So, you’ve recently tasked your marketing director or agency to send out a press release on a fabulous new sustainable board your company just developed, or a new equipment purchase that has significantly improved turnaround times, but didn’t receive one response, inquiry, or order.
Want to know why?
Press releases are outdated. The quotes are made up and the content is self-serving. In fact, as soon as an editor sees one in their email inbox, it’s almost always deleted without being read.
Yes, press releases are as dead as the dodo.
What are the Alternatives?
So… now you know it’s a waste of $$$ to pay a marketing pro to write press releases or pay for an expensive PR service to release them, you might be asking, “Are there press release alternatives that actually work!?”
Let me tell you. (And this comes from both hard-earned marketing experience in the paper, print, and packaging industries AND as a one-time magazine editor.)
Today, editors want to publish articles that inform their readers and are, quite frankly, interesting. So instead of writing yet another boring press release about, for example, your latest eco-friendly board or new specialty coating, instead utilize content writing marketing to publish an article that features as many similar examples as you can think of, both inside and out of the print and packaging industry.
Yes, I said it. Have your marketing department write an article that includes your competitors’ similar products or services.
Here’s How It’s Done
For instance, if you’re releasing a new eco-friendly coating, here are a few ideas on how to structure such an article as a press release alternative:
- List all the eco-friendly coatings on the market and describe the pros and cons of each.
- Identify how each product differs from one another. (Think price, quality, type of manufacturing, or level of eco-friendliness)
- Explain how packaging designers can benefit from these types of coatings.
- Describe under which circumstances a packaging designer or consumer goods manufacturer would want to use each coating presented.
- Add a few images. Using stock photos in marketing is a-okay – don’t worry about snapping your own!
- Provide contact info or hyperlinks to your competitors’ websites.
True, the description of your new coating will only be a small part of the overall article, but the impact will be immense. Such an article will position your company as an industry expert that cares about customers so much that you’ll point them to a competitor if you don’t have something that meets their exact needs. (Yes, just like Miracle on 34th Street. You know, when Kris Kringle ignores his boss’ instructions to recommend overstocked items to undecided shoppers, and instead tells one woman she will find what she needs at their arch-rival’s store. So impressed, she reports to the department head that she will forever after shop with them.)
Now THIS is an article a trade magazine editor will be thrilled to publish. And it’s something your prospects will keep (and share) as part of their packaging library. Once published, it will make a fantastic leave-behind for your sales staff and can act as a conversation starter at sales meetings. And since your marketing team wrote it, you can publish it (in full or in part) on your blog page to help improve site SEO. Talk about valuable content writing marketing!
Are press releases still relevant? No. But, luckily, you have an opportunity to switch to a press release alternative that will attract even more customers! Switch to content writing marketing and publish creative, informative articles instead. Thank me later!
About the author
A Yale University graduate, Kim is a writer, award-winning designer, lead gen expert, and and marketing generalist, meaning that she works best with start ups or companies that don’t yet have a marketing department in place. She is also a medieval and renaissance history nerd, and has numerous websites and blogs for the RenFaire community.