How to launch a Press Release

My team and I recently launched a press release unveiling RewardMe from stealth mode.  We spent 3 days and $499 writing the press release and achieved the following results:

  • 59,000 impressions
  • 1,500 reads (landed on our PR Web press page)
  • 114 online pickups (there were 114 online articles written about our press release)

Overall, my team is very satisfied with the results because of the media hits, inbound leads we’ve received, and the inbound links from external publications linking to our website: useful for SEO.

Who should read this post: the marketing lead or department at a startup that is looking to launch a press release

What you will learn: how to launch a press release that will generate buzz, create links, and drive results for a startup

PR platform that we chose

We chose to go with the Financial Package at PR Web.  The decision was made to go with PR Web because of a referral from a trusted friend.

A headline that creates intrigue

This is the headline that we used:

Silicon Valley tech startup RewardMe emerges from stealth mode with a revolutionary customer loyalty platform that proves measurable ROI for clients

The goal of the headline is to get writers and reporters to pay attention.  Because media sites are bombarded by pitches everyday, they have a short attention span and rarely take the time to fully read through an entire press release.  For this reason, we strategically chose the phrase “emerges from stealth mode” to capture the attention of the media.

A company emerges from stealth mode only once, which means that a media professional has a short time frame to choose to pick up the story or not.  If they hesitate, then they miss their chance and the story is old.  By creating the element of a short time frame, you can get media professionals to act quickly and make a decision to be the first to post.

Furthermore, we chose to include the phrase “proves measurable ROI” in the headline because it was the core message of the post.  It was our core differentiator against competitors, so we want it to be front and center.

Description that gives a controversial and data-driven summary

This is the description that we used:

RewardMe, a business intelligence platform for restaurants and retailers, has emerged from stealth mode and revealed client case study numbers that eclipse data previously posted by competitors such as Belly. Utilizing gamification techniques, RewardMe enrolled over 20% of its client’s customer base, and drove a measurable 2% bottom-line revenue increase – a better than 100:1 ROI.

We chose to name our competitor because Belly recently launched a press release about their $10M round of funding.  Our goal was to strategically ride the coat-tails of the press release and show that our numbers greatly surpass the competition.

Furthermore, it’s important to create the appearance of competition – gives the media a good story to write about.

Numbers speak louder than words, which is why we made sure to include our top numbers in the description of the press release.  Anyone can paint a pretty picture with words, but if you have the numbers and data to back up your claims, then it’s important to post it up front and center.

Body of the release

This is the meat and bones of the release.  It must contain the following critical elements:

  • Target keywords and phrases for SEO
  • 1 link per 100 words that links to a page on your website
  • Quote from a client that validates your product
  • Client case study that proves the value of your product

Above all else, write a compelling story

The body of our press release reads like this:

  1. Introduction to RewardMe
  2. Why RewardMe is a game-changer in the customer loyalty space
  3. How RewardMe works
  4. Why we’re different from the competition
  5. A case study that proves our value
  6. Why our startup will win and dominate the industry
Use the above model when you write a press release for your startup.

Target keywords and links

We utilize 6 links in our press release.

Each link strategically uses anchor text to make sure that we rank high on search engines for our target keywords.

For example, we utilize the anchor text “customer loyalty” to link to the appropriate page on our business website.

Quote from a client

We actually held off on launching our press release for a week to make sure we received a solid quote from our client.  A client quote can instantly validate everything that you’ve written in a press release.

This is the quote that we used:

Our continued work with RewardMe proves helpful to our business. RewardMe makes demographic information available to us and the average Guest check is more with RewardMe.

Alexis, Director of Marketing at MOOYAH

Potential customers and the media need to feel certain that your claims are true and that your clients will stand by your results.

Client case study

Last but not least, the client case study provides a data-driven anchor to your press release.  The goal is to get potential customers to download the case study and email it to their colleagues and partners.

A case study PDF is also indexed by Google, so make sure to host the case study on your website domain.

Use these tips to write a press release that gets results for your startup.  If you need any help, be sure to email me or to comment on this post.

Published by

Jun Loayza

Jun Loayza is the Chief Growth Officer at Bunny Inc. In his startup experience, he has sold 2 technology companies and raised $1M in angel funding. Jun lives in San Francisco, CA with his wife Kim.

9 thoughts on “How to launch a Press Release”

  1. Hey Jun, this post came just in time. I’m thinking about launching a press release soon.

    I’ll look into PR Web. The pricing doesn’t seem too bad at all.

    I like the breakdown of the body of the press release. Will use it as a model for mine.

    Thanks!

  2. Hey Jun, thanks for writing this press release tips up. I am awaiting a little more content on my page before I launch the press release. Do you mind if I ask you for some help when I launch it? Thanks.
    Kind regards, Trevi

  3. Hi Jun – nice post, thanks.

    Although the PR Web site says that the Financial Package aims “Publicly-traded companies wanting to reach investors, analysts and financial journalists.” you chose it for RewardMe. I’m wondering why you have considered this option rather than the Premium Package. Did it worth the $ difference?

    Best

    1. Hey Gustavo, I wanted to maximize visibility, which is why I chose the Financial Package.

      Furthermore, we were raising funding at the time, so it made sense to reach out to investors.

      I have not tried any of the other packages

  4. Hi Jun,
    coming back to this post after I first saw it on Location 180 months ago.
    My clothing company just launched last week and we are writing press releases right now.
    Thanks for the great post.
    Would you mind if I emailed you our first press release for feedback?
    Thanks again
    Jeremty

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