Is the press release dead? Well, the old-fashioned, stiffly-formatted, all-text version meant just for journalists sure is. I doubt that you’ll find many journalists today saying that they are anxiously sitting at their desk just waiting to read your press releases for story ideas. But, the press release is evolving in wonderful new ways right before our eyes. It is the age of the social media release. Full of links, photos, and now video, these releases have a much greater use—and impact—than ever before.
As communications advances, we’ll see much shorter releases with more video distributed through niche channels. While Facebook and Twitter are useful, they are becoming too generic. If the new social media release needs to engage journalists and consumers, then it needs to be distributed in a different, more targeted way. And we can never forget the need to impact the search engines. My colleague, Lou Hoffman, CEO of The Hoffman Agency, asserts in a recent Mashable article that the back links are everything that makes the press release valuable.
As one who has been in the PR business for over 35 years, the changes we are seeing today make our industry more vibrant and productive than ever. They are exciting as can be, and it is incumbent on all of us to stay not just current, but ahead of the game.