Then, the widespread use of the Internet came around and disrupted this process for marketers. Sure, a news story about a brand was still highly beneficial, but press releases evolved into content that was more geared toward search engine optimization (SEO) value. Brands would create press releases, distribute them through an online service and reap the SEO benefits of having those releases, complete with backlinks, appear on numerous sites across the web.
Over the past couple of years, however, Google and the other search engines have adjusted their algorithms to reduce the SEO effectiveness of the press release—although there is still much value to be gained through creating and distributing a release when your brand has news to share.
The following are a few reasons why you shouldn’t abandon press releases as part of your digital and content marketing strategy:
- They establish legitimacy: The format of a press release and media outlets on which they are published offer the legitimacy you simply cannot create out of a single article, piece of blog content or even a white paper. When you distribute a press release online, it gets picked up by a number of traditional and digital news outlets. Having your release published in these outlets increases the potential for exposure and gives your brand some added weight in the eyes of consumers.
- They create steady news: People want to know that your brand is active and, at least in some way, committed to growth. When used on a semi-regular basis to announce a hiring, expansions, promotions, achievements and new products and services, you can create a steady stream of news that you can share with your readers.
- They are versatile: Although the main purpose of press releases is to deliver newsworthy content to reporters and editors, you may also use them to send to local organizations and businesses to keep them in the loop about what your business has to offer. You may also use them both digitally and in print mailers without having to do any repurposing—something that’s much more difficult to do with other types of content.
- They appeal to certain audiences: If your target customers or clients are of a more old-school crowd or are the types of people be checking the newswire for industry news, well-written press releases can help you appeal to those audiences in a more direct way.
In short, there’s still plenty of room for the press release in our contemporary, content marketing-driven world. When you have news to share with your readers and customers, we encourage you to consider working with a press release writer to get that news out there.