Creating and distributing a press release are generally the first steps of establishing a relationship with the media and doing effective PR outreach. A press release is more than just an announcement or advertisement for a brand. It is a way to invite media professionals and other people to learn more about your brand and the message you want to share.
While traditional submission might work to launch your PR outreach efforts initially, there are also online submission tools that you can use to scale up the reach of your press release beyond what you can do on your own through email marketing. These tools allow you to deliver your press releases to thousands of individuals and organizations quickly and effectively.
How many ways are there to send out a press release?
There are two main ways to send out a press release; sending it directly to journalists in hopes that they will create a story or publishing it onto submission sites. With the news industry changing so much over the last decade, submission sites have also evolved to stay relevant. These days, if you want to use these sites, you have to pay for access to their media contacts and channels. These sites also offer the bonus of building, updating, and segmenting thousands of media contacts for effective distribution. Along with that, many are now offering additional services like social media influencer access, media monitoring, and PR analytics. In fact, when you’re looking for tools to help with your PR analysis, you’ll find a wide variety to choose from.
Since online submission sites have become somewhat of a norm for press release distribution, there are paid and free press release submission sites available. Let’s assume your objective is to earn media coverage from recognized publications. Media coverage isn’t guaranteed when using free submission sites because of their basic nature. Hence, you need to set their expectations accordingly and look at the free distribution site as an opportunity to get a tiny bit of exposure at zero cost. On the other hand, platforms that charge for their services, especially the market leaders, offer enormous reach into major news and media outlets. Even so, they can be costly and they still do not guarantee results.
Pros and cons of press release submission
As mentioned previously, there are two ways of sending out a press release. While both hold a high level of merit, there are pros and cons to both. Some benefits of using a submission site versus sending a press release directly to journalists include:
- Its relative speed since you do not need to manually search for media contact information or write a personalized pitch to each media contact;
- Instant access to the world’s largest media organizations;
- Being able to target a specific niche or industry
- Syndication of press releases, which will help increase visibility
On the other hand, the downsides of using these platforms compared to pitching directly to media professionals include:
- Lower chances of media coverage results
- No direct access to journalists, decreasing the possibility of building relationships
- Zero SEO benefits
When it comes to the actual submission of a press release, the process is quite simple. Most services allow you to copy and paste your content into an online text editor. You can then upload whatever multimedia you want to include. In terms of outreach, most premium services will let you choose the types of publications you want to target.
The best time for press release submission
Whatever method you choose to submit your news release, you will have a better chance of success if you focus on the needs of the person receiving it. If you send your press release directly to a specific journalist, you need to think about the best time to send it out, depending on their timezone and schedule. Along with that, personalized emails will go a lot further than a copy-and-paste bulk email. When you submit your press release in a structured and engaging way, it will have a better chance of getting published.
Let’s assume you’ve chosen to publish your press release on a submission site. In this case, it appears “as is” on the platform that you submit it to, and it will then be distributed to relevant news and media organizations. From there, if a journalist is interested in the story, they will either publish the story as is or write an article, using quotes and other information contained in the press release.
Best press release submission sites in 2023
Pressfarm is a PR agency that helps startups and established companies create newsworthy content that ranges from engaging email pitches to winning press releases, compelling guest posts, and creative press kits. Beyond creating this quality content, the experts at Pressfarm are skilled at developing effective distribution strategies to put this content in front of the right eyes.
With access to a media database of over one million media contacts across different industries, you can connect with the best journalists in your niche. Once you’ve built relationships with these contacts, you can work with them to share your story with the world. Additionally, Pressfarm’s PR experts will submit your company to directories and review websites. This improves your SEO and helps you to gain exposure. Ultimately, by signing up with Pressfarm, you can boost your online visibility by featuring in relevant search results across different search engines.
2) EIN Presswire
EIN Presswire should be among your top choices when choosing where to send your press release online. This is because they have a track record of generating coverage from the biggest names in the news industry. With their extensive network of publications (both online and offline) and broadcast media, you will most certainly find something that meets your needs. EIN Presswire is one of the most well-known online press release distribution services.
Other than the press release distribution services, Newswire provides a comprehensive media database that allows users to build a customized media list for their message. This increases the response rate. Their post-campaign metrics in the analytical tool also help you make informed decisions about who to follow up with. This is one of the leading press release distribution platforms, offering broad-based newswire distribution and influencer marketing. Having said this, a Newswire subscription comes with a hefty price tag. Domestic press release distribution starts at $149, and global press release distribution starts at $1,649.
Presswire’s pricing is phased to accommodate a variety of needs and geographic targeting. Presswire emphasizes the importance of deliverability. They also provide technological optimization of press releases to avoid spam filters. With metrics like opens, forwards, and time spent reading, users can get a good idea of how well their message was received.
5) PR Newswire
PR Newswire is another popular choice for distributing press releases online because the platform’s reach can boost visibility and give users the coverage they are looking for. What’s more, this platform has a focus on assisting brands to reach new networks and markets. For this reason, PR Newswire can get a message in front of journalists and other influencers that other outlets might not be able to reach. Key features include access to over 4,000 websites, 3,000 media outlets, and 500 news content systems. This costs around $1000 per press release.
As a partner of PRNewswire, 24-7pressrelease.com shares press releases with its database of websites, platforms, and services. This could be a better choice for some brands, with pricing choices dependent on scope and turnaround time. However, the platform does not offer as many customization options for audience targeting and sending time.
The cheapest package on the platform, starting at $19, only includes publishing a press release on their website. The higher tiers will distribute it across AP and thousands of media companies. However, this second option will cost you around $389 per release.
PRWeb offers the same distribution and post-send analytics model as other platforms. Beyond that, PRWeb offers a wider variety of additional services designed to get a brand more coverage. As with the others, it does come with a rather hefty price tag. Nevertheless, the platform promises to generate increased traffic for a company’s site and higher online visibility from any press release.
As mentioned previously, there are also free press release submission sites that are based on a “freemium” model. This is helpful if you want to upgrade to a paid subscription down the road.
8) Online PR News
Online PR News is probably the most established platform out there for free press release distribution. They offer a freemium model, where the most basic press release package is free. When you sign up for this package, your press release is posted on the platform for 90 days. If you are happy with the results and want to get more media coverage and exposure, then you can get many upgrades for different levels of distribution and exposure.
With a similar model to Online PR News, the platform’s most basic package is free. However, with this package, your press release will receive minimal distribution on PR.com. Additionally, the press release is published on some third-party news sites and RSS feeds.
In the same way as the other free press release distribution sites, PRfree has a free-to-use basic package. It also allows hyperlinks, search engine indexing, and social share buttons. These features can all help direct recipients to other online PR materials users might want to share.
Other press release submission options
Even though online distribution websites are respected, many PR experts agree that PR outreach is still a more effective method of getting press coverage. Another way to gain media coverage is by getting a release distributed to major media outlets. A few high-profile news platforms can generate a large amount of attention for anyone with news to share. For example, you can try submitting your press release to platforms like Yahoo Finance, Associated Press, Reuters, New York Times, and Google News.
Yahoo Finance is a very well-known platform that delivers high visibility. The content on the platform is aggregated and taken from partner PR release services that Yahoo monitors. These include PR Newswire, Business Wire, ACCESSWIRE, and GlobeNewswire. Moreover, Associated Press is one of the world’s biggest news distribution agencies. If you plan to submit a press release to AP, you need to label it based on the categories available. Reuters is another distribution service with a global reach. If you’re distributing a press release to Reuters, you should contact their local bureau in your area.
While The New York Times needs no introduction, distributing a press release on the platform is more complex than all the others. However, if you believe that your news meets the platform’s standards, you can reach out to them and give it a shot. Last but not least, Google News is a central distribution point for content across several platforms. The platform has simplified submitting a press release and made it easier for organizations and individuals to distribute their content.
Whichever method you use to distribute your press release, one thing is for sure. PR outreach in any form is essential if you want your news to be visible to relevant individuals. Submission sites are also great. This is because they present an opportunity to submit your newsworthy content online at minimal or no cost at all. Be that as it may, startup directory submissions alone do not provide the same personal touch that comes from developing relationships with media professionals.