Note: This is Part IV in an seven-part series I’m writing about Press Releases. Press releases are possibly an overlooked item in the enterprise social media toolbox, so I’m going to cover a few points and talk about how I’ve used them successfully for client campaigns.
I’m already on the 1st Page of Google for my name. Why do I need a Press Release? Getting on the 1st page of a Google Search for a specific person’s name, or a company name, is fairly easy to do without a press release. If you need more than a name to show up, such as a distinction or niche that sets you apart from the competition, a press release is one way to accomplish 1st page recognition for that niche.
Once time we featured a CPA’s “Enrolled Agent” status and explained in the press release the advantage his clients would had when it came to dealing with the IRS. At the same time we started a referral campaign using social media. In the 3 months following, he received nearly double the number of new clients from referrals than the entire number of new clients from referrals the previous year! He had been in business in his area for 20 years, so he wasn’t new news. However, we were able to take his status and turn it into news.
Incidentally, although the press release was a one-time cost, it’s still showing up on the 1st page of Google for the two keywords the client requested, over a year later! Long tail keyword research carefully nailed just the right phrases, so that press release paid for itself almost immediately with new clients from referrals.
If you simply want to dominate your own name on the 1st page of search engines, you may do it yourself by getting on a number of social networking sites. I’d still recommend investing in some long-tail keyword research, so you can include words and phrases that cover your industry, products and services. Your name will show up anyway. Common names like “John Smith” are problematic, so consider including your middle name or a nickname to set yourself apart.
If you are willing to wait 4 to 12 months, profiling yourself on 10-20 social networking sites will pay off in search engine visibility. If you can’t wait that long, press releases are a great alternative.