The world has changed. Gone are the days where you sent out a press release via fax and included three hashtags (###) at the bottom for the sole purpose of letting the reporter know that was the end of the press release. Today reporters are using hashtags to search Twitter to find news.
A 2012 study found that 62 percent of reporters draw news from trusted sources on Facebook and Twitter. I know for myself that when I was a law enforcement reporter I checked the Provo City police Facebook page every day to see if a press release had been released, if a news conference was being held or if there was an update to an ongoing investigation.
Here’s 5 tips to help your press release catch some social media buzz.
Tweet about it
You should be tweeting out all of your press releases. In your tweet include a link to the press release and write a tweet that’s interesting, attention grabbing and will get your audience to read the press release, share, retweet and follow. Make sure to use a link shortener like bitly to ensure that you stay under Twitter’s 140 character limit. It’s also important to make sure to include highly used hashtags in your tweet so that your press release shows up where reporters will be looking for it.
Share it on Facebook
Your company’s Facebook page will be one of the first places reporters will look for news. Post your press release on Facebook and include an image or YouTube video along with your post so that your followers can share it with their friends. When writing your post don’t be longwinded or dry, sum up the content of your press release in a short attention grabbing way. Think newspaper headline. Another thing to think about is adding a question in your post so that your Facebook followers have a reason to comment on it.
LinkedIn is a fantastic way to share news about your company. Especially if you’re in B2B sales. Post your press release in industry related LinkedIn Groups. Write a short summary of your press release and include a link to the full release.
Blog about it
Always post press releases to your corporate blog. This accomplishes a couple of things. One, it allows reporters to have a place that they know they can find news about your company. Second, it boosts your SEO. Google wants to see your website putting up fresh content consistently and posting your press releases to your corporate blog is a great way to help you get to the top of the search rankings.
Make it Easy to Share
It’s important to make your press release easy to tweet and post about. Include social sharing links that allow readers to share it with just one click. Write in easily digestible sound bites that a reader could pull from your press release and tweet to their followers or post on their newsfeed. Include lots of media. Pictures and videos make sharing easier. Include attention grabbing infographics, YouTube videos and photos that are easy for readers to share.
Don’t be boring. Make sure your press release is news worthy. Ask yourself the “who cares” question. If the answer is, “only you” or “your company’s employees,” than your press release isn’t really news worthy. Social media users will only share and retweet news that is interesting and makes them look good in the eyes of their social network. If your news isn’t news nobody’s going to share it.