Reaching out to the media is an important step of your app marketing efforts. No one will automatically learn about your app in the endless, roiling sea of apps that are vying for user attention and smartphone real estate. But a well-placed article or blog post can generate lots of traffic to your app, give you an SEO boost and amplify your marketing efforts like nothing else. A good press release is one of the things you need when you want to pitch your app to the press.
But since thousands (if not millions) of other developers and publishers are doing the same thing, writing a killer press release that will make your app stand out from the competition can be a challenging feat. Here’s how you can write a press release that will put you on a better footing to draw the attention of bloggers and journalists.
1. abide by basic writing rules
First of all, stay true to grammar and syntax rules. As a tech blogger who receives dozens of press releases every month, nothing turns me off more than a press release with typos, confusing grammar and unreadable sentences. Those are the ones that get thrown into the trash can right from behind the three-point line. You have to structure your press release in a way so that reporters and bloggers can quickly skim through it and glean the key elements that can make their story.
Using subheadings and bulleted and numbered lists can help your readers in finding useful information quickly. You can also bold type to emphasize some of the key facts in your press release, but use it sparingly, because overdoing it can make your text confusing.
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2. state what makes you unique
You might be able to speak about your app for hours on end, especially since you’ve spend hundreds and thousands of hours developing it. You think that every feature is worth writing about, and that every detail of the development process and your background as a solo developer who rose to fame with this fabulous app is something that everyone wants to hear about.
But while every one of those details might end up in the story that will be written about your app, you have to know how to prioritize and present your material in the right sequence.
The one thing you want to emphasize right at the beginning of your press release is what makes your app unique. What’s in it that hasn’t be done before? I usually don’t even read through the entire press release when I don’t stumble upon anything new in the first three paragraphs. While stressing on what sets your app apart from others, avoid exaggeration. That too, has a negative effect.
3. provide a peg for the story
Not all bloggers and reporters write in the same style or range of topics. That doesn’t mean you have to change your press release for every recipient. What it does mean though is that you should take a moment to look at your app’s press release through the eyes of the person you’re sending it to and consider how it fits within the context of the stories they usually write.
After that write a good cover letter that can help them find the right angle for a story featuring your app which their readers might enjoy. For instance, I never write single product reviews, so the plain press releases in which I’m BCC’ed go straight to the trash folder. But a good cover letter that states everyday challenges faced by consumers and how they’re being addressed with a new piece of technology is something that piques my interest.
4. avoid promotional content
You might want to provide a brief price guide at the end of your press release, but your press release shouldn’t read like an ad or TV commercial. After all, you’re not trying to sell the app to reporters. You’re trying to get them to write about it. So instead of writing a sales pitch about how you can get a 50 percent off by purchasing the app now, try to stick to highlighting the features and details that will possibly go in the final story. Leave the special offers and discounts for your paid advertisement campaigns.
5. a word on pr websites
Some websites like PRWeb and PRMac will publish your press release verbatim. There’s no shortage of these press release submission websites, but you should definitely go for quality instead of quantity. If possible, have a chat with developers that make apps like yours and see where they’ve experienced the most success.
Also, in case you’re considering PR submission websites, put a little extra effort to tweak the SEO of your press release. Choosing the right set of long-tail keywords and abiding by general SEO guidelines for content can help your press release generate more organic traffic after it’s published.
Getting press coverage isn’t easy. It takes planning, a lot of reading, certainly a lot of failed efforts and nerves of steel. But building up a good network and managing to get a few well-placed mentions can mean the difference between becoming famous and struggling in the app store muck for months.
Have any tips to add? Please share with us in the comments section.