Top 10 strategies for a winning B2B press release
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According to a Fractl report, most top-tier writers receive 100, 250, or even 500 pitches a week for an average of 5 story spots, so you have a few seconds – not minutes – before a journalist gets distracted if they’re not engaged from the get go. It’s also important to note that once you’ve issued a press release, the news becomes a less valuable commodity to your company and reporters alike. Therefore, it’s important to smartly write your announcement and deliver it at the best time.
Here are some essential items that can make or break a press release:
- Choose the right topic: A B2B press release can address many topics, including original research, awards won, new c-level appointments, public appearances, philanthropy initiatives, a new product/service launch, and a new client or partnership. Whatever you’re announcing, be sure that the release is clear, punchy and to the point.
- Put the newsworthy angle first in a catchy headline: The goal is to break through the clutter and to be read alongside Apple and conglomerates in the same space. This requires a newsworthy hook and a concise description of the story.
- Include imagery: The right image can boost visibility. Stock art is not ideal. It’s better to get an action shot of your subject or an appropriate original image that is informative and interesting. Additionally, provide the highest resolution you can- high resolution is 300 dpi or above for anything in print.
- Consider video: A video can be more effective than images or text. If you’re creating it, try to keep the video under four minutes. To show you’re professional, make sure the quality of the video is high, at least HD, and not shaky. To get the attention of viewers, draft a compelling script and storyboard, and place a call to action at the end. You can host it on YouTube or Vimeo, so people are comfortable opening it.
- Place the most important summary information upfront: Readers may only look at your release for a few seconds, so writers should put the most important information first followed by more details down below.
- Use value-added quotes: Quotes must add value to content. Some ways to do this are connecting quotes to an industry’s larger issues, explaining why the news is important, summarizing a problem and how it’s being fixed, using a good analogy, or using emotion and humor to express a strong opinion. Look at examples of other quotes and try reading your release without your quote in it to gauge if it’s adding value.
- Ensure the boilerplate is well crafted: Journalists rely on boilerplates for basic company information. Avoid jargon and make sure to clearly describe key services and products, customers, size, location, accolades and mission. Additionally, you should add key words for SEO and a call to action linking to your website.
- Target the right audience: In a recent study, 500+ journalists voted that receiving an irrelevant pitch was the most offensive thing a PR agent could do. Therefore, research the beats of reporters you want to contact.
- Concisely tell interesting and positively angled news: Per a survey of over 500+ top-tier journalists, “most writers (58%) prefer to receive a pitch between 100 and 200 words.” Therefore, word count is limited, so communicate fully.
- Timing is everything: Scheduling a release at the right time helps avoid getting lost in clutter. Avoid Fridays or weekends because journalists may not read work emails then. Also consider scheduling just before or after the stock market opens. Also be weary of time zones. Ideal times may be different for different industries, so learn the important dates and times of your vertical.
Journalists’ inboxes are overfilled, so it’s critical to make sure every piece of the release is exceptionally well crafted. This could make the difference and make your news stand out.