Most of today’s business professionals are well aware of the benefits of marketing on sites like Facebook and Twitter. But with the rise of social media and blogging, the power of the press release seems to have gotten the cold shoulder. If you’re looking to boost traffic to your website and improve your business, don’t overlook the positive impact that online press releases can have.

What Is a Press Release?

A press release announces something newsworthy happening at your business, such as a new hire, a new product or service, or an event that you recently attended or sponsored. For example, a payment processing company might write a press release about its new credit card machines for small business merchants. A provider of GPS tracking devices could announce the launch of its new software designed to track trucks and fleets.

Why Press Releases?

Letting the public know what your business is up to is a great way to increase company visibility. By syndicating your press release through online distribution outlets, you also have the opportunity to increase traffic to your company website through strategically-placed SEO keywords and links within the copy. As your press release is picked up and distributed by news sources across the Web, these linked keywords can help improve your search engine rankings and get your website, and your business, noticed.

Press Release Tips

The most effective press releases are the ones that are well-written, utilize highly-searched keywords and focus on interesting, newsworthy topics. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your press release:

  • Find newsworthy topics. Your press release should announce something that is important to your company. If there is nothing new going on, you can make something happen: Offer an online discount to announce and promote through your press release, or start supporting a local nonprofit organization. The need to create newsworthy topics can help motivate your company to get involved in the community and become more active within your business and industry.
  • Write strong headlines. The headline is often the only part of your content that will show up on news pages across the Web – readers will have to click through to read the entire content. That means your headline must be compelling enough to grab readers’ attention at a single glance.
  • Use keywords. Google Keyword Tool is a basic keyword research tool that can help you determine popular phrases within your industry. If you want more in-depth analysis, there are Internet marketing agencies everywhere, including SEO firms, that specialize in finding the right keywords for your unique business. Once you’ve got the keywords, place them strategically throughout the press release. The headline, subhead and body should include relevant keywords that are linked back to your website.
  • Take advantage of social media. Once your press release is written and syndicated, you can use social media to help it garner even more attention. The more your press release is shared on Twitter and Facebook, the better.

Publishing online press releases on a regular basis ensures that your offsite links and content remain fresh, which is a big plus for search engines. Are you using press releases to improve your business? Any success stories or tips to share? We’d love to hear them!