out of it by letting as many people know about it as possible. A press release combined with the reach of a newswire can do that.

2. Press release can help you target a niche market or geographic area.

3. Press releases can help bring in leads and add customers to your sales funnel with a proper call-to-action.

4. You can add anchor text and URLs in press releases that will help with your SEO to help your appear on the first page of Google for a competitive term which can drive traffic and create increased awareness to your site.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is where information from your company’s website and other online materials are “tagged” in order to ensure that the information is more readily found by “natural search” results.

5. Press releases help a company get media attention. With help from newswires (which is the outlet used to upload and send out press releases), companies are hardwired into a system of thousand of newsrooms and journalists.

Come back next week to learn about the Anatomy of a Press Release!