A press release still means the same thing it meant a decade ago. However, now with SEO and social media changing the rules of the game, there are more ways to get your press-worthy event or product launch out there than there used to be.

A press release is a marketing communications tool that organizations use to get newsworthy information out to the media or public to potential customers.

What many people don’t realize is this: The press release can be a way to help boost search visibility for your website. You can then accomplish two things in one stroke.

First, get the news out there about the new product launch or event.

Second, build traffic on your website along with it.

While the press release in itself hasn’t changed much it’s potential role and impact is much wider.

First, however…

Avoid the temptation to “spray and pray” or “throw the seeds everywhere”

Imagine that you were in the middle of a job search, and you don’t want to spend too much time online, which is a good thing. For each job application or message, you use the exact same cover letter, only changing the name it’s addressed to. Efficient right? You just tweak the name and send it off everywhere. Have you ever done this?

That’s “Spray and Pray”. In order to be efficient, you decide to use the exact same message to copy and paste, only after just changing the name on it. You could probably zip through a lot more people that way than to think and write up a message each time.

Sure it’s fast, and you get a lot of messages sent out to a lot more people. But, as you might have guessed, it’s sloppy, thoughtless, and lazy – even. And it probably won’t be effective. Apply for jobs this way and you’re lucky to get a response at all.

Where press releases are concerned, this approach has been common with organizations that broadcast press releases far and wide, using mass email, and press wires for maximum exposure and impact. It has worked in the past.

But fast forward a few years to now, it’s simply not effective anymore.

The takeaway? There is no magic shortcut.

The exact same principle applies to press outreach. It’s far more effective to send a press release directly to a reporter after cultivating a relationship with them rather than blast them off to other newspaper editors in an email.

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