Monday poll: Should news releases be targeted at end users?

Should news releases be written and distributed specifically with final audiences, such as consumers in mind, bypassing all journalistic intervention? Or are news releases just for the media? Perhaps they are a good way to get an unadulterated message direct to your customers/prospects/investors? Or are there other, better vehicles to do that meaning news releases should have one sole audience – the media?

  • If your news release is written in a journo-pandering style, it is likely said journo will have to take a mental step to envisage your news in print.
    I always see the ultimate goal of a press release as being printed, word for word, in a target publication. Sharp, targetted, informative copy that’s well written and structured correctly is certain to create more buzz than a half-baked attempt.
    But I agree that there are other methods of getting journalists interested in a story – such as stunts, blogs, surveys etc. In these cases, PR becomes less obvious.
    The key is using all the methods available, and striking a balance between them all.

  • I agree with that.
    Actually what I’m driving at here is not whether press releases are a good way to reach reporters (there’s a whole debate about the press release being ineffective which I’m not intending to raise here), more that given the Google juice value of news releases, and now companies like PRWEB adding trackbacks etc, are releases being subverted to go direct to consumer/end user? Are they becoming a form of DM in their own right? If so, shd we draft them accordingly? And add keywords and meta tags so those folk can find them?
    Or are they the express domain of reporters who are their sole audience?

  • Powlo

    I think the idea that any significant volumes of consumers will ‘consume’ information from a press release via the web or RSS is off the mark.
    More than ever consumers want stimuli and the ability to experience a product or service immediately and on their terms. The best evidence of this is in the continued explosion and diversity of consumer publications.
    Will an RSS feed from a press release sell your 62″ TV better than say pictures and editorial in Wallpaper magazine?
    Press releases in the web ‘o’ sphere are for the few, and the few that would probably use words like web ‘o’ sphere. If the press release is to become a piece of DM it needs to evolve significantly.
    Are we not talking about a viral anyway?