As we discussed in our Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) guide, one of the ways to get inbound links is to send out online press releases.
Press releases can contain keyword rich links which point back to your website. And if they picked up by a genuine journalist then they can raise awareness in the traditional way too.
Read on to find the 10 essential steps to create your perfect press release.
1. Grab your keywords
Those of your following an SEO program will already have a list of keywords that you want to focus on. (For more information about SEO read our SEO Guide.)
Try to use the keywords in all sections of the press release we discuss below. Don’t squeeze them in so that it ceases to make sense – remember that the PR still needs to be readable by a human.
2. Decide what to write about
It’s best to focus on just a single point for your press release, rather than try and include all your news.
If there are any recent events that have taken place in your business, these might be right for a release. If you’ve opened a new branch; been nominated for an award; expanded; started stocking new lines, these could all be the subject matter.
Alternatively you can create your own news. Have you surveyed your staff or customers and found something of interest? Have you held a competition? Have you made a donation to Charity? These could be good subjects too.
Here’s the crunch bit: write down your news in just 1 line.
This keeps it simple, focused, and gives you something to refer back to. It also stops you wandering off topic later in the release.
Boring but important, there are some elements that a press release should always include. From the top these are:
Date. Your contact details. Company logo (if you have one)
The Intro paragraph
The main body
The closing paragraph
Notes to Editors
4. The Headline
Place the headline in the center of the page below the contact details, in bold. Use the headline to concisely describe the content of the release. You need to make it easily and quickly understood by a business editorial person.
The other important factor is to try and use a headline that uses keyword from your SEO list.
5. The Introduction
The first paragraph should include all the main points of your press release. It should work like an expanded version of the headline. If you haven’t mentioned it by the end of this paragraph, don’t mention it at all. Make it no more than a few lines long. Work on the basis that most people won’t read on from here, so you need to make your point quickly.
Classic journalism looks at who, where, what, and why. Include these and you’ve nailed it.
Again, try to use your keywords in this paragraph, but only where they are part of the organic flow of prose.
6. The Main body
This is where you can expand on the essentials covered in the introduction. The main body should be no longer than 2 paragraphs. Its a good idea to reinforce any points made by including a quote from a relevant source, often the Managing Director .
If you’ve got any colourful facts or supporting market research or statistics then the main body is a good place to include it.
7. The Closing Paragraph
The final paragraph can include more general information about the company, such as the number of years it has been going, where it is located.
Gaining inbound links to your website is one of the main reasons to distribute online press releases, so you need to make sure to include some! As discussed in part 5, use keyword-rich anchor text to link to an appropriate page on your website in the introduction. Many online press release publishers will not include this link. For that reason, make sure you include a link at the bottom of your closing paragraph. This is the way we do it for WebEden:
for more information go to http://www.webeden.co.uk
After your final paragraph, you need to let editors know that the press release has finished by writing:
10. Notes to editors
After the end of the actual press release, you can write brief notes to editors who might want further information.
You may have high-res images for them to use, or be able to supply more in depth information to interested journalists. This is a good place to let editorial staff know about this sort of thing.
And that’s it
Follow this 10 point plan to get the most from your online PR. It will help boost you up the Search Engine Results Pages by generating inbound links, and will also raise awareness of your business amongst your target audience.