A client asked this question. And it was a good one.
My response was this: Keep two things in mind about any press release. That release must be a part of an ongoing PR and marketing strategy. And, to increase sales, it must be written in a way that highlights product benefits and prompts prospects to take action.
Why doesn’t one release increase sales?
A few years back, a prospect would recall your marketing message after viewing it in print three times. Today, because we have become media saturated, that same prospect must view your message seven times. Developing an ongoing PR and marketing strategy has become essential.
Not only must your press release produce an article that sends a marketing message, it must also include a call to action. In this client’s case, the article focused on the history of the business. The release included no marketing message, no call to action.
What to include in a release
If you want your press releases to increase sales, here’s how:
- Write the release about the benefits of the product or service.
- Use your headline to highlight the benefit.
- Include a call for action.
- Place additional information about the business at the end of the release.
Let’s try it. Compare the following headlines. Which set, 1 or 2, highlights benefits of the products?
- XYZ company announces new one-hour computer service
- Red Apple Wellness sponsors free nutrition seminar
- Nonprofit webinar series features three nature artists
- Your computer back in an hour: XYZ manager
- Free wellness seminar: Boost your energy by 50%
- Artists’ webinars teach homeowners to bring outdoors in
Set 2 headlines highlight product benefits. They offer value.
Set 1 headlines inform readers that the company is taking some action.
What is ‘A Call to Action?’
You want your prospects to do something–you want to convert them to customers. Prompt them to call you, come in to your shop, clip a coupon. Tell them that in the release. Include a phone number or an online link.
For example, a computer repair company could include a link to a coupon for a free laptop diagnosis. Or they could include a phone number to schedule a free diagnostic appointment.
Understand what you want your press releases to do
Know what you are trying to accomplish with your releases, and you will create the best content. Are you trying to boost sales? Change your company image? Drive customers to an online site? Review your goals, then write your release accordingly.
It’s easier than you think
Sending out one strategized, well-written release per month to targeted media is an achievable goal. And,information you send out in one release can be used across multiple platforms: Facebook, LinkedIn, Blogs. In this manner, you can simplify your strategy and keep your name in front of prospective buyers. Here’s how one client achieved that goal.