Best Practices

The Press Release is Dead

Image of Dead Press Release

This week I’ve seen an overwhelming amount of blog posts and twitter feeds surrounding the “new” PR. But I have to say, the new PR looks a lot like the old PR, just gift wrapped with nicer paper. Relationships still matter. Pitches still need to be compelling. Press Release pros still need to be creative.

While these truths will never change, there has been a fundamental change in the way Press Release is delivered. Below I’d like to share some of the more common changes coming:

The Press Release is Dead.

Perhaps I should say the way we use it as a tool is in the advanced stages of rigor mortis. Today’s press releases are more about SEO and driving up page rankings than a vehicle for getting news out. I still send releases, but today they’re more to drive additional traffic back to landing pages and fill Google with company news. Bylines, videos on YouTube and blogs written by thought leaders are emerging as the new vehicle to push a company into the spotlight.

Relationships still reign.

While it’s easier than ever to bombard editors and reporters with pitches through Twitter, relationships still reign in new media. Why shotgun messages to bloggers email boxes and pitch via Twitter if you don’t have a personal relationship with the reporter? I’ve been the recipient of several pitches from PR rookies who don’t know what I blog about or who makes up my audience. (Clue to PR peeps, my blog is attached to my website that proves; I too, dabble in PR.) It still makes sense to take the time to build a relationship BEFORE the pitch. Otherwise, it’s just white noise.

You are the publisher.

With blogs, and Twitter anyone and everyone can be their own publisher. Become a thought leader in the space by building your own community. Guest post on blogs, write bylines and tweet your thoughts. It’s much easier than it used to be to create buzz. A word of caution here; ensure what you’re putting out is useful and educational. Online readers can see through promotions and douchey posts. I promise.

AVE needs to just go away.

Ad Value Equivalency (AVE) is the old way to measure PR progress. It’s based on multiplying the space occupied by a clip by the ad rate of the page. I understand the need to quantify PR, I do. But there are many better ways to measure PR than this antiquated method. One great way to do it is the amount of buzz that has been created. Are people engaged? Are they responding to your posts? Are your website numbers up? Determine what customer engagement looks like and then use that number to measure success.

I know this might be a little in left field for the DealerRefresh reader at the dealership, but if you are taking your dealership blog serious, working community events while tying it into your dealers online social presence to engage the consumer, then you know what I’m talking about.

If you want to delve deeper into the new reality of PR, I highly recommend the book, The New Rules of Marketing and PR by David Meerman Scott or check out his blog at WebInkNow. Not that he needs any further buzz, he’s already using the tips above.

  • R
  • May 24, 2011
Hi Laurie
Sorry to gripe, but it's what I do best.

"While these truths will never change, there has been a fundamental change in the way Press Release is delivered. Below I’d like to share some of the more common changes coming:"

.. a press release is delivered ..
.. press releases are delivered ..
.. more common changes ..

Measure twice, cut once.

Kind regards