Are you getting your brand featured in the news? Many companies off load this marketing tasks to PR experts and agencies, like us. The benefits of having a PR specialist are that they have often built up their media contacts over time and have inside knowledge into the type of content that the publications want and the way that they want it structured.
However if you are a start up or just testing the water you may want to issue your own press releases and there is nothing stopping you. Here are 6 common mistakes to avoid if you planning your own PR campaigns:
- Missed Submission deadline
Respecting the journalists time and resources is crucial when you are reaching out to them. Remember that you are just one of the many hundreds of emails that journalists receive each day. Learn the dates and times of deadlines for the publications that you wish to connect with and be sure to submit your articles in advance. If you miss the deadline not only will your press release not make it into the publication, the journalist mightn’t even open your email and then all of your hard work goes down the drain.
2. Not reading the submission guidelines
Publications and online news websites that have built up a regular readership will have submission guidelines to follow. These will either be published on their site or available if you ask nicely. Be sure to read these guidelines carefully and understand the format that the journalist will expect to see when they open your release.
3. Reproducing articles in several publications
Like all newsworthy content, you need to have a unique angle. Often individuals and agencies will blast out press releases to every contact they have in the hope that somebody will pick it up. Unless you are a celebrity with some amazing goss then you need to be careful and put the work in. Journalists within the same industry know each other well and you don’t want to end up with a bad name. Segment your media contacts by level of importance and reach out to them accordingly.
4. Press release not suitable for the publication
This follows on nicely from point 3. If you don’t spend time tailoring your message for the different publications you may end up sending articles that are irrelevant to the readers. This is a waste of your time and the editors time as should have researched the readership in advance of sending the release.
5. Poor content quality
Content is king and this is especially true in the news world. Journalists often have creative writing and technical writing backgrounds. Poor quality writing, punctuation or grammer may frustrate a journalist so try to keep any errors to a minimum. The best advice is to always have two to three other people read your press release before you send it.
6. No contact details included
This may seem obvious but sometimes the most obvious things that we need to remember are the easiest to forget. Always include detailed contact information at the bottom of your press release. Include a contact name, email address, telephone number and website.
If you would like more PR tips or help avoiding PR mistakes please reach out to us.