Keywords: Finding the Right Ones to Open Opportunities

If you’re going to go through the trouble of writing an article, you want people to read it, right? Of course! You don’t just want any people to read it either, you want people in your target audience to notice the article and read it.

By using keywords that your target audience is searching for, your article is much more likely to show up in their searches and grab their attention. But how do you pick the right ones?

Look for phrases that are concise and related to the content of your press release. They can be 2-4 words long, any shorter and they will be too generic to stand out in search results. If you find that only one word seems to stand out as your main point, add modifier words such as cheap, best or a location to further target your phrase and decrease competition.

Use a Keyword tool: There are tons of websites that offer these tools, such as Google’s keyword tool, WordTracker or WordStream. If you want to know what questions people have relating to a topic, I like this questions keyword tool.

These show what people are currently searching for; what words are already drawing people in. Brainstorm general words about your news or product, then put these terms into the keyword tool. It will give you more ideas for related phrases, that you can sort through to find those most related to your business.

Google Analytics. This program or a similar one when installed on your site will show you what terms people are using to find your site already. Words that pull in the best results will be your best bet for inclusion in future press releases.

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Winners will be contacted Friday August 19, 2011.

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Foolproof Guide to Press Release Writing

I need to write a press release, where do I start?

If you plan to write press releases once per month or more, it is incredibly helpful to start with a basic template to base each new release off of. This will speed up the writing process and maintain consistency, giving you the best results.

Headline – Announces your news, product etc (with primary keyword) in 80 – 170 characters. This is one of the most important elements and deserves extra time and testing. It tells people why they should care.

Summary – A succinct explanation of your headline. Approximately 1 – 4 sentences describing the main point of the press release. This helps the audience screen the release, so tease and interest them.

First Paragraph –  In 25 words or less, share critical information that should stand alone without the headline and/or summary.

FORMAT: (City, State. Date.) – Company name, home page url. Keyword phrase that links to a webpage or blogpost that has to do with this press release story.

Body Paragraphs

  • These should consist of short sentences and paragraphs that give details about your news (back up your story). You can even include bullet points. The entire press release should ideally be within 350-600 words.
  • Include a call to action with a link. Insert what you’d like the reader to do and a URL to help them do it.
    • For example: Download the new iPhone App – now for sale at the iTunes store for $9.99 http://www.URL.com/iphoneapp
  • Use your keyword phrase 1-3 times in the body, and link those keywords to a related webpage or blog post.
  • Avoid directly addressing your target audience with “I” and “we.” Use “you” and “yours” sparingly.
  • Quote. Include at least 1-2 from a satisfied customer, CEO, members of your staff, etc. You can make up your own quote or pull one from an interview, blog post or article. Be sure your quote tells people the main value they will get from you or your service. If it’s the only thing they read, make sure they get enough information about you to motivate readers to keep reading or take a specific action.

Closing Paragraph – Restate and summarize the key points. It can also be a forward-looking statement about what is next or a statement about being open to interviews from the media.

Company Information

Contact Information – Include all social media outlets that you can be reached through online, such as your Facebook fan page, Twitter handle, blog url, LinkedIn Profile etc

Closing 3 Hashtags

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Contest Announcement! Enter to Win The Ultimate Online PR Kit (Value $97)!

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Deadline date: Thursday, August 18, 2011 at 11:59 pm Eastern Standard Time.

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