Part Six - Distributing Your Press Release
Now that you have your press kit it’s time to do your research and begin pitching to the media.
You can submit your press release to the media either through email or through the postal service.
You can pay to have your press release distributed for you but you don’t have to!
Jennifer Mattern at nakedpr.com says… It’s not impossible (or even hard) to distribute your press release on your own, especially if you’re trying to save money.
In light of that fact, I’ve put together a list of 5 easy steps you can follow for more effective free press release distribution:
- Choose one or two free press release distribution sites (any more than 3-5 is just a waste of your time, assuming it’s worth anything). Choose based on which ones will get the release added to news engines. Just because some bigger distribution sites (who will remain nameless) charge an arm and a leg for this service, not all do. For example, PR.com’s free option will pretty much always get your release picked up in Google News (I’ve never had it fail yet). Now you’re available via search… yippie!
- Send it to the Associated Press. It never hurts to try, and if they deem your release newsworthy enough to pick up, you just might get some decent “real” media coverage out of it. Just email or fax the release to the appropriate editor, writer, or regional bureau depending on your location and news.
- Send it to your local newspaper or other media with a local spin on it. It won’t take more than a few minutes for you to add a local spin to the intro and / or headline of the press release. Send it to the most relevant journalist or editor at your local paper. Smaller papers especially eat that stuff up when a local is doing anything remotely newsworthy. Try to build a relationship with the editor or writer whenever possible while you’re at it.
- Send it directly to niche or industry outlets. If you know of the top blogs, magazines, or websites in your niche, see if they have press release submission guidelines, and submit it directly to them. Don’t just assume they’ll find you through Google news or a press release distribution site. Work on the bigger ones first, and submit to as many as you have time for. If you get bigger pickups, they’ll often lead to smaller niche blogs and such copycatting the story anyway. Again, try to build relationships if you can.
- Add your press releases to your own website or blog. Why is this so often ignored or neglected? Some clients complain when I suggest it, saying “well, I don’t want duplicate content on my site.” Well, if you give a damn about promoting your site, get the f*ing releases up there and quit whining about duplicate content! Who the hell cares about duplicate content? Maybe it’s just me, but I thought the purpose of a press release was to bring exposure. It can’t do that if you sit on it. On top of putting the news out to your regular readers, customers, or visitors, it also allows you to archive your releases for journalists who visit the site wanting to learn more about your company or site history. If you don’t have a press room or at least a press release archive, ADD ONE!!! And when it’s on your site, you can take that opportunity to add all the little social media tools and gizmos that your heart desires, add commenting (especially if it’s on a blog), or frankly do whatever gets you off in the moment. Add it to del.icio.us. Digg it. Do whatever the hell you want with it. Just publish the thing, and be done with it already! Why people refuse to grasp this concept is just beyond me. It’s easy… promise.
The BIG list of free press release distribution sites as provided by nakedpr.com:
I hope this mini series was helpful to get you started on Self-Publishing and that I was able to provide you with some useful resources. I may pick this series back up so check back!