Press releases can still be an effective way to get publicity, but distribution methods have changed. Before the internet, press releases were distributed by newswire, postal mail or fax. They may be sent by these methods today, but the vast majority are distributed online via email or online press release distribution services.
One advantage of online press releases is that they can be optimized for the search engines to help your site rank better for your targeted keywords. And, unlike the past where press releases had a shelf life of approximately seven seconds, online releases can be available for many years. I still get contacted occasionally because of releases I put online years ago.
Here are some of the best places to distribute your press releases.
PRWeb.com – One of the internet’s leading press release services, PR Web submits releases to a huge network of journalists and bloggers. They also submit releases directly to major search engines and news sites. PRWeb charges a fee for each release depending on the features desired, and subscription plans are available.
PRLog.com – PRLog does not offer as many features as PRWeb, but it is free to post your release on the site. All submissions are optimized for search engines, and premium distribution packages are available for a fee.
News outlets in your niche – If you can’t afford a paid submission service, it’s a good idea to submit your press release directly to some publications that are relevant to your niche. A quick Google search should bring up some options if you don’t have any in mind. Visit their websites to find out where you should send news releases. If you can’t find that information, email the editor to request it. If you don’t want to do the research yourself, I have several media contact lists available, or can create a custom media list for you based on your keywords.
Local news outlets – Even if your target market is not local, your local news outlets may be interested in news about your local business. I once got stories in two local newspapers by sending a release announcing that I had been featured in a national magazine. The newspapers did not write about the fact I was in a magazine, but they became aware of me because of my release, and the fact that a national magazine found my story interesting made me more interesting to my local media. If they publish your release online, it could help bring traffic to your site. Visit the websites of local media to find contact information, or order a media contact list from me.
Your website – It’s always a good idea to add your press releases to your own site. Consider adding a media page to your site, with links to resources for the media, such as photos (both high-resolution and web-resolution), information about you, your company and your products, stories where you have been featured, videos of you and, of course, your press releases.That way any members of the media that visit can easily access your press releases and information about you that may entice them to feature you. At the very least, putting press releases on your site could help you get more search engine traffic.
Press releases are just as important today as they were when print publications were the primary sources of news—maybe more so. A good press release can go a long way in promoting your business.