This guest post is by Frank Strong of PRWeb.
Writing good content for a blog is only half of the equation: promoting your blog to drive traffic is the other half.
Previously we offered five reasons to promote your blog with press releases as part of an overall content marketing strategy. This post provides a few tips on how to write a press release for maximum media exposure.
1. Create compelling headlines.
Should you use a sexy headline that attracts eyeballs or a headline stuffed with keywords for search? We’ve always found that people read content, not search engines, so while it’s important to include keywords in your headline where possible, only use them when they make sense in context.
Just like the subject line of an email invites a recipient to open a message, headlines should compel a reader to consume your content.
2. Draw the reader in with the lead.
The first sentence of the body—the lead—should compel the viewer to keep reading (think: time-on-page). Traditional PR pros will tell you to write using an inverted pyramid, where the content flows top down and the first paragraph explains the five Ws: the who, what, when, where and why.
There’s nothing wrong with that, however, we think the use of press releases has evolved, where they once were primarily used to provide a news hook to the media in order to reach an audience, they now can also reach that audience directly.
As such, in some cases, the press release is the story and the better performing releases (in terms of page reads) we’ve seen read like the story—complete with a powerful lead.
3. Use anchor text links.
It’s a fundamental, but often overlooked, point: anchor text links are pivotal! Be sure to hyperlink your keywords to pages on your blog that are optimized for the same key words.
This ensures that when press release syndication network distributes the content, your keywords are still hyperlinked to the content you’re promoting. Once again, people read content, so ensure that the keywords make sense in the structure and flow of your copy.
4. Include a powerful call to action.
You’ve written a release with compelling headlines and copy that drew the reader in. Now, what action would you like people to take? Invite them to take that action. For many blogs, this would be to visit the blog, subscribe via RSS, or sign up for email alerts on new posts.
5. Choose a strong press release topic.
Stuck for press release ideas? We have a list of hot topics for press releases. When you’re coming up with an idea, the trick is to think like a PR pro—what about your blog, personal life, or business could you see being picked up by the mainstream media? What is the “remarkable” story you have to share?
While those are big-ticket themes, a more tactical approach would be to publish a release about your most popular posts—the top ten of the year, or the five most read every quarter (or month if you’re a prolific blogger). Your release content should focus on the trend. For example, why are readers consuming those specific posts?
For further reading on creating great press releases, try:
- PRWeb Picks: Five Releases we Love this Month
- Use News Releases for More Than PR
- 5 Tips to Optimize Your News Release for New Media
- News Flash! Press Releases Aren’t Just for the Media Anymore
- PR pros should write for search engines
Have you used a press release to promote your post? What tips can you add to this list?
Frank Strong is director of public relations for PRWeb.