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STOP sending out Press Releases

I was clearing out the letterbox at my home the other day after I made the mistake of letting it pile up for a few days. It was full of rubbish, junk mail, letters addressed to ‘the resident’, flyers from real estate agents and department store catalogues that I had no intention of reading.

There were two bills that I need to address but other than that it was a useless pile of garbage. Not too dissimilar to the inbox of a journalist sitting in any media house across the country. Piled up random media releases sent by disinterested, lazy and non-strategic businesses.

Why would you label your business in this way – as lazy and non-strategic? Sending a blanket media release might have worked in the 2000’s but it doesn’t work today. Resist the urge to send a blanket press release to all media.

Those who are in the business of selling press release distribution lists are selling lists that have no real value. If you don’t have a relationship or at least a tailored approach to the intended recipient, the list of email addresses is useless to a brand using them. In fact if anything they are quickly being blocked and diverted to junk.

It is better to send your news to five contacts, to whom it will mean something, as opposed to fifty contacts who don’t know you. It is better to be that bill than the useless pile of rubbish clogging the letterbox.

In a recent survey of 150 journalists, producers and presenters across radio, television, print and online, they told us they see the media release as an unfortunate hazard of their industry that has lost most of its importance. They are still used by many media but the distribution has changed dramatically.

The media today have no time or personnel to sort through and identify what is a good release and what is bad. They do have the time though to take content, releases, and information from people who they trust. People who they have previously dealt with, and who have supplied good content in the past. It’s that little bit of effort from a good PR that businesses benefit from.

The other major complaint about media releases from the media was the length and the failure to get to the point. The junk mail that was sitting in my letterbox was annoying, but it was certainly short and to the point – they didn’t let themselves down there.

This was the major motivation for Media Stable to change things up and get content delivered to Media the way they want it delivered. The Media Board product is a daily feed of content delivered to over 570 Media personnel. It’s short, to the point, trusted and received by media who we have relationships with.

The media release still has a place today but only when executed and delivered with care and with specific media in mind. Do this and you will get greater traction and you won’t be sent to the junk file in the future.

Nic Hayes is the Managing Director of Media Stable

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