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March 31, 2016
We have recently written a couple of articles about "Content Marketing and Your Press Release. Is it a Strategy or a Gimmick?" and "Tailor Your Content Marketing Strategy to Retain Your Existing Customers."
Incorporating press releases into your content marketing strategy has started to become a common practice in the world of content marketing. Through our channels of research, we continue to see an abundance of articles mentioning content marketing and incorporating that content within a press release. It's an interesting thought, indeed, and one that seems to make perfect sense, as long as the content is newsworthy to your audience.
One article of interest that we recently came across had a unique infographic whereby the very first 'ingredient' for content marketing was labeled "Industry News." Combine 3 parts fresh news, 1 part spicy trends and 1 part clear examples. These "ingredients" are not unique to press releases, since they also are good principals to follow for e-newsletters, blogs and social media, the link to this particular infographic may be found here: http://unbounce.com/content-marketing/the-mixology-of-content-marketing-infographic/
A second piece from this infographic was the mention of "Long Form Journalism." We found this to be an interesting strategy as well, and worth the read.
The big question is will this eventually be seen as another flag by Google once everyone has jumped onto the "content marketing through the use of a press release service" bandwagon? This could go one of two ways. On the positive side, for anyone who is using a press release for content marketing, as long as it includes solid, value-added content, there should be no issues or concerns. On the other hand, if people start submitting content that is of little value and poorly written, Google will look upon press releases as less valuable information.
So the key to success is to write and distribute good content. In order for your content to receive viewership, you need to know who your target audience is. It's good to include branding content, but it won't be of value and thus won't be read if you're targeting the wrong audience.
Ensure that your audience is specific and not general. When you have established who your audience is, you will also want to know as much about that type of audience as possible. This will assist you in figuring out what type of content you can offer through a press release that would help them out. When you write your content, make sure you are providing the answer to a question that actually helps your audience. Otherwise you might as well be throwing your content into the wind!
Don't be disingenuous: Stay away from false or misleading headlines that draw a reader in, only for them to find you have switched subjects to try and promote your business, service or product. This is also a very unpopular maneuver with journalists who scan press releases for valuable headlines, looking for industry experts. In fact, we recommend not even mentioning your product or service or pricing. Save this for an actual press release if you have something to announce. Build trust with your audience, it is not "all about you."
In short, using a press release service to provide your audience with useful information that will serve them well can build trust and lead to potential future clients or customers. When they see there is an expert in the industry who they trust, you will subconsciously be on their radar when they are looking to make a purchase.
Also, use a mix of different kinds of press releases (product announcements, HR announcements, new business partnerships and others) along with content related releases, so your news will continue to be interesting and multi-dimensional. This is what good communication is all about.