Getting publicity for your small business may be difficult at times, but the two different strategies of writing press releases and opinion articles will create free, positive publicity for your business. The ultimate goals for using either a press release or an opinion article are the same and include:
- Improve the Search Engine Optimization of your small business
- Build awareness of your business, product or service
- Promote your product or service.
Press releases are official statements written to make announcements relevant to your business. For an example, if your business is co-sponsoring a community event, or is offering a new business or service, a press release should be implemented. A press release should include the facts of the announcement and the background information of your business. The distribution of press releases can lead to coverage and mentions from local and national publications, radio, tv, blogs, etc…
It is essential to DISTRIBUTE your press releases on your social media platforms and business websites in addition to using an online distribution service.
Unlike a press release, commentary/opinion articles are reflections of the author’s experiences or passions. They can present a new viewpoint on an existing idea, criticize or comment on an existing concept, or even give the author’s opinion about a certain topic. Opinion articles are a way for potential consumers or loyal customers to get to know who you are and become familiar with your business. You can reference experience within your own business within the article, thereby “quietly” building awareness for yourself as an expert in your industry and your company. The production of a commentary/opinion piece can add an element of humanity, and make your viewers more connected with you and your company/brand.
In order to “shop your opinion piece” around to potential outlets, you’ll need to acquire a contact list of Editors. You can either use a service like Cision or simply look up the specific publications you’d like to get published in and see who you should send your article to for consideration.
In summary, press releases are made to quickly grab attention in order to promote a business, but commentary/opinion articles are made to share the author’s viewpoints on certain topics. One advantage a commentary/opinion article has over a press release is that they can be written with opinion and objectivity. A disadvantage of a commentary/opinion article is that it is required to be a certain length, so if the article is perfect at 400 words, there will need to be adjustments to make it the appropriate length. Knowing the difference between these these two types of articles can help you decide which type of writing will accomplish your goals.
If you’d like to see an example of each type of writing, we’d be happy to email samples that we previously created on behalf of our clients…Just shoot us an email – we’re always happy to help!
Danielle Foley, President
Foley Marketing Advisors