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How To Use Images And Photos To Make Your Press Releases POP Most press releases are little more than text. They're published without the important bells and whistles that draw readers' attention. Lacking photos or graphics, they merely convey information, leaving the reader to decide whether the story is engaging enough to actually read.   That's leaving a huge opportunity on the table. Our eyes tend to gravitate toward images in a way that text cannot match. Whether real-life photos or computer-generated graphics, images attract our attention and help us connect with and remember the content.   Ask yourself: have you ever seen an effective marketing brochure that didn't use photos? Have you ever seen a high-converting sales page online that lacked them? Probably not. And neither should you distribute press releases without including some type of image that supports your story.
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Publicity Ideas For Insurance Agents: 6 Creative Ways To Promote Your Services According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are nearly 400,000 insurance agents nationwide. To say the field is competitive is an understatement, and as an agent, you know firsthand that it takes more than hard work and dedication to be successful. You need a way to stand apart from the pack so people in your city will notice you.    That's where generating publicity comes in. It ensures your name is on prospects' minds. When the time comes for them to purchase an insurance product, they'll think of you and pick up the phone.   How do create buzz around your services? Read on for 6 ideas that are simple, cost-effective, and even fun!
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Business Changes Covid-19 OPM Communicating Business Changes To Customers Amid COVID-19

As the world continues to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses have had to change the way they operate. The best way to help customers find accurate information about your business is to make sure they're aware of all changes that affect their experience. Think operating hours, in-store policies and capacity limits, changes to shipping or exchange/return policies, service options for restaurants, etc. These changes may also include positive benefits for customers, such as free online shipping when stores are closed, free food delivery, or virtual appointments and meetings (saves gas!). 

Because people look for information about a business in so many different places, it's important to have a process for communicating across a variety of channels. Follow this 6-step process to quickly and consistently communicate business changes to customers. 

#1 - Update Your Google Business Profile

This is especially important for local businesses, as this is how most people will quickly find your hours, phone number, address, website, reviews, and get one-click directions to you. If your hours change, make the update on your Google listing first and foremost. For restaurants, you can even specify dine-in, curbside pickup, and delivery options that will display right on your Google listing.

#2 - Take To Social Media

Next, announce any changes on your social pages. For critical changes, like changes to operating hours or a new policy requiring masks in your store, pin the announcement to the top of your page.

#3 - Send An Email

Many businesses will agree that email is still their most effective means of communicating with customers. While a general blast to your whole list will suffice, also consider segmenting your lists so that you can communicate business changes only to those customers affected (i.e. one doctor's hours are changing). When customers receive information that is relevant to them, they're more likely to stay engaged and continue opening emails from you. 

#4 - Send A Text

If you use SMS marketing, a quick text is a great way to communicate business changes to customers who have opted into your list. 

#5 - Tell The Media

Use an online press release to communicate your business changes. A press release has several distinct advantages. First, it gives you the platform to provide context. Especially if customers may be inconvenienced, it helps to give your reasoning (i.e. a yoga studio is choosing to remain closed because the owner has a high-risk family member). Next, it may catch the attention of journalists. If your business changes will have a major impact on your community, it may warrant a mention in your local news. We'd go a step further and say that if this is the case, you should proactively reach out to local journalists and share your press release directly. Finally, an online press release has SEO value. If someone searches your company name along with a question, Google may return your press release as a search result. 

#6 - Update Your Website

Update your business hours, policy changes, and anything else your customers need to know on your website. A lot of businesses are using banners on their homepage to communicate policy changes and important notices "Due to COVID-19." This is a great way to quickly get the information on your website without any major changes to your site. 

Online PR Media Is Here To Help!
2020 has thrown us quite a few curveballs, and we've learned to bob and weave and adapt and overcome! Stay connected with your customers and let them know about any business changes that affect them using a variety of channels. If you have any questions about using online press releases, we're here to help!

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Using Picreel To Get More From Your Press Release Traffic

If you're sharing your company's news using online press releases, then you already understand the benefits and excellent exposure it provides. But what happens when a reader actually comes to your website from your press release? Are you ready and waiting for them? Do you have a clear call to action (what you want them to do on your website), and an easy way for them to do it? 

Planning ahead and setting up dedicated forms and pop-ups can help you get more people to act on your call to action. 

Here's how to do it.

Create Dedicated Landing Pages

A landing page is simply the term for a page on your website that exists for a specific purpose. It is usually not part of your main website navigation. Instead, the URL (web address) is used in ads, emails, and even in press releases to direct visitors to a specific page to learn more about a product or service, fill out a form, or complete some other action. 

Versus just sending visitors to your homepage where they aren't sure where to go or what to do, a landing page has a clear call to action, the information a visitor needs to make a decision, and an easy way to do it. 

Best Practices For Using Landing Pages In Your Press Release

  • Make at least one of your anchor text links in your release go to a dedicated landing page. Ideally, this is around your call to action (i.e. "register for the webinar" which links to your landing page, https://example.com/webinar/).
  • The landing page should have more info that expands on press release topic or call to action (i.e. details of the webinar, how to register, case studies from past customers who have used the strategies from the webinar, etc.).
  • Use a form to collect leads or registrations, but KISS -- Keep It Super Simple! Only collect the information you need. 
  • Make sure the topic of the landing page is relevant to the press release, and most importantly is helpful and valuable to visitors. 

Targeted Pop-Up Offers

Pop-ups can be used separately or in conjunction with landing pages. The advantage of pop-ups is that they can be used anywhere on your website. Picreel also has very specific targeting options that allow you to show pop-ups to visitors based on how long they have been on a page, how far they've scrolled, how many pages they've visited, and a host of other options.

You can also target pop-ups based on where a visitor came from. Yep, even from your press releases!

Our partners over at Online PR Media recently shared a post about using UTM tracking codes in your press releases. It's a feature in Google Analytics that allows you to create a custom code to add to the URL (web address) of one of your website pages. The code allows you to track the link's performance, which effectively also tells you something about the press release's performance. 

It also allows you to customize pop-up offers for people coming to your website from that link. 

Creating A Pop-Up Offer Targeted To Your Press Release

Let's go back to the webinar example and create a pop-up that only displays to the people that click the UTM link from your press release.

In Google Analytics, go to the Campaign URL Builder and enter the parameters for your UTM code. For a webinar signup, the parameters could look something like this:

Website URL: the web address of whatever page on your website you want to link to and track (i.e. https://example.com/webinar/)

Campaign: "marketing-webinar"

Source: "news"

Medium: "press-release"

Content: "nov-19"

Google Analytics will then generate a custom URL with the UTM code. 

Next, head over to your Picreel dashboard and create a new campaign to invite visitors from the press release to sign up for the webinar (we conveniently already have a webinar template, should you ever need one!).

Once you're happy with the design and wording, save your campaign and move on to Target Options. 

Scroll down to Other Options, then expand the "where visitor came from?" section.

Select "referring domain"

Select "is" 

And then paste in your UTM. 

Now, anyone who reads your press release and clicks on your "webinar" link will be directed to your website and shown this uber-specific pop-up offer. 

Imagine the possibilities! With a little forethought and planning, you can get so much more from your press release traffic. 

Get Started With Picreel In Minutes
Ready to see just how much more? Try Picreel for free for 30 days - no obligation and credit card required. For a limited time, we're also offering FREE setup services for new customers. We will setup Picreel on your website, create an offer your customers will love, and launch it on your website. Contact us to learn more or schedule your setup today.

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Write Better Press Releases In 2019 It’s the New Year, and you’re feeling ambitious! You’ve mastered the basics in How to Write an SEO Press Release, and now, you’re ready to bring your press release writing skills to the next level. In the ever-evolving world of search engine optimization and online marketing strategies, knowing and applying the latest tactics to your writing is critical if you want your press releases to stand out. Here, you’ll find the latest tips to stay ahead of the game so you can write stronger press releases and make the most of them in the publicity climate of 2019.
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Simple Social Media Marketing Tricks To Boost Holiday Sales It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and even large retailers rely on consumers' Q4 spending habits to make up a huge chunk of their total annual revenue. During the holiday season, people are even more prepared than usual to open their pocketbooks. In fact, the average American plans to spend nearly $800 on Christmas gifts this season.   Want a share of the action? Using social media marketing greatly increases your chances; a recent study showed that 37% of online shoppers say they use social media for purchase inspiration. Here are some quick tips to help you capitalize on an audience that is ready to spend.
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