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Press Release Creation and Distribution Tools

Contacting bloggers and journalists directly to pitch your startup works, but it’s incredibly time-consuming. Sometimes, a low-cost or free press release is well worth it, so if you’re considering investing in one for your startup, look no further.

Is a Press Release Worth It?

The truth is, many startups pass on press releases because it’s often hard to measure or determine the ROI (return on investment). That said, when done as part of a comprehensive media push, I’ve seen them work before.

Pushing a press release is just the first step in the process. When coupled with strong content marketing, content syndication, outreach to journalists, and paid media, a press release can add credibility and authoritative information to your outreach efforts.

How to Use Press Releases at Your Startup

The wrong way to use a press release is to write up a salesy announcement pushing your latest product announcement and spend a bunch of money blindly pushing it to mass media outlets. Instead, think about the following tips:

  • Go niche - target publications that are most relevant for your customers.
  • Make it an interesting story - capture the journalists’ imaginations.
  • Use relevant keywords - writers who cover a particular beat might find your company if your release shows up in their Google Alerts.
  • Layer content on top of it - use the release as a launch-point and do paid media, guest posts, and internal blog posts to help promote it.

The Best Press Release Services for Startups

Since press release service rates vary widely, I took to Quora and asked some of my newsletter subscribers to weigh in. We came up with this list of press release tools and services that aren’t prohibitively expensive, and might be worth your startup’s investment:

PRnob.com ($29) - Get your press release published on 10,000+ news and media outlets.

PR Buzz ($299) - While their package is a bit more expensive, it offers unlimited releases in a year. This could be a great way to test out several different releases and styles.

PRWeb ($99) - Adds some SEO juice to your release by distributing it on their site and others in their network.

Press Release Jet ($49) - They offer a low-cost package for startups that distributes your release to 250+ quality media sites as well as all the major search engines.

24-7 PressRelease ($49) - Their Visibility Boost package distributes your release to 50+ media sites, and lets you attach media as well.

EReleases ($299) - Guaranteed distribution on 75 media sites, plus they send your release out to over 100,000 journalists.

Newswire ($59) - They have a low-cost package without guarantee of pickup.

OpenPR ($0) - Free if you backlink to their site, and they’ll distribute your link to their RSS feeds and newsletter.

PR.com ($30) - Offers a low-cost package, but no guaranteed syndication.

PRLog ($0) - Free ad-supported distribution with options to purchase premium packages.

WebWire ($0) - WebWire hosts a list of trade journals organized by industry. This could be very helpful if you’re exploring a new market and want to know what the major news sources are.

Help a Reporter Out ($0) - If you want to skip the release and find reporters directly, sign up for HARO. You’ll get emails every day from reporters who need sources.

Muck Rack ($0) - While their paid plans don’t list pricing, you can search for journalists and look up their contact information yourself if you’ve got the time.

Did I miss a press release tool that you had a good experience with? Email me to suggest an update.

Karl Hughes

By Karl Hughes

Karl is a former startup CTO and the founder of Draft.dev. He writes about technical blogging and content management.