Sunday, May 12, 2013

Twenty Great Reasons to Write and Publish a News Release

In my last blog post (which is too long ago, I admit that), I wrote about the downfall of businesses who think all their news is fit to print.

Honestly, sweethearts, it's not.

But it is not all that difficult to find reasons to communicate with the press (which in this case is not limited to print journalism--although many people on LinkedIn have argued that a press release is something that goes to "press" in traditional print way, rather than a news release that is sent to all news outlets. Whatever).

A news/press release can be about a lot of topics or matters related to your company or practice but should resonate with prospective readers, viewers, listeners (there, I've covered all ways to consume the news -- print, video/televisions/online, radio/podcast. Anything else?). 

Aside from announcing a new product or service you offer, which is true news (especially if it has real merit to your audience), here's a far-from-exhaustive list of (twenty) reasons to put out a news release about your company:

1  Announcing your new company website or significant upgrades to your existing website--and how they help your customers.
2.  Involvement with charity work; community service earns press and positive relations with the public. 

3.  Results or findings of a new study or research in your industry or field.
4.  Useful tips related to your product or service (without being overtly self-promotional).

5.  Forecasts about your industry or upcoming changes in your field that will affect consumers.
6.  Comments on current events or trends that relate to your industry.
7. Receiving an award -- this can be an employee, manager, owner, or the company. Share the good news!
8. An offer of a free downloadable white paper or e-book that benefits your audience; people love free information.
9. Adding new employees or opening a new office/location.

10. Saying goodbye to long-term employees who are retiring -- nice reason to craft a feature release.
11. Your office is hosting a special event or educational webinar or seminar.
12. Announce a reorganization or a renaming of your business.
13. Somewhat related, announcing the rebranding of your business (could be a renaming and corresponding marketing overhaul, or a periodic rebranding to refresh and renew how customers see you).
14. Community events your company is sponsoring, from high school fundraisers to Little League teams to social action endeavors.
15. Marking a milestone anniversary for your business (great way to include a retrospective of important business accomplishments or contributions over the years).
16. Gaining a big-name client or inking a big deal (as long as it's OK that this is public knowledge).
17. Presenting at an industry conference, exhibiting at a trade show, or sponsoring a program.
18. Crisis communications -- responding to negative press about your company, product, or service; managing your reputation with your public (where the rubber meets the road in public relations).
19. Making an appearance on a talk show or participating in an expert panel, from internet radio to television interviews to business interviews in the newspaper. All good.
20. Major financial or structural changes in your company-- merger or acquisition, going public, expanding overseas.

What are some of the reasons why your business has issued a press release? Feel free to share them in the comments box.