Friday, March 13, 2009

Press Release (PR) publicity angels

Stuck for Press Release Angles? Three Fruitful Ways to Brainstorm Publicity

by Marcia Yudkin

Many of my clients get excited about the power of press releases to attract
media attention, generate sales and move a site higher in search engines. They
engineer one or two big hits and get even more excited about the possibilities.
Then, despite their enthusiasm and success, I see their publicity efforts halt
in their tracks, because they have run out of ideas for additional press

Here are three methods I recently used to generate fresh ideas for a
publicity-savvy client who had suddenly gone blank in the publicity angle area
of her brain.

The first brainstorming method was using one known keyword to search in Google
News for news stories relating to the client's specialized service business.
This turned up several catchy new phrases that reporters are currently using in
trend stories (for example, "reverse brain drain"). Then I clicked on the
articles using that keyword phrase and discovered other catchy phrases reporters
are using, which in turn led me to some political news my client wasn't aware of
that relates to her business service.

So several things happened with this method. First, I discovered some currently
popular phrases around which the client can write some additional press
releases. Reporters read other reporters' work. So using those phrases in future
releases can get her company on the radar when media people search Google News.
Second, we discovered a political controversy and facts around which we can
tailor additional releases. And third, those keywords will be good to have on
the client's web site for "long-tail" search engine optimization long-term.

The second brainstorming method was using existing press releases on another
topic to generate ideas. Another client of mine had gotten excellent results
with a press release headlined, "7 Proven Strategies for Keeping Small Business
Cash Flow Positive During Tough Economic Times." We quickly came up with a bunch of great headlines using the frame, "7 Proven Strategies for ___ During Tough
Economic Times." What's great about this kind of approach is that you can take
things that are true in any economy or that don't seem to be timely and yet
pitch them interestingly as tips for right now.

To find existing press releases to brainstorm from, go to or, select a category that's different from your own business and
then have fun changing the headline so it fits what you do. Copywriters call
this method "swiping," and it is not copying - it's simply finding inspiration.

The third equally fruitful brainstorming method was going to a good article bank
such as, searching for her keywords and finding ways
competitors of my client have written up tips for the general subject area. One
of the article slants was myths about the topic. From the articles on myths, I
was quickly able to list ten myths my client could build press releases around,
one per release, using current facts and statistics, survey results from her web
site and her general knowledge to make her take interesting, unique and timely.

If your excitement about generating traffic, earning credibility and attracting
new customers from press release grinds to a halt from using up your ideas, use
these methods to come up with dozens more publicity angles in little more than
an hour or two of enjoyable exploration.

Publicity expert Marcia Yudkin is the author of 6 Steps to Free Publicity, third
edition, and 10 other books. She has engineered coverage for herself or her
company in the Wall Street Journal, Entrepreneur, Success, Women in Business and
dozens of newspapers around the world. Get free access to a one-hour audio recording in which she answers many common questions about using press releases at

Greg Cryns
The Mighty Mo Website Design and Promotion

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