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Often the first step in a PR strategy is publishing a press release. For years, this was also one of the most efficient ways to make a company and its message known. Nowadays, however, press releases are genuinely effective, mainly in combination with other marketing strategies. We explain the advantages and disadvantages of press releases.
Press releases help journalists and editors to verify information about your company. The goal is also that journalists report on the content of the press release and thus become aware of your company. This article shows the pros and cons and how you can use press releases for your business in terms of marketing. We address the following questions:
- What is a press release or press copy?
- Why a press release?
- What is the goal of a press release?
- How is a press release structured?
- What are the advantages and disadvantages?
Definition: What Is A Press Release Or A Press Text?
The press release is a public relations tool. Here, messages from companies, institutions, PR agencies, or members of the public are forwarded to the press. The aim here is to increase the public perception and reach of a company through editorial coverage in the media.
The Advantages And Disadvantages Of A Press Release At A Glance
Anyone thinking about using a press release as a marketing tool should know the advantages and disadvantages of using the device for exemplary purposes. Here are some of the benefits of using a press release.
1. Low Cost
Producing a press release usually costs less than other press relations tools. Only the working time of the person who creates the press release has to be paid here. Sending it to important press representatives is free of charge. There is also no charge for placing the release in trade media. So if you only take a look at the costs, a press release in marketing is worthwhile in any case.
2. Increase Awareness
A press release can ensure that the relevant media regularly report on your company. This, in turn, leads to increased awareness within one’s target group. In addition, this can also increase the reputation of the relevant media representatives. If you regularly provide exciting information pertinent to press members, they will notice after a while that they turn to you on their own to get new news about the company. However, this may take some time.
3. Mention In Other Publications
A press release aims to make new information about your company known to as many people as possible. Therefore, many companies already achieve their goal by sending the release to many publications that publish it in various online articles. Other media that then read this press release also have the opportunity to publish it in their reports. This way, you can achieve a lot with relatively little effort.
4. Link Building
Apart from the increase of the admittingness, the spreading of press releases also brings the advantage that one can operate so Linkbuilding. Because if an article appears online in which one’s own company is reported, there is always a link to one’s website. The press release should therefore contain keywords through which they are found in the search. As soon as other journalists read the release, they may pick it up and incorporate it into their articles.
The disadvantages should be addressed too. In the following, we show you, therefore, which general disadvantages a press release can have.
1. No Communication With Consumers
Although it is good when a press release arouses a journalist’s interest, the same can be true for your target group. After all, consumers like to read the information that is easy to understand and preferably short and to the point. Press releases are often quite long texts, which are only sometimes directly understandable for everyone because they are mainly written for journalists.
2. Difficult Measurability
Whether a marketing measure was successful or not is best proven by numbers and data. However, in the case of press releases, it is often complicated to measure success by numbers. It is difficult to determine how many users have accessed the release on a website and how many journalists have written about it.
3. No Guarantee For Publicity
Even if you have written an outstanding press release and sent it to many journalists, there is no guarantee that a journalist will include it in an article. Sometimes the timing is not suitable for a release, or the target audience needs to be completely the right one. So you always have to reckon that the release will not make it into an article and the work will have been in vain.
4. SEO Improvement Is Only Slight
Link building can, as mentioned before, lead to SEO improvement. However, more than press releases is required to achieve a real improvement. This is because the releases are only published online for a while and are eventually deleted again. Therefore, they also disappear very quickly on the pages of search engines.
The Structure Of A Press Release
If you decide to publish a press release, you should also know how it is structured. Standards have been established in this area. The structure can look as follows:
- Headline: Apt and not too long
- Place and date
- Say the most important thing right at the beginning
- Preface or introduction: The most critical W-questions should be answered here.
- Middle section: Space for details and background information; gladly mention numbers and names.
- Information about the company and contact details
- Note: Only one DIN A4 page.
A press release can be a helpful marketing tool. However, one should approach the text with reasonable expectations. Often it is more worthwhile to use the release in combination with other marketing tools to achieve the best effect.