Press releases; whether you think of them as an essential route to media or a traditional tool, we know the power they behold to bolster your brand.

Building your businesses profile, reputation and driving sales can be the work of the mighty press release – if it’s done right. While we say content is king, the content has to be accurate, engaging and smart to work its magic.

A great article by one of our favourite reads, PR Daily, outlines how press releases can serve a host of other purposes, including helping readers find you from behind a paywall and increasing your site’s search ranking on Google.

PR Daily’s recent SEO Certificate Course for Communicators covered this topic and included Visably’s Ultimate Guide to Search Engine Strategy.

Within the guide there is lots of brilliant intel on search and in particular how we can optimise releases for search. Here are top tips from Visably’s guide.

1. Small keyword tweaks can have big effects on search volume

If you have a headline or key descriptor phrase in mind, double check to make sure that’s actually how people look for that type of benefit or product. For example, the keyword phrase “Portable Kayak” has only a third the search traffic as “Lightweight Kayak.” These small changes to the title of your press may make a major impact down the road.

2. Who you quote matters

Quoting a recognisable figure like your CEO or other public figure (sponsored athlete, celebrity chef or social influencer) in the press release may provide your content with greater visibility as those people may be the subject of searches themselves.

3. Original graphics and data help

Not only will your press release be more likely picked up by the journalists, but search algorithms will also recognise and reward original content and data presentation. Not all press release topics will have this opportunity, but it’s worth pushing your team towards generation and distribution of original content and research.

4. Don’t be spammy

Indiscriminate distribution of press materials continues to plague the PR industry. Beware that with SEO, you can actually incur tangible penalties from this kind of behaviour. Follow links from websites of questionable reputation can weigh negatively on your page rankings. You don’t want just anyone publishing your press release.

You can find out more about how press releases can serve a host of other purposes, by reading the Visibly guide here.

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