7 Tools to Write the Perfect Press Release

Are you writing your own press releases? Do you believe in DIY? Then, when you start your journey, add all these secret weapons in your arsenal: a good headline analyzer, a professional keyword analysis tool, a good social-media-release-building application, and a few other tricks of the trade, to ensure great exposure for your news.

If you write press releases in a delusional belief that the links you embed in their content bring you SEO advantages, stop right here. This is not for you. If you, however, are a small business, and need to save a buck or two on copyrighting (not that I encourage the practice, but talent has its perks), the following tools will help you create a press release like a pro.

Titles, Always Titles

Titles are micro-content, and your best bet to grab attention. They should address both journalists and consumers, and they should “sell” the news from the start. The art of writing attention grabbing titles has been dissected and discussed by countless of experts – all you need to do is to google “how to write titles” and you’ll get thousands of results, all offering pertinent, excellent advice. Since I am not discussing the “how” here’s the tool that could help your titles spark: the headline analyzer by the Advanced Marketing Institute.

Keywords – for Market Research, not SEO

When it comes to researching keywords, I always go with SEMrush, because it gives me a bit of insight in what competitors might be doing to rank. Aside showing a phrase match report, SEMrush reveals the top related keywords, and the best performers in organic search engine results. When you know their strengths, you know how to defeat them, and even if your victory is short lived – as news have a short lifespan in the SERPs – it is still a victory.

semrush

A Professional PR Platform

PitchEngine is a great PR platform, albeit not free. But their plans are affordable, an the tools provided make any beginner look like an expert. From news release creation, to collaboration and content management, PitchEngine has got it all, enabling you to create and push content on any device, from desktops to smartphone and tablets.

A Good PR Toolkit

PR Newswire, together with Yahoo! Small Business Advisor, have the best press release toolkit available – with free access – and a great press release wizard that walks you through all the steps required to create a professional-style press release. This instead of a standard press release template.

A Content Checker Tool

What I like about Dupli Checker is that it allows you to actually paste the content you want checked, instead of an URL. This is an excellent tool to check texts provided to you by third parties, but also to see similar content to the one produced by you.

Good Distribution

If writing may be free, distribution should always be paid. Free press release distribution sites are a waste of time – no self respecting journalist even considers them as a source. The best distribution sites are, naturally, more expensive. But iReach from PR Newswire is a great tool for small businesses on a budget. The only downside is that it is only available for businesses in the US and Canada.

A Leg in Where the Pro Jurnos Mingle

When you distribute your news via services like iReach, or PRWeb, BusinessWire and so on, the journalists may or may not pick it up, depending on a variety of factors (and their own moods). But when you use HARO-like tools, you could score great media mentions for your business, even without hiring a PR pro to pitch them.

Now that you have the tools, do you still believe that your copywriting skills are enough to make your future press releases stand out? If you do, you’ve just saved a little fortune on press release writing. Just remember:Press Releases Are Not a PR Strategy and sometimes, no matter how talented you are, the scrutiny of a PR pro may mean the difference between success and a PR crisis.

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Comments

  1. says

    “Free press release distribution sites are a waste of time – no self respecting journalist even considers them as a source”. This is true in general but there are a few sites which stand out. For example pr.com, prweb.com used to be free but now it is not free. 24-7 press release is also good. That is why we have compiled a list of free PR sites which can be ranked by important metrics like traffic, facebook likes and page rank. See this sortable list of free PR sites. http://www.pressreleasepoint.com/paid-and-free-press-release-site-list

    • Mihaela Butler says

      Traffic to those sites, you mean, their own FB likes, and not likes they may generate for those who submit the press release, and page rank? These are only metrics that matter for the sites you listed, and not for the business owners who submit press releases. There is no benefit in using such sites.

    • Mihaela Butler says

      Glad to hear you are working on the new edition, Linda! I will buy it when it comes out. Although the use was accidental, it only shows what impact the book had way back when. A great title sticks, doesn’t it? I will link to your book! People should definitely read it

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