In life as well as business, there is always competition; and with competition, you have to find a way to stand out for the mountain of other similar businesses so you can be seen and utilized by your target audience.

To do this, you begin with an efficient network of press relations. Press releases are part of our content marketing here at ZooSEO.

It can be a headache at times to find that PR success you are looking for, especially in the beginning. However, it doesn’t have be stressful or bring you anxiety. It is truly very simple to distribute your brand name in the media and online.

So breathe deeply, put on a smile and implement these 5 easy techniques for success.

1. Develop Good Connections

No matter how amazing your press release is, if will go unnoticed if it is sent to the wrong people. So, begin thinking about who specifically you want to reach. What people is your press release speaking to?

  • Determine your target audience and choose the media outlets that your target clients would most likely be utilizing each day.
  • Next, analyze each section of those publications to decide where your brand story would fit. For example, are you announcing a new business opportunity or perhaps raising awareness about a new line of products?
  • It’s important to note that not everything qualifies as a priority news story, so keep this in mind should you be tempted to fire off a fast email to a major newspaper editor. It most likely will never be opened and you risk getting labeled as spam.
  • Instead, look to the editorial contacts of each division, and then go directly to the bottom of the totem pole. Basically, if you’re aiming for a big publication, it is likely that even the assistant editors won’t have the time to look through the many press releases flowing into their inbox.
  • Reach out to the mainstay reporters first, and not just by shooting off an impersonal email which they already get hundreds of. Rather, give each reporter a phone call before you send them anything. Introduce yourself and explain what you are advocating and ask them it that is something they are interest in. Give them a human voice to connect with the information you do send them. It is truly incredible how effective a 3-4 minutes telephone call can increase your chances of getting published.

2. Remember the 5 W’s

Follow these 5 W’s in creating your company’s press release:

  • WRITING

After you have determined your target audience, begin writing. Busy journalists simply don’t have time to correct your work or rewrite drivel. Make sure your work is correct the first time.

  • WINNING RELEASE

First and foremost, you need to write your press release as if it’s a news story. Use an inverted pyramid for a winning release, which is a technical way of saying that your most “meaty” bits should be at the very top of your release. Basically, your initial sentence in your press release should summarize the whole story in just those few words. This means answering all the questions as to who, what, where, when and why it is worth the readers time.

As your written work progresses, it should have objective language. When it is peaks interest enough, many busy publications will simply cut and paste it to their sites. To obtain this kind of a winning release, you must give your work the tone of a conventional news bulletin.

  • WHY it is STRONGER or BETTER

When your business is making a type of assertion in your press release; acknowledgment of the opposing viewpoints in the same fashion of a new story and then proving why your opinion is stronger and more powerful will impress editors as well as help persuade readers that they “must have” your new service or product.

  • WRAP UP

In closing, wrap up your press release with some context: Is this the first time your new service or product has been made available in your area? Will this improvement affect your business’s standing in a specific industrial sector?

  • WIDEN

When you show how your news item fits into a bigger picture, it will remarkably widen the interest encompassing your press release. After all, your brand’s new “smart coat” might appeal to only a limited number of clients, however many readers will want to express how they feel about the advancement of wearable technology.

3. Add a dash of flavor

When you have completed writing your press release, examine where you could break things up by adding a bit of color.

Keep in mind that to slide it past their editors, journalists may need quotes from two or more people within the business. After all, a story doesn’t have much worth it if doesn’t have some names and faces attached.

This is your opportunity to drop in a splash of color and analysis to your news item. Try spicing up the technical specifications of a new product with tasty adjectives. Maybe even compare it with products of the competition and state boldly why your brand’s product is superior.

Nowadays, no one has time for news that is bland and ordinary.

One note though: Do not state anything that is overly disrespectful or damaging about your competitors. Doing so could turn your audience against you. Having said that, your quotes should aim to create friendly controversy about your brand. If you are lucky, people will disagree with your business’ bold declarations and turn your news story into a genuine debate giving it plenty of exposure.

4. Give a Friendly Reminder

After your press release has been signed, sealed and delivered, it’s time to wait. Even still, there are some journalists that could use a nudge of encouragement. Once a day or two has passed without a response, try giving them a follow up email or a quick phone call.

News rooms are generally fast-paced. It’s possible that just a few lines of your press release were read before the reader had to move on with other work. Giving them a friendly reminder about your story and why it is of interest to them cannot hurt.

Eventually, you will catch them on a slower paced day and they will be very thankful that you assisted them to fill a news slot.

5. Publish – Publish – Publish

Okay, after getting a newspaper or magazine to go ahead with your press release and it’s finally out there, be careful not to just sit back and celebrate. You now want to help get as many people as possible to see it. Be sure to capitalize on it.

  • Tweet the link to your followers
  • Begin a conversation on Facebook about it
  • Email a link to your partners and associates

Now is also a good time to follow up with other publications that you have approached. Show them that someone else is running the story. This might give them the push they need. If others are showing a real interest in your story, bigger publications have no option but to publish it. News is news.

It may be advantageous to approach various publications post-release to determine a way to repackage the story to fit their needs. For example, maybe you can give a regional or local slant on a new-product release. Often you can earn a press release a much bigger space in print if you make the effort to offer a customized slant to different publications in this way, you are maximizing exposure and they get to uphold some claim to exclusivity.

When all is said and done, smart PR is all about perseverance and patience. If your brand’s news is truly interesting, it will ultimately get the exposure it’s entitled to, as long as you continue to make the efforts to get it out there. So build sincere relationships with like-minded journalists, and continue to evaluate ways to improve your media reach.

Feature image source: creativenoggin.com