PR in the age of Zuckerberg is not so different than the age of Gutenberg.
News that people can use is still king when it comes to press release content. In a world where everybody can publish anything — and does — it’s helpful to remember that what gives your release the best chance of being noticed has not changed since Gutenberg fired up his printing press. Or maybe long before that. Message content that someone other than you, your boss or your mom finds compelling and interesting has forever been the key ingredient of any effective press announcement. Or any of your other content, for that matter. Which today means just about all of the stuff on your web site.
We live in the age of the so-called social press release. Which is a useful idea, to be sure. The fresher you keep the content residing on your web site and the more adaptable it is to the latest social and mobile technology, the better. Still, if attracting and holding the eyes of your ideal customer persona is priority, if you want to show up on their radar, your news must arouse their undivided commercial attention. Further, it must sustain their interest to the point of that they’ll pay attention to it and keep it in mind during their purchasing process.
What this means is that the content must pass the outside-in test: it must be written from the perspective of the top of your customer’s food chain — the senior-most purchasing influencer. Not your VP sales. Not your CEO. What is it in your announcement that promises to put more money in your prospects’ pocket and clearly explains how? Save them substantial sums? Give them a competitive advantage? Breaks down daunting technological barriers? Makes a skeptical reader hungry to learn more? Compels this busy reader follow you? If it’s not in there, don’t waste your time or theirs until you’ve included it.