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Writing Press Releases – Your Questions, Answered!

Why do I need to send press releases?
To get seen by reporters, prospects, lawmakers, influencers and search engines. Press releases can be a great way to get more visitors to your website so you can make more sales.

Why is it news/newsworthy to send out a press release if I’ve just written a personal development book? It’s not tied to any current news event. It’s seems like it’s just a promotion for me and it seems like it would look like that in the eyes of the reporters as well.
Yes, it is a promotion for you, but a very targeted promotion. No one cares that a book was printed. They care about the content of the book. So you can write a press release that shows people how to benefit from a portion of your book, i.e. how to reduce stress, how to motivate employees effectively, how to save money on your taxes. That is what people want to read. The other point is that our press releases can help more people find you via the search engines, as well as via the media sites. So even though you aren’t a celebrity and your book is not news, a press release can still have value in marketing you, your book and your website.

Why are search engines important for press releases? I thought I just needed to send press releases to reporters.
Many of your potential clients and buyers look to search engines to find companies like yours. If they read about your company in a press release that was printed on a media site, you will benefit from the branding of that publication.  For many people, search engines are the first place they look to find new businesses. If you aren’t easily found, you will lose business.

I’ve never written a press release. Can you write one for me?
Yes. Choose the Gold package.

I’ve written press releases but I don’t know anything about search engine optimization. Can you just do that part for me?
Yes. Choose the Silver package.

I know what I’m doing in terms of writing a press release and SEO can you just send out the press release?
Yes. Choose the Bronze package.

Can I hire someone on Elance to write a press release?
Yes, just be sure they know what they are doing and that American or Canadian English is their first language. Non-native speakers can make embarrassing mistakes that no spell checker or grammar checker could catch.

Can I write the release and have you look it over?
Yes. If you choose the Bronze package, we will review your press release for style. If you choose the Silver package, we will copy edit the press release and add search engine optimization.

Do you send the press release to bloggers and social media sites?

Yes. We send the press release to bloggers who have asked to receive press releases in their subject area.

How long can a press release be?
Other services limit your word count to about 400 words before they tack on extra charges. We allow 750 words including the press release, headline and contact information. Not sure what you mean by “including the press release, headline” Do you mean, “including the press release headline” If so, just take out the comma between release and headline.

Can I promote my services in a press release?

Yes. Press releases are promotional tools. But be careful that the press release doesn’t look or sound like a sales letter. No one will want to read it.

Can I put links, hyperlinks and anchor text into a press release?
Yes.

How many links can I put into a press release?
The rule of thumb is one link for every 100 words. Don’t put too many links too closely together because it just looks bad to the eye.

Will reporters call me and do another story if their web site prints the press release?

No. Why would they want to write about the same exact topic twice? That doesn’t make sense. You’ve told your story in your exact words. What could be better than that?

Is a press release better than an article the reporter writes?
Both are good. With a press release, you get to tell your story in your exact words and you can frame the story as you want it to appear. When a reporter writes a story, she could include your comments, then call your arch competitor and include his comments saying his stuff is better than your stuff. Then she could call an analyst who says that another company has even better stuff. In other words, you lose control of the story when a reporter writes it. Press releases could give you a better way to tell your story.

What is a good topic for a press release?
Anything new is a good topic. For example, a new product, a new service or a new book. Announcements of honors and awards are also good. You can promote your speaking engagements so future prospects see you as a thought leader and industry expert.  You can even turn good articles into press releases.

Can I turn an article into a press release?
Yes. Articles can be good for an “information” based marketing campaign that can position you as a thought leader or an industry expert.

Can I turn an article I’ve written into a press release?

Yes. Turning your article into a press release gives you another way to leverage your intellectual property. You can distribute your article-press release to the media and to the search engines in an effort to improve your ranking on the search engines.  Also, when people read the press release, they will realize they are learning something and they will think highly of you. You’ll establish your position as a though leader. This is a very good part of an information-based selling strategy.

Can I put in pictures or videos?
You can put in links to pictures or videos to any location on the Internet, such as your website or YouTube.

Will one press release make a big difference to me?
Yes. Many of our clients have seen dramatic improvements in their search engine results after just one press release. You can also brag that you’ve been quoted in more than 40 media sites after sending just one press release. However, for long-term results, you should plan on sending a press release each month.

How many press releases should I send out each month?
You should budget for sending one press release a month if you are a small business.

Where can I get ideas for press releases?
Look at your competitors’ press releases for additional ideas. Also read your industry trade journals to see what topics are hot. Write about those trends and ideas. You can write your opinion in a press release as well. There’s no end of opportunities. If you are stuck, you can brainstorm with us.

Writing press releases looks easy. Could I do this on my own?
If you have a background in PR or journalism, you probably can. If not, then consider letting us do it for you. If writing press releases and optimizing them for the search engines were easy, there wouldn’t be a need for this business.

Can I use a template of a press release I found on the Internet?
Yes.

If I send a press release to a reporter, will she print it? After all, isn’t that what they are paid to do?
No. Reporters get many more press releases than they can ever use. Getting a reporter to write a story based on a press release is actually pretty difficult. That’s why our guaranteed press release program gives you more chances for success than you could get on your own.

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