Press releases are time specific and one of the first things you see in any release is the date. So it’s easy to think that after a day or so they’ve served their purpose, and are no longer that useful.

But press releases can still bring substantial coverage and links long after they’ve been issued. Here’s an example of a release from a consultancy company, Technomic.com whose release got coverage and a very nice editorial link on the BBC, a full five months after it was released!

Let’s look at the article (published on June 9, 2016)  – Something to chew on – the rising popularity of meal kits:

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And here’s the release – (issued on January 6, 2016) Technomic study reveals global opportunities within meal kit market:

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The BBC article by Zoe Thomas explored the rising popularity of meal kits – and more specifically niche meal kits. As you probably know, meal kits are delivered to homes and contain all the ingredients, a recipe and instructions to cook a complete meal in your own kitchen.

This piece was very much an overview article – summarizing the market and then featuring a number of competing companies that the journalist found interesting.

The press release is dated January 6, 2016 – and the BBC article is dated June 9, 2016 – over 5 months later.

Detail from the release is quoted early in the BBC article,  “…the industry – which has its roots in Sweden – had $1 billion in global sales in 2015. And this is expected to increase to $5 billion...”

In writing such articles, journalists like to quote figures. Reliable figures give their article an air of authority, especially if they don’t have in-depth knowledge in the topic they’re writing about. And that’s a common problem for journalists whose job means having to write well about many different topics, often at short notice.

They’ll regularly turn to Google to research the background for their piece and this is probably how the journalist came across the press release from Technomic.

If you can imagine what a journalist might search for, and then you make sure your press release is optimized for those phrases, you stand a good chance of your old press release being discovered. And that can lead to more coverage for your company or client.

Now, we don’t know exactly what the journalist in this case searched for – but we can make a good guess.

For example, phrases like:

  • market study meal kits
  • study on meal kit market
  • research on meal kit market.

So let’s have a look at the Google results in an incognito window (I took these screenshots the day after the article appeared). First, ‘study on meal kit market’ where Technomic came top:

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Second, ‘market study meal kits’ where Technomic came second:

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And finally, ‘research on meal kit market’ where Technomic appeared fourth in the organic results:

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As you can see, the company scored well across all searches. A really good piece of work by Technomic and they got their reward with some great links. Using the Majestic link tools, I can see that 18 external domains linked to the specific press release page:

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5 Ways to optimize your press releases for future discovery

It goes without saying that your release should be newsworthy, but have you:

  • Looked for ‘evergreen content’ in your story that you can optimize for?
  • Thought about how your press release could be used – a breaking news story, but also a feature article, an opinion piece, an expert interview and so on…
  • Thought about the searches that a journalist might do if they’re writing about your industry
  • Made sure your contact details are up always to date so that if a journalist does find an old press release, they can still get in touch with you
  • Prepared to respond query to any queries you get from journalists – remember they’re likely to be under time pressure and the more you can help them, the more they’ll be likely to write about you.

What about you – have you got coverage from an old press release? If so please share your experiences in the comments below.

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