Comments on Press Releases

Tom Murphy(PR Tom) is talking about press releases and sending out releases via email. I’ve noticed with some newspapers that our (IrelandOffline) press releases get sent straight into the junkmail folder of their mailboxes. I was told this by a friend that happened to be doing some sysadmin work on their computers when he noticed our press release in the junk folder. Perhaps they’re sick of our releases about broadband and instead of asking to be removed from our mailings they just blocked us or perhaps their spam filters. Though it could also be badly configured spam filters who block anything that’s not got their email address in the “To:” field. Maybe we need to alter our mailing list management software to do this.

The main news sources always pick us up, which is comforting. It seems to be regional ones that might not get our mails. What I’ve found is that the likes of other journalists and radio stations will get on to us maybe 24 hours after our release after reading it in a paper or an online news source. For a voluntary group like IrelandOffline this allows us a bit if a breather.

What we’ve also been doing of late is adding on unique quotes for certain news orgs so they don’t just reprint the press release and are the same as everyone else. I think the journalists like this more, the ones who dislike copying and pasting that is.

Regarding subjectlines, all our press releases have the subject line begining with [Release] – Example: [Release] OECD Broadband Report – Ireland 27 Out of 30 for Value , generally something short and to the point.

Using RSS for news feeds is a good idea. I subscribe using BlogLines to a few newswires that have RSS feeds and they are very worthwhile. Perhaps we can get our overworked webmaster to look into it. The trouble with RSS is the News org needs to find you and add you to their subscription and not the other way round. Email was quite handy for allowing the person doing the release to take some of the journalists workload.

Link: The IrelandOffline Press Release Archive Online

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