SEO Friendly Press Releases Essentials

In online marketing the purpose of the press release optimization is primarily to communicate as clearly as possible the message to its recipients, but also to bolster SEO efforts. Before starting to write the press release (PR) keep in mind the following rules to stay within the correct optimization framework.

1) Keep it Short and Snappy.  Users tend to read fast (most of them just the headers), therefore try to grab their attention by making your headlines and first paragraphs as compact as possible. Include your selected keywords in the first 50 characters of your headline and the first 115 characters of your first paragraph, as these will be present in the search results snippets. As a general copywriting rule you should  pay extra attention when writing to the headline, as there lies the 'bait' text for the rest of your article. Try to attract your audience with something valuable always including a strong call-to-action.

2) Optimize it for users & robots. Make your press release search engine friendly. As mentioned before the headline and first paragraph are the most important elements of a PR, but you also need to distribute you selected keywords within in your text, avoiding to become repetitive (aka keyword stuffing). Another rough rule is to hyperlink just a few times to your website, to variate anchor texts by preferring brand/product keywords (avoid generic keywords) and finally to make sure that all links point to the correct landing page of your website or you may be penalized from Google's Penguins and Pandas! Before you start writing, spend some time doing some keyword research or use the keywords you have already optimized your site for.

3)Target your audience. Communicate your content to your audience by targeting the correct online media, as your audience will drive traffic and conversions to your website. Segmenting the online media according their ranking ability per subject could maximize your efforts. For example, when you are communicating a sports press release, you should identify and prioritize the correct sports sites that could provide first page organic results.

Hopefully all three rules have the potential to generate traffic, but should you need further assistance in distributing your PR, just check some well established online PR services such as PRWeb and eReleases. For tighter budgets, however, there are many free distribution services out there and here is a great article/resource providing reviews and segmentations of the best free PR services.

February 2013 Vangelis Kovaios