press releases

How to Write a Press Release for Your Blog

press release for your blog Whether it's a business blog, a personal blog, or an online publication, writing a press release for your blog is a great way to create a little buzz and to build some referral traffic. Typically with news releases, the point is to get some media attention and to have the topic of your release covered by someone else. However, with a press release for your blog in online publication, the end goal is to get that news release in front of a lot eyes, the right eyes, so that they'll subscribe or at least read a blog post or two.

The Structure of  Press Release for Your Blog

If you decide to use a press release service to help you distribute your press release, that service may offer you some guidance on how to structure the press release for your blog. If you're not using a service, and are just going to write the press release on your own and to distribute it yourself, then structuring your release properly is important. Here are the major elements of a press release, appearing in the order they should appear in the release from top to bottom:

  • FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - This should appear in all capital letters, just like this, If, for some reason, you want the release to be released on a certain day, then at the top you can write, "ON EMBARGO UNTIL [INSERT DATE]". Yes, this ought to be in all capital letters as well.
  • Contact Information - This needs to be more than just the contact info for the blog or the online publication, but to a specific person in the case that someone would like to cover the release and ask a few questions. The contact information should include first and last name, address, phone number, and email, and in that order.
  • Headline - The headline can either be in all uppercase, or in uppercase and lowercase letter. It should also be in bold, but it doesn't have to be. If you need some guidance in writing a good headline, this article on blog article headlines offers some great tips. A press release isn't a blog article, but many of the practices of writing a headline apply to both types of content. A subheading would go right underneath the headline, but it is completely optional.
  • Dateline - Date - Lead Sentence - These three all appear in the first paragraph, in that order. The dateline, if you don't know, is the city of origin for your press release. Please put the city your blog or your online publication is based, or in what you city you are based. Do not put "the Internet," or "online" because the content is online. Date is self explanatory, and the lead sentence is your opening sentence.
  • Body - The main points of your press release. Keep both paragraphs and the press release short, no longer than one page (including everything prior to the body). Include a quote if possible.
  • Ending - The last paragraph should be a paragraph about your or the company. Don't forget to include the blog's or the online publication's website. Repeat a contact or other relevant source for further information.

What to Say in the Press Release for Your Blog

The tough part now is figuring out what to say in this press release, especially since you don't have a lot of room to say it. Essentially, you need to cover the "who", "what", "where," "when," "why," and "how" of your blog or online publication. Some good examples of information that would be answer these questions would be:
  • what your blog is about
  • who is the target audience
  • why does the blog exist
  • why should people care about the blog, or read it
  • when do you publish
  • who actually writes for the blog or online publication
  • where do you get your article ideas
  • where can people find your blog/articles
  • some of your most recent articles

Writing a press release for your blog or online publication is something that not a lot of people have tried, so it might be worth a shot for you, even if your blog or online publication has been around for some time. Overall, if you do write the press release for your blog correctly and excellently, then you at least have one more backlink and one more way for people to find your content online.

If you want some additional help writing press release, we have great Do's and Don'ts list for you to download. Learn a few tips in how to craft a press release that's filled with great content and follows best practices. Click the button below to download it.

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Is It a Good Idea to Write a Press Release about Your New Business?

writing press releasesWriting press releases on a regular basis is a great content marketing tactic. It builds inbound links, SEO, and brand awareness. Writing press releases on a weekly or biweekly basis also makes your business look fresh and active. But, if you're a new business, is it a good idea to write a press release about it?

Sure, but it can't be just about any old thing. You need to add the news angle to the press release, figuring out why people should care about the new business opening. Are you the first business of your kind? First in your area? Do you have a grand opening event associated with the new business? Any, or all, of those would make your new business press release newsworthy.

What doesn't make a good press release is if you simply announce the new business, or if you treat your press release as another ad. Press releases are not ads! Treat them like news teasers! You want to interest someone enough to be willing to learn more about your business or to write more about it. If your press release just talks about why your business is so great and why your products are so awesome without showcasing the value of it to people, then people aren't going to care. A good press release highlights that value.

If you're opening a new business or a new location, that's great! It's a great idea to write a press release about that. It's not a good idea to write a press release about a new phone number, web address, or website design. Quite, frankly, no one cares about that either. Just set up a redirect or forward to the new number and everything will be okay.

Writing press releases are a good idea for more than just a new business. If you hit a milestone, hire a new employee, form a partnership, host an event, or win an award, it's a good idea to write a press release on all those things as well. The point is to keep it newsy, keep it about something new that is happening to your company that would also be of interest to others outside of your company, like customers, potential customers, and news sites.

Overall, press releases are a good idea whether you are a new business or an established business. They can be an asset to your online marketing or content marketing strategy. If you're unsure about your online marketing, or how well it is working, then take our free web assessment to see how you stand against your competitors:


What is 'News' in Content Marketing?

news content marketingThe concept of "news" is something that I've seen get mixed up by small businesses all the time.  In their need of press releases, article marketing, business blogging, and a slew of other content marketing services, there's a huge misunderstanding of the different between news and marketing speak, of what constitutes news and what doesn't. This misunderstanding leads to press releases, articles, and blog posts going unread, unnoticed, and uncared for by anyone other than the company who produced the content.

Just what makes something news, or newsworthy? There are four criteria to news, so let's break them down one by one:

  1. Is it new? - In order for something to be news, it has to be new. That's why it's called news! And anything new is anything that's being reported or told for the fist time, with the caveat that it's recent and relevant. You may have held a great even several weeks ago, but writing a press release on how well it went will not garner much interest. That story is simply no new enough. However, if that same event helped the company to meet sales goals, or inspired a new employee to join the team, or inspired the company to host a future event, then any of those would be newsworthy enough for a good press release.
  2. Is it unusual? - Things happen all the time that are "new" at your business: a new customer, a new location, a new employee. But, is it unusual? Just because it's new doesn't mean it's unusual, and it doesn't mean that it's news. now, if that new customer is in an industry you have worked with yet, or the customer is really well-known to the general public (like a celebrity or a Fortune 500 company), then that's unusual enough to be news.
  3. Is it interesting or signficant? - As a disclaimer, new names, new website domains/designs, and new phone numbers never count as news. Why? It's not interesting or significant! No one would care about such changes except your company. News needs to be interesting or significant, and interesting and significant to people outside of the company. This is where that marketing speak tends to creep in and muddle the news. It could be new and unusual that you have a service that your competitors don't have, or that you're latest product is made from recycled materials, but to whom is that interesting and significant? Marketing speak is only interesting and significant to the one who's speaking.
  4. Is it about people? - News is centered around people, and the people your news should be centered around are your readers and customers. If there's a new industry trend happening, how would this affect your customers? If your customers are constantly asking the same questions, why not find the answers to those questions? That would be interesting and newsy to your customers. Consider a newspaper; if all the paper did was talk about themselves, then no one would buy it. Talk about what the reader or customer wants to talk about.

Those four criteria constitute news. Those who have a content marketing strategy that centers around producing news or newsworthy content need to keep this in mind in order to develop content that engages and attracts attention. As American editor Arthur McEwen said, "News is anything that makes a reader say, `Gee Whiz'!"

4 Quick Ways to Increase the Visibility of Your Press Releases

content marketing strategyPRWeb. PrLog. I-Newswire. All provide press release distribution services, and distrubtie hundreds of press releases every day. If press releases are part of your content marketing strategy, how do you make them stand out? How do you ensure that your press releases are getting the views you want? Here are five quick ways to improve the visibility of your press releases, and improve the effectiveness of your content marketing strategy:

  1. Post the Press Release on Your Website (but not your blog) - Press releases don't have to be a one-and-done piece of content. Create a "News" or "Latest News" page on you website, and repost your press releases there. Or, better yet, create an online media kit and include your most recent press releases. Posting them on your website no only imporves the visibility of your website on search engines, but recent press releases tell your web visitors that you're a company that's making news and getting things done.
  2. Target One or Two Keyphrases - First, target keyphrases instead of keywords because they have less competition, and they are more likely to generate traffice that's actually interested in your press release. Second, by targeting just one or two keyphrases, you're more likely to write a press release that engages the search engines as well as the readers. Third, it's much easier to integrate one or two keywords into the headline, subhead, and leade sentence instead of four or five.
  3. Include a Photo or Video- Photos are the number one factor that positively influences both views of your press releases and engagement with them. Research shows that either will get your press release more views than a press release that has neither. It's one more way to have your press release engage readers and journalists.
  4. Keep It Newsworthy - Press releases are also called news releases for a reason. They're supposed to be about something 'new', like a new hire, a new product, a new accomplishment, a new training program etc. If your press release is just about how great your company is, or something that isn't even new, then it won't get any visibility. As an FYI, a website isn't news. Marketing isn't news. A new phone number or company name change isn't news.

Press releases can become a vital part of a content marketing strategy, but should be treated like the content that will end up on your blog or in your ebook. Make sure that it will engage readers, and offer something informative and educational instead of just being advertising or promotional material.

Another important aspect of press releases is the headlines. If you want a little help with headlines, then check out the ultimate checklist to writing great blog article headlines. Yes, blog articles and press releases aren't the same, but there's still a thing or two that can apply to your press releases:


What Great Press Releases Can Do For Your Business

With all the buzz about content marketing and online marketing, a medium that's been missing from the discussion is press releases. I find this rather odd, since press releases are definitely an aspect of both online marketing and content marketing, and can accomplish things that blogs, white papers, and ebooks aren't really meant for.

One of the biggest things that press releases can accomplish that its provides an avenue for businesses to toot your own horn. Yes, with press releases, it's completely okay to talk about yourself and any good things you are doing, whether it's the launch of a new product, a new partnership, a new addition to the team. As long as its news, you can write about your and your business all you want. You can also easily distribute the press release across platforms such as, PRWeb, and PRLog.

If you're worried about search engine rankings and SEO, then publishing press releases on a regular basis is a good idea. Although the press releases aren't tied directly to your domain name, they do add visibility to your business if optimized appropriately. If you do weekly press releases optimizing the keyword "how to blog", for example, then those press releases are going to come up when people type in "how to blog." Hopefully, you've included contact information and a link or two in that press release, further boosting visibility.

There are lots of press releases going out each and every day. Not all of them are very newsworthy or even written very well. The point of press releases should be to increase visibility online in the search engines, not necessarily with other blogs or online publications. If you want visibility on those sites, then you need to get in touch with them directly. The people who handle the content for those sites aren't trolling press release sites for story leads, but they do appreciate it when press releases are sent to them directly. It's not guarantee, but it's more proactive then simply putting it on

If you'd like some help in getting press releases out for your company, then contact me today for a consultation.