What’s Online PR All About?


The internet is now the way of researching any topic or purchasing decision and press releases should be submitted online where people can find them. With the tools available online for aggregating news you can use Google News and RSS feeds to provide news to websites and individuals who have set themselves up to receive it. With blogs, podcasts and niche information websites springing up everywhere the potential to reach people is equivalent to what was previously only available to the big online PR groups with access to exclusive news wires and huge distribution.

The audience for press releases online is slightly different to offline. Whereas in offline press releases are written to target a specific journalists with a certain types of stories and the PR agency would sell the story one on one to a publication, with online press releases you are writing directly to Joe Public and journalists at the same time.

Using a fishing analogy the internet is equivalent to millions and millions of little ponds spread out all over the place. With traditional PR the ponds were lakes where one publication acted like a gate keeper and served all the fish. Now we have many ponds with different types of fish in each one who huddle around different little niches. This means that with audiences split up into many niches there is a need to create more press releases covering more types of stories. Online PR is not about the BIG story but bespoke news for set groups that companies want to attract.

How do you get the press releases online?

Using an online PR service will take a press release and put it onto News aggregators like Google News will ensure that the main niche sites pick up relevant news. Google News is a mecca for people who are interested in certain niches. People interested in bizarre subjects like ‘Underwater Basket Weaving’ will create an alert in Google News to be notified when a new piece of news about ‘Underwater Basket Weaving’ appears. So if a press release hits a niche it will trigger an alert and webmasters, bloggers and the general public will check their email and RSS feeds.

With many part time webmasters creating websites around a certain topics like ‘Big Brother 9’, they need new content for their front page to get users to visit repeatably. Webmaster create sections on their front page are fed from Google News or Freepressreleases.co.uk to display new topics to their users. The gatekeeper has gone and distribution is automatic.

If no journalist is filtering what gets published online press releases should be structured differently. If a press release is about a new product online readers should be shown what to do next, i.e. adding a call the action into the press release. Press Releases can link to a report on survey results or videos on the topic. By using a mechanism for data capture that can capture data and feed into the company marketing department.

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