News Releases and Your Website
The Sprocket Report
Last time we talked about whether news releases were still relevant in today’s digital world – and they are. But BEFORE you send your news, make sure your website is ready.
More than a few times we heard about an event we wanted to attend and then couldn’t find any information about it online. We’ve even received news releases that included a website URL, but when we went to the site, there was nothing there about the news they were releasing.
No doubt such mistakes are merely an oversight – probably because the news release person was not the same as the website person – but oversights like that can really hurt your broadcasting campaign. So we put together a checklist of website tips so you can make the most of your next news release:
- Put ALL the details, however unimportant you think they may be, on your website.
Your website should be the official version to which all others refer. Editors will cut your news release or folks will learn about it when they don’t have pencil handy. And there will always be someone to whom you are new. Make it easy for them to get the information they need.
- Post the event information on your website BEFORE sending out the news release.
Assume folks will respond immediately after you have their attention. The details had better be there before they lose interest.
- Create a specific Landing Page that features just the event or news you are broadcasting.
Sharing this link will create a better-looking post on social media and will make the information easier to find in search engines when folks are looking.
- Write out your news or event info as text on your webpage rather than just posting the pdf of your flyer or news release.
Your mobile audience especially is not going to download a pdf. Make sure your details are in searchable text and are not just a graphic image of text. Once you have the text version, THEN you can add the pdf of the cool flyer you worked so hard on.
- Share the Landing Page URL rather than the Home page URL when sending out a news release.
Neither editors nor readers want to waste time wandering through all the pages on your website. While a long URL may look awkward in print, online news outlets will just use links. Also, your web pro can help you create a shorter URL if you prefer.
- Check your website analytics after you’ve sent out your news release.
Look specifically at what websites are referring traffic to you. You will see which news outlets are sending the most people your way and maybe you’ll find some new outlets you never knew about before. That will help you plan where to send your next news release.
If your organization is great at sending news releases, but not so great at getting the news on your website, talk it over with us. We have a team that will coordinate with you to make the most of your important news by building the right web pages and posting in a timely fashion. Let us help!