The new deadline
One of the most common questions we are asked at Medianet is when is the best time or day to send a press release. Ask different people and they will all tell you different things. "Tuesdays" used to be the magic day for sending press releases. "In the morning" also was a supposed trick. Just a few years ago this question was easily answered because of rigid print deadlines. However, in an online, social media and content-rich world, there is a new timeframe to work with - the 24/7 deadline.
While it is true that the internet and social media have made real-time reporting more prevalent, they certainly did not invent it. Newswire services across the world have been working to round-the-clock deadlines for decades and have built their reputation on providing consumer-facing media outlets with news as it breaks, 24-hours a day.
The reality is that the 24/7 deadline has always existed but until more recently, very few people knew how to take advantage of an all-day deadline. Below are a few guidelines to help you figure out the best time to send your press release.
The first criteria for a breaking news press release is exactly that – is your press release "news" and does it have an element of timeliness to it? If you answered yes, the sooner you get it out there, the better. There is no point waiting for another story to die down or for a certain time of day.
Your main consideration should be the production time the media outlets need to to publish your story. If your story requires verification, comment from spokespeople or, for example, if you are expecting coverage on morning talkback radio, you should send your press release with enough time for the outlet to complete their due diligence and still publish your story in a timely fashion.
Write your press release so it is ready-to-publish, include multimedia files that will assist the journalist in publishing your story like an article, ensure your sources and any spokespeople are ready to make comment and send your press release out on a Newswire to ensure it appears amongst the day’s breaking news stories.
When scheduling press releases, people usually pick a "clean" time, like 9:00am. To give your press release an edge, pick an obscure time like 8:47am to separate your press release from the others.
Examples of news now press releases: Company announcements, financial results, stories with a shareholder interest, when news-jacking a hot topic.
Quality content, anytime.
Almost every media outlet has an online publication. From major newspapers to radio, community publications and specialist magazines, online is the immediate publication option for every content creator – traditional or social.
Press releases are often the best source of new, planned content for these types of publications as they often need to line up content in advance to ensure they can meet the demands of a 24/7 audience.
Ensure your press release tells a great story - one you would be interested to read - and distribute it to the right target for the topic and you will get the results you are after.
Examples of quality content press releases: studies, survey results, human interest stories, seasonal stories, calendar-based events.
You’re off the clock or on holidays, but the media isn’t
Public holidays, school holiday periods, out-of-hours: we all have to clock-off at some point. But quite often it is during these periods that fewer people are sending through press releases and there is an opportunity for your cleverly written release, holiday specific story or timely tweet can capture the attention of journalists.
Weekends are great for standing out from the crowd and a holiday period is when original content creation is expected to be slower than normal and new opportunities can be forged. Plan in advance and use scheduling functionality to put your press release on hold until your preferred window of opportunity arises (just make sure there is someone that can take the phone call from a journalist if not yourself).
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