PR Steps for Generating Customers with Marc Harty
Marc Hartley has in the past run an SEO firm, performed pay-per-click management for clients, and he has a background in copy writing. His experience gives him a unique angle on the common press release.
According to Marc, PR has evolved since it’s come onto the web. "Press releases" are no longer just dull digests of a company’s recent activities -- they are important tools for search engine marketing and attracting new customers to your website. Marc believes that press releases should deliver a benefit to the reader, not just the same old collection of dull, dry facts, like "Oh, we have a new product", or "Hey, we made this number of sales last year.
With the advent of web PR, you no longer have to rely on the media for getting your press release out there, since you can submit your own press releases to various sites yourself and have it broadcast on the internet. You could start getting search engine traffic as a result of your press release within minutes of submitting it! This definitely changes how we think about and use our press releases.
Don’t take common discussions on the proper form and content for press releases as gospel when you’re publishing them on the internet. The internet gives you the freedom to be more creative. An idea might be to piggyback your press releases onto things that are happening in the news, so that they seem timely and relevant. Another idea is to use controversy to your advantage: The example is talk-radio -- built entirely on controversy. Inject a little controversy into your press releases and you’ll find they spread further.
Even if you don’t have your own product, there’s no reason why you can’t do press releases. Affiliates are in the enviable position of having lots of products to write press releases about -- unlike a normal business that has to find a new way to spin the same product again and again. Another important thing to realize is that you shouldn’t just be submitting press releases when something momentous happens in your business. You should be doing them regularly. The great thing with press releases is that they stay on the web and they continue to appear in search engines, continue to send traffic your way for years. Compare this with traditional press, where your release might be read one day but will have disappeared by the next. Since this is the case, it makes sense to be sending out as many press releases as you can reasonably justify.
7 Steps to standing out from the competition
- You need a hook: Controversy is a great hook -- Just look at who is making it big in the entertainment news -- always someone who has done or said something controversial. Or try finding a way to tie your press release to something that’s happening in the news. One example of a good hook is the story of the "underdog" overcoming obstacles to come out tops, or defeating the much larger competition.
- Create lists: Lists break information down into easy to digest nuggets that
appeal greatly to readers.
For instance: 10 things you should know about _____, 5 things you should do to ________,
How to ________ in 6 easy steps. These are considerably different to traditional press releases, but they work!
- Establish credibility and proof.
- Find a solution to a problem: Don’t just state the obvious. Find a problem being experienced by your market, and explain how the problem can be relieved by your product. Look at the sales material provided by the company whose product you’re promoting -- most good sales copy builds on the " problem/solution" idea. You can take inspiration from this material and tweak it into a press release.
- Mention your keywords in your article. Most press releases are still hung up on the traditional format for press releases. That is, they haven’t been optimized for the search engines. So here’s a fantastic opportunity for you to jump ahead of everyone else -- SEO your press release! Incorporate your affiliate link, but mask it so that’s it’s not your long, horrible affiliate link. Consider your link and keyword placement. Use your keywords.
- Give your readers breathing space. Allow people to consume the information visually. Keep your paragraphs short. Bulletpoint your information. Most people will just scan the press release, so make it easier for people to do that.
- Provide a call to action! Nine out of ten of the calls to action you see in press releases are simply "visit our website or call our number." Boring! Try giving out a special bonus or report instead. Offer the first chapter of your eBook. Give your reader some value that ties back to the problem you’re talking about solving in your press release.
Marc Harty offers a step-by-step course with video lessons, CDs, workbooks, and cheat sheets covering everything to do with PR on the web, connecting the dots between PR, publicity, traffic creation and traffic conversion. For more information, visit http://www.PRTraffic.com