What really IS the best time to publish a press release? That’s a question that we hear a lot — and there really is no “definite” answer. Common knowledge is that press releases do better “Tuesday through Thursday.” And while these are certainly the most popular days to submit a press release according to our site’s traffic numbers — you could be missing out if you only follow the common paradigm without evaluating the big picture.
In order to answer this question, we’ve asked 2 of our savvy Internet marketing customers and one representative of one of the countries most established newswire services for their opinions.
The conclusion — there is no “one size fits all” time, but there is a “right time” for you. Our aim is to arm you with the information you need to decide when the best time is to publish YOUR press release.
Scott Moir, Founder of Irbtrax
Around here, we call Scott the “stats man.” Scott, the founder of the SEO and internet marketing strategies firm, Irbtrax SEO, has an incredible ability to not only compile stats, but to really KNOW which stats to measure to make sense of the bottom line.
According to Scott:
The best time to send out a press release is during the peak Internet traffic hours for your target audience, no matter which day you choose. This accomplishes a couple things:
First, the release has the best chance of being viewed while still in Google News, before other releases that might a carry similar message push it back in the news queue. The reason this is important is because I’ve found the more views it gets while in the process of being organically indexed, the higher the Google ‘popularity’ quotient. A high Google popularity quotient, providing the release is both uniquely worded and relevant, provides the best chance for that release to gain page rank.
The second and most obvious reason for keeping the target market in mind is results — results such as views, leads or conversions. Obviously if you publish a B2B release on a Friday evening, chances are you’re going to miss the bulk of your target market’s search trends.
– Scott Moir, Irbtrax
This is wonderful knowledge — you’ve got to know when your target audience is online. “Tuesday – Thursday” works so well because that’s when most business are online — but today, press releases reach the end consumer directly.
If you’re a realtor and your target audience is searching for homes on the weekends, it makes more sense to publish your press release during the times THEY are online looking. Even though the press release will “live” online forever, press releases tend to have greater visibility within the first 48 hours that they are published.
Josh O’Berski — SEO Specialist
Josh O’Berski is an SEO (search engine optimization) specialist for one of the most innovative Chicago Internet Marketing Firms, Straight North. Like Scott, as an SEO, Josh evaluates timing from the impact it has for its clients not only in terms of conversion, but also in the search engines.
While we don’t hold to these rules exclusively, we find that our press releases do better when released Tuesday-Thursday. We’re not absolutely convinced that timing is the most important factor though. For our clients, the primary factor in getting good pickup involves having a news story that is relevant and covers a topic we’re able to promote to the right industry representatives and thought leaders.
– Josh O’Berski, Chicago SEO Company, Straight North
I love what Josh is saying here… as an SEO, he knows that the more people talk about (i.e. link to and share) a press release, the more impact is has as a tool to either rank well in the search engines or pass link value on to the company’s website.
A press release will be syndicated in full in many places (depending on which distribution option you choose), which provides lots of anchor text backlinks. But when people favorite/tweet/bookmark/etc the release, that’s golden. More importantly, when influential communicators read the release, then find out more about the company, and then write about the company as a thought leader — that is platinum. But in order for that to happen, the message must be interesting and relevant to the right people.
The key is exposure. Just about anything can happen if the right people are exposed to the right message. Anything from business partnerships to media mentions to new customers. We see all of those things happen as a result of press releases, all the time.
PR Newswire Editor
When Tara asked this same question of an editor at PR Newswire, one of the nation’s most established satellite wire services and our newswire partner for our wire distribution package, her response was — and I summarize:
For privately held companies, the best time to send out a press release is after 10am EST on a weekday. Many of the publicly traded companies send out their press releases early in the morning. Sending it after 10am means that the press release is less likely to be buried among all the traffic that takes place in the early morning hours.
Keep in mind that this is from the point of view of sending a release over the wire. When they refer to “the wire” they are referring to the satellite feed that newspapers, TV, and radio stations subscribe to in order to watch for breaking news and highly relevant news. (These are the press releases that submitted via our $349 distribution level).
However, the philosophy has merit for online press releases too. Since most people think that it’s a good idea to submit news first thing in the morning, there could conceivable be a “clogging up” factor in terms of releases being featured in Google News and on other news aggregators. Furthermore, many sites have news widgets that display headlines from various press release distribution sites. These feeds only display a certain number of headlines due to space restrictions.
If your press release is submitted during times outside of the bulk rush but inside of peak hours for your target audience, the headline could conceivable be more visible than if it were one of thousands that were pouring through all at once.
What say you? In your experience, what has been the best time to submit a press release?