01 Mar How to plan your press release program
We all know that we should distribute a press release to announce major milestones such as a new product or service, a new staff member, or a new facility. But major milestones only occur every so often. Ideally, you are issuing a minimum of two new press releases every month. How do you generate 24 or more press releases a year? How do you make each truly newsworthy?
It takes a plan: an “editorial calendar.” To start, make a list of possible topics for press releases – news about events at your organization: product launches, sales milestones, new customers, new employees, promoted employees, new technology, new capabilities, new facilities, line extensions…any positive “breaking news” regarding the evolution of your brand.
Now conceive of a dozen more topics. This is where the challenge gets harder. Think about other aspects of your company. Are you doing more of one type of business than you used to? Announce that your company has expanded in that area. Is your company publishing other content of value to your target audiences: product manuals, white papers, monographs? Announce each with a press release. Is your company exhibiting at an upcoming trade show? Announce what you will be offering that is new: new literature, new presentations, and so on.
Does your company support a charitable organization? Announce your renewed support for—or participation in—their activities. Has one of your employees done something positive and exemplary outside of work, such as donated their time or skills, or achieved a milestone in a different field (for example, won a marathon, published a book, built a “Habitat for Humanity,” organized a food drive for homeless, filled and shipped care kits for soldiers)? Announce it in a press release—this adds interest to your company image and shows that you are real people with lives outside of work.
Has your company changed procedures or reorganized departments in order to do things more efficiently? That may seem like purely internal news—make it external. Announce it to the media and explain why it is of value to your customers.
Keep adding to this list. Engage an objective healthcare marketing partner—such as Bryant Brown Healthcare—to help you plan topics, write releases, distribute them, and track metrics.
Your partner can also help you repurpose content from your press releases for dissemination via your blog, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube, and other social media sites. These initiatives help further to build visibility, credibility, and searchability for your brand.
There’s much more in the PR realm that can be done to cost-effectively build brand awareness and to support your search engine optimization efforts. But start with a well planned, well executed press release program.
Want to know more. See What makes press releases more important than ever?