To get on customers' radar — and then get them in the door — you need a strategy for getting your business's story out. Blog posts and press releases are both effective ways to do this, but they're ultimately very different methods of communication. To use them well, first understand their nuances and have a plan for rolling them out.
Here's a rundown of blogs vs. press releases, and how to use both to their fullest potential:
Blog Posts: Informal Updates and Customer Advice
Successful business blogs will showcase a business's personality and strengths, and encourage interaction from readers — usually in the form of comments or feedback. Blogs usually target existing or prospective customers. For instance, people who are already searching for a company like yours online might check out your website and click on your blog to find out more. A few engaging blog posts, whether they're helpful, entertaining, or both, can make a positive impression.
For example, Virginia-based Powell's Plumbing publishes practical tips for homeowners troubleshooting common plumbing issues, such as "Do You Have Drains and Water with a Foul Odor? Top 3 Reasons Why" to establish the company as an authority in the field and show that they want to be helpful. The blog also mixes in fun posts on topics such as the history of indoor plumbing. The tone is warm but professional, and personalizes the company to the reader.
Press Releases: Newsworthy Announcements
A press release is more formal and direct. Its purpose is to share information about a newsworthy business event, such as:
- Launching an unusual new product line or service.
- Expanding a current business.
- Opening a second location.
- Winning a business award.
- Achieving a milestone, like 50 years in business.
Businesses and individuals may distribute their own press releases online, through paid services like PRNewswire or for free through sites like PRWeb. Local media publications scan these sites for newsworthy events and may decide to feature your news. To help draw attention, you may even send your press release directly to community media outlets. Getting a media spotlight on your business can bring your name to new prospects and generate more interest in your business.
Releases typically include an informative headline and subhead. The body of the release includes all the essential details, along with some enthusiastic quotes from the business principal. After the body copy, releases typically include a short summary of the business — what it does and where it is located, for instance. Releases may include images or a video link to help illustrate the exciting news you want to share.
Tell Your Company Story Through Both
If a topic is event-driven and newsworthy, share the information in a press release. If the information is educational, editorial or evergreen, publish a blog post and promote it through social media accounts using relevant hashtags.
Blog posts and press releases are both valuable online marketing tools with two different formats and purposes. Combine them to present a strong content marketing message that helps grow your business.