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How to Effectively Repurpose your Content into a Press Release with Sally Falkow

How to Effectively Repurpose your Content into a Press Release with Sally Falkow

Do you know how to create press releases in order to get your content in front or your desired audience in the newspaper, on radio and television?

Perhaps you’re thinking why would you do this?…why bother with press releases in the digital age when we can reach so many people via social media and other means? However, getting attention in the press and knowing how to create a press release may be really useful for you and your business.

What’s more, perhaps you can repurpose content into a press release so it does not take too much more time and effort, yet reaps many rewards. Interested?

In this week’s episode of the Content 10x podcast I interview Sally Falkow, an Accredited PR practitioner with the Public Relations Society of America. We talk all about what press releases are, why they are important and how to create a press release by repurposing your existing content.

{Listen to the podcast by clicking on the player below or keep on reading}

Press Releases Today

Press releases remain a popular method of providing news and promoting brand awareness.

However, press releases have been reinvented, no longer are they blocks of text, they need to be interactive and visual if they are going to grab the attention of a journalist.

Research revealed on inc.com explains that 81% of people just skim read content meaning you need more than just writing to get and more importantly keep people’s attention…journalists of course know this.

Sally Falkow, PR Expert

My guest, Sally Falkow, has been working in PR for many years and has been a pioneer in the change to Digital PR. She writes about the impact of technology on the media, PR, and marketing on her blog ProactiveReport.com.

Her book, SMART News: How to Write Branded Content That Gets Found in Search and Shared on Social Media, covers how to write news releases in the digital age.  

Sally is a Senior Fellow and advisory board member of the Society for New Communications Research. Her area of research is how company news content meets the changing needs of the media.

Sally had some great ideas and advice for incorporating press releases into your content marketing strategy

What is a press release?

Sally explained when we spoke about how press releases started more than 100 years ago when the only media available to reach large audiences was newspapers. 

Creating written press releases formed an important part of your content marketing strategy to ensure your content and message were shared and seen. I’m not quite sure if they called it a ‘content marketing strategy’ back then, during the times of horse-and-cart. But in fact, I’m sure Henry Ford was creating press releases for his Model T Ford.

How to Effectively Repurpose Your Content Into a Press Release

Fast forward to today, and we see the impact of technology has meant content can be presented in a multi-media format. We’ve seen radio, TV, video, the internet… and so on come into our lives and these varied media channels all present great opportunities for businesses to get content in front of their audiences. Every time new media channels become mainstream, press releases have evolved too.

In fact, in the early days of the internet text became the dominant media again because download speeds were too slow for our computers to handle video or even graphics. Today, or course, the online landscape is very visual and video-heavy.

Press releases have evolved in this way too.

So press releases are no longer just about getting an article in a printed newspaper. They are about getting your content in front of large audiences via mainstream media, and in various media formats! Who doesn’t want that?

How to Effectively Repurpose Your Content Into a Press Release

Benefits of a press release

  • You can tell your story in a different way than you are on social media and in a blog post. It’s a ‘news’ story and this is a different angle
  • You can reach a large audience via mainstream media
  • If you get featured in large publications, TV and radio you can add this to your website ‘As featured in’ which helps you establish more credibility. People actually do care about these things!

What’s more, Sally made some great points that news rooms are not what they used to be. Newspapers and TV stations were really affected by the internet.

There are less journalists and reporters than there used to be. Those left still need to find lots of content to report on. So we find there are news rooms with less people having to create more content.

They are interested in press release content if it tells the story that people want to hear. 

Press releases no longer alert journalists to a story for them to investigate further (they don’t have time), you have to bring the entire story to the journalist, including visual content. Then, they will be interested.

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What is best way to get started with producing a press release? In particular, can you repurpose content already created?

Tips for repurposing content into a press release

  •  Look at the content you already have to work with. What content can be repurposed into a news story? What are your most interesting stories?
  •  Look with a critical eye, what is interesting and new? Do you have important statistics, unique services or products? Must be a story and newsworthy
  •  Avoid boring facts and think about what a reader would like to find out or enjoy learning.
  • As well as answering the classic questions for all press releases, who, what, when, where and how.  It is a good idea to include links to provide more information or download content. Make it interactive with buttons linking to your social media accounts.
  • If you have research that you have put into a white paper, that will be very easy to put into a press release.
  • Now is the time to show off your visual content. Think infographics, images and video links that help you tell your story. Your visual content must be relevant. You may be able to repurpose images that you have created already for your website and social media?
  • Think about what media you want to feature in. Wall Street Journal? Your local newspaper? A TV show? Find journalists that cover news where you want to be featured. Build good relationships with those journalists via social media channels such as LinkedIn or Twitter. Connect with them, engage with them and send press releases to them directly to increase chances of being noticed. Building relationships and working with journalists directly is a good approach
  • Don’t clog journalists inboxes with huge attachments, put the whole press release on your own website and send them an email with the highlights and then add ‘Read the full release here’ and give them the link to your site
  • On Twitter there are hashtags that you can follow to look out for journalists looking for specific stories. In the UK #journorequest is the main one
How to Effectively Repurpose Your Content Into a Press Release

Content produced for a press release can easily be repurposed in a variety of ways and I discussed with Sally what types of content she thought would work.

Repurposing a press release into other forms of content

If you have created a press release, here are some content repurposing opportunites to get the most out of your work:

  • Visual content – if you created visual content for your press release use it on social media, your blog, and if you shared statistics can you create an infographic?
  • Blog posts – create a post on your own site or guest post on other sites. Most press releases are not long, so can you extend the story for other written content
  • Video – create a video about your press release. This could be for You Tube, Facebook, your website. You could even go live on  Facebook or Instagram to share your press release with your audience in an interactive way
  • Audio – if you create audio content, why not cover the content of your press release in a podcast episode      

If you want help on how to do any of these, then check out The Content 10x Toolkit. It's packed full of tutorials and checklists to help you fast-track your plans to dominate your niche with awesome repurposed content.

In conclusion

Press releases can form an important part of any content marketing strategy. Getting your stories into mainstream media can be an effective way to increase awareness and get your content in front of large audiences.

When looking to utilise content you have already created for a press release, it is important to always look for a story that people will want to read. What information will attract them? What is newsworthy? It’s not the story you want to tell, it’s the story people want to hear.

Always provide visual content to increase the appeal of your press release and the likelihood of the content being used and shared.

To connect with and find out more about Sally Falkow visit meritusmedia.com.


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