What is a press release or news release?
Definition: A public relations announcement issued to the news media and other targeted publications for the purpose of letting the public know of company development.
In a phrase: press releases aren’t just for the media anymore. Under traditional definitions and practice, press releases were a formal document designed to communicate to the public through the media. Releases were rarely seen by the public – rather the output of the press release was shown in the form of news coverage.
Though there are still a number of old school PR pros that can remember mailing or faxing press releases, for the most part, the web changed the paradigm. Press releases published on the web allowed organizations to communicate directly with their audiences, be that consumers, other businesses, or investors.
In fact, PRWeb was quick to seize on this idea, and one of the key points of differentiating from traditional press release distribution services is that PRWeb was designed for the web, rather than being built on a proprietary network designed to deliver news to a newsroom. PRWeb pioneered the concept of direct-to-consumer news.
As the technology for web publishing has grown, so too has the ability to include multimedia content along with a release. No longer are releases relegated to just static text, rather releases can include pictures – a 1,000 words – and video. In fact, primary research by PRWeb indicates releases that include multimedia can increase time on page by as much as 30 seconds – which is an amazing period of time on the web.
Why use a press release?
1.) The obvious, to “reach the masses”
Most companies write press releases with the goal of it being picked up by other publications, journalists, bloggers, etc.
As you read above, press releases have changed dramatically, and the most common press release is now sent via the internet.
As with any blog post, article, whatever, if you are thinking about writing your own press release, including videos and images will increase its “success”.
When journalists, bloggers, readers, etc are looking for additional information about a company or product- what do they do? They “Google it”. Press releases include all of the basic information about your company or product in one place. Press releases are seen as a “good source” for quality information.
Whether you have customers sharing information about your company or you have journalists or bloggers “speaking” about your brand- press releases re-iterate your company’s message. It will help others share about your product or service with consistency.