5 PR Tactics to Manage Company Press Releases
When you come back from vacation, despite having left an away message on your email, you will probably still have a swamp of messages awaiting your reply. For many reporters, this happens all the time; most get more emails every day than they could ever have the time to respond.
If your company wants your PR firm to put out a certain number of press releases each month, you risk damaging your reputation with the media outlets. Remember that sending out too many news releases hurts rather than helps your PR efforts. Instead of sending out a certain number of releases each month, follow these tips.
1. Only send select content to reporters.
When it comes to grow your company’s media coverage, sometimes less is more. This is especially true when you have good quality information. Instead of a weekly press release, focus your efforts on just one, or at most, two, really decent, information-packed releases each month.
Another thing to keep in mind is that unless your company or brand is well-known, the media outlets aren’t likely to cover weekly news from you.
2. Keep press releases simple and engaging for readers.
Always follow the inverted pyramid format for news releases. You will want to have a catchy headline, maybe a subheading, and the lead paragraph needs to earn your readers’ attention. Include facts like the who, what, where, when, why, and how of your news.
The body of the release should hold quotes, background info, and any key statistics. Separate multiple quotes by a transitional sentence and any other relevant information.
End the release with a boilerplate, which is one or two paragraphs that describe your company and your services or products.
3. Quality is more important than quantity.
Any press release should fulfill at least one, and preferably more, of the 10 elements of news. These are proximity, prominence, timeliness, oddity, consequence, conflict. human interest, extremes or superlatives, scandal, and impact. Following these guidelines will ensure that your news is actually newsworthy. If it doesn’t, then it isn’t worth putting out a news release.
4. Ensure the releases go to the right reporter.
A lot of times, businesses reach out the wrong person when sharing exciting news. This will result in the reporter trashing your email without even reading it, or even putting it about that your company isn’t credible. Even more important than the tip not to inundate reporters is to not do it to the wrong reporter!
5. Keep the reporters informed.
Even though you shouldn’t require a certain number of press releases from your public relations firm every month, you definitely should keep them informed of company news, both big and small. You may not think something is newsworthy or worth the release, but it might just be the thing that could go viral. Allow your PR experts to do their job and decide what is newsworthy.
If you are trying to earn coverage for your brand, below are additional tips to help improve your media relationships and grow your coverage:
- Build relationships with reporters. You can engage the relevant journalists on social media. Make pitches to social media editors, but don’t ask or rely them on favours.
- Call reporters for permission before you send them press releases. Don’t just think about news releases; instead, focus on the quality of your media relationships. Also, limit your media releases.
- Go for the perfect press release quote that provides insight. Learn from past news releases. Think about submitting press releases to your local media. Study the outlets where you want coverage, and know what they publish and who their editors are there. Use editorial calendars. There’s no point sending a press release to a magazine that works three months in advance.
- Build your brand, with or without advertising. Only use paid media as a last resort.