Has the press release had its day?

Fifteen years ago, writing a press release was a pretty good way to secure media coverage.  Then the trade magazines started to charge for 'colour separations' which was the only way to guarantee they would use a press release with a colour photograph.

Now, although the press release is still important, it is not enough for PR companies or construction or manufacturing businesses to send out a press release and expect lots of coverage, as was the case in the past.  Even a well written, accurate, concise, punchy press release may not hit the mark.  There are very important reasons for this:

Firstly, the person sending out the press release needs to have the right media contacts and to be working with a relevant and updated target list.  Journalists have had enough of companies and PR agencies ‘blanketing out’ press releases to anyone through their e-newswire systems, without a thought of personalising it or making a call to let an editor know to expect it – blanket press releases are a big no-no if you want to secure quality coverage.

Secondly, these days magazines and even local press have to be more commercial than ever before, this means that when they receive a press release it is often passed to their advertising department, who may follow it up with a call or email asking for an advertising budget. 

Many PR agencies and clients have come unstuck by telling these media representatives ‘we don’t do advertising, just press releases’… this can cause an issue and will most likely ensure that your press release goes to the bottom of the in-box and never sees the light of day.  The best approach is to work with these media representatives to support them where you can and if a budget is available, place an advert and negotiate a sizeable editorial space in free editorial. 

Thirdly, the nature of PR is rapidly changing.  Editors prefer exclusive articles tailored to their publication and target audience, rather than mass market press releases, hence the reason why the editorial features calendar really is king.  Targeting editorial features that are relevant to your business in specific magazines, such as construction or manufacturing trade press, guarantees a much better chance of success than simply sending out a press release.  But it does take a lot more time for our PR team to do this.

So this is why we often recommend a targeted features-led approach, based around a creative PR campaign.  Our PR team is skilled in working with the trade and consumer press to negotiate editorial features and ensure we can generate content that the magazines will run.  So whether you are looking to launch or raise awareness of a new product or an issue in the industry that you can solve, or to stimulate interest in your existing products or services, just drop us a line at hello@dragonflypr.co.uk or call 01709 300130.  Whatever your PR, social media or digital marketing requirement, we can help and our extensive b2b knowledge and experience ensures you are dealing with a knowledgeable and professional team.

Call us on: 0114 349 5341