By Alex Altman
You’ve crafted the perfect headline, finagled the just-right quote, triple-checked your spelling, and scored client approval.
By all traditional measures, your press release is ready for life in the wild.
But how long will it survive?
While quality content is important, it hardly matters if the press release isn’t sufficiently “shareable.” This wasn’t an issue 10-15 years ago, when generating awareness was as simple as sending an advisory to local media. But today, creating a buzz is more of a self-starting enterprise — one that requires both social media savvy and an understanding of how your audience consumes digital media.
Here’s a 6-point checklist for making your press releases more shareable.
- Get to the Point: The longer the content, the fewer the shares it’s likely to get. That was the conclusion drawn by Copyhackers, which analyzed three websites making a big impact with shorter content. A separate study revealed that users only get through about 60% of the average article before clicking out. The moral of the story? Be brief and keep the most relevant info above the fold.
- Visualize Success: According to PR Newswire and a number of other studies, news releases with multimedia, particularly videos and infographics, are significantly more likely to get shared than those with only text. Not only that, multimedia also helps messages connect with audiences.
- Click to Tweet: Click to Tweet links are a simple, yet effective way to get readers to share your content. Choose an interesting snippet, such as a statistic or attention-grabbing quote, and allow users to Tweet it out (with a link back to your release). Here are instructions on how to use.
- Catchy Headline: According to a study analyzed by the Washington Post, 59% of links shared on social media have never actually been clicked. That means 6 in 10 users are sharing content based on the headline alone. Make your headline catchy without being misleading — and ensure it’s Tweetable by limiting it 100 characters or less.
- Highlight Key Points: Readers’ eyes tend to wander when navigating digital content, so use visual cues such as highlights and buttons to draw their attention to the most relevant details and calls to action.
- Include Share Links: A fairly obvious tip, but an important one nonetheless. Make sure relevant social buttons (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) are integrated into your press release so readers can seamlessly share them on their personal channels.