Using Online Press Releases to Promote Your Small Business

By: Brian Horn on: March 31st, 2010 12 Comments

The press release has long been the staple of PR campaigns. Although it is still a powerful tool, you need to adapt it for search engine optimization (SEO) for online publicity campaigns.

There are many services that will distribute your press release online. Some free, some paid. Both work.

The best free one (in this Texas boy’s humble opinion) is PRLog.com. Just create an account and you can send press releases for free.

Depending on the package chosen and what it contains, prices of these press release delivery services will vary, but in general press distribution services will range from totally free to as high as $700.

Obviously the free ones will not give you as much exposure as the seven hundred dollar kind. Usually, the free ones will get you at most, online visibility, which will allow your company to appear at the top of the list in major search engines like Google or Yahoo.

The middle ground is usually where most clients opt to land. Mid range options will go from $150 to roughly $400. These packages give you good value for your money, as most of these mid range packages included print and online visibility, distribution to a long list of journalists and newsrooms as well as search engine optimization.

Top dollar will still give you the best distribution services. Those who don’t want to leave anything to chance and really want to make sure that they will get the best press release distribution possible will usually opt for this kind of distribution package.

You will get the most SEO benefit from your release by using keywords throughout your press release–words and phrases that people use when doing a search.

Some keywords are searched more often than others. Those that have the highest number of searches also have the most competition for people’s attention and top search engine placement.

You want to distribute your keywords throughout your press release. You should use one phrase in the headline, one in the first paragraph and several throughout the body of the release. You don’t want to go crazy it and stack the keywords so heavy that it doesn’t read naturally though. Sprinkle some here and there so that they seem, and are, an organic part of the release.

The keywords should also relate in some way to your website and business. After all, what good is SEO if the keywords don’t relate to your business?

In other words, if you’re a dentist, don’t write a press release full of keywords about the latest tax code.

So how do you find the best keywords to use? Start with Google’s free keyword tool. Just type in some keywords and Google will tell you how many searches there are for each of them and suggest some others for you to consider.

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    ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

    Brian Horn, of HornDog Search Marketing, is recognized by many as the "Glazer-Kennedy Secret Weapon", because of his role in helping not only Dan Kennedy and Bill Glazer with search engine optimization and social media, but also many of the top Information Marketers in the world. Brian shares SEO tips for small businesses over at at his blog, BeOnPage1Blog.com.

    12 Responses

    1. Thanks for the reminder, Brian. I need to get busy using Press Releases much more in my marketing.

    2. Rob Anspach says:

      …just interviewed Lisa Manyon (of Write On Creative Writing Services) for my “Passions to Profits” series and she also revealed (spilled the beans) on using press releases to gain free publicity. It’s a great tool that very few companies take advantage of, but the ones that do… Watch out, they get a ton of publicity.

    3. Charles Ra says:

      You want to distribute your keywords throughout your press release. You should use one phrase in the headline, one in the first paragraph and several throughout the body of the release.
      Start with Google’s free keyword tool. Just type in some keywords and Google will tell you how many searches there are for each of them and suggest some others for you to consider.
      accurate steps, practical advice, thank you Brian

    4. John Bruin says:

      This is a fine article on why to use press releases, but can someone suggest a good site to learn how to write a PR?

    5. The AIDA Formula can be used successfully in PR just like in copywriting…just make sure the pitch is interesting to the reporter and reader and is serving them and not self-serving!

      no one buy you want to read a PR about YOU….

      the easiest way: think of some current event angles (Political, Financial, Calendar related) and tie it in with your product or service…

      do something zany or interesting and it will go a long way to getting you PR.

    6. Excellent post Brian. chock full of great stuff as you always do so superbly!

      Look for terms that you want to be seen for. If you have a car wash in HornDog Alabama, it would be foolish to even try to get “up top” for the words “car wash”.

      but “HornDog Alabama car wash” would get you a much better shot at targeting your target market and getting seen by local journalists and consumers.

      “HornDog Alabama car wash offers bubble gum scented shampoo for 5 cents” might get read and picked up by the local paper… hmm?

      Brian- Gotta love the name of that town in Alabama :)

    7. Charles Ra says:

      The AIDA Formula can be used successfully in PR just like in copywriting
      I agree, Issamar, AIDA is a basic principle that works great

    8. AIDA =

      Get their Attention, so that they read what you have to say

      Peak their Interest, so that what they are reading makes them read further on in

      Make them Desire the item you are selling in depth; and then

      Give them Action to do to fulfill the want that you have just magnified.

    9. Rob Anspach says:

      Aida works her butt off to get you free publicity with press releases!

    10. […] Using Online Press Releases to Promote Your Small Business This is a strategy that we have been using with our clients for a while now and it works GREAT! This strategy not only helps to show your credentials and 3rd party verification of who you are and what you do, but also is an EASY and VERY affective backlinking strategy! It’s an absolutely MUST in my book! Read more. […]

    11. John: Check out Lisa Manyon’s website (the expert Rob mentioned). You can also do a Google search for “How To Write A Press Release” — you’ll find hundreds of helpful articles, blog posts, websites, etc.

    12. Rob Anspach says:

      @Steve – Lisa is also a GKIC member.

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