Press Releases- Do They Still Impress?

A few years ago putting out a totally SEO'd press release was a great way to get a bunch of links back to your site, thereby getting better rankings in Google for your site.  In addition, the press release itself would get ranked in Google if someone typed in the right keywords.  They go to the press release that links to your site and you get even more traffic.  Does this still work as well today?  And if not, how can a press release help your site out?

As you probably guessed, once someone figured out how well this worked, everyone did this.  They put out lots of badly written, spammy, keyword and link stuffed press releases on sites such as PRweb, PRleap, etc.  They were trying to trying to game Google just for a link or links by just churning out releases that had no real value to a reader..  Google got wise to this and has greatly devalued the links coming from press releases.  So how do you get the most out of press releases today?  Is it even worth the time?

Best Practices for Press Releases

 Really, nowadays in a effort to reduce spam and level the playing field the

idea behind a press release is back to what it should be- Well written, timely, compelling, newsworthy.  If this is the case, it may get picked up by a number of news or other sites and reposted with links back to your site.

 And this is what your press release should be.  Here are a few simple tactics as far as optimizing press releases for maximum possible effect on your site:

1.  Deliver high value to whoever reads it.  As was mentioned, keep it well written, timely, compelling, newsworthy.

2.  Ideas for press releases:  A Press releases can announce a range of news items such as: scheduled events, personal promotions, awards, news products and services, sales and other financial data, accomplishments, etc.

3.  Have the keywords you want people to type into Google in your press release in a natural way.  For instance if you are a Lasik surgeon in Los Angeles, California your potential customer might type into Google "Lasik, LA" or "Lasik, Los Angeles".  Have these keywords in the release a few times but not in a spammy way.

4.  Use anchor text in your press release.  In writing the press release you are often given the opportunity to link to your site.  The actual text that is hyperlinked is the anchor text.  Make sure this text has the keyword phrase (like "Lasik, Los Angeles") linking to a page that has the same keywords in it.  Don't just hyperlink the words "click here" or something like this.  This may not seem like a big deal but it is.  Do a search on Google for info on "anchor text" and how much Google uses it.

5.   Keep your press release to a reasonable size and keep it on topic- you can always write another one later for another topic/subject. 

6.  Email it to some handpicked journalists and bloggers. Personalize the email message. For good measure, submit it to PRWeb, PRLeap, etc.

More great info on press releases:

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