Finding that perfect balance between news and marketing. Taking care of the formatting and layout. Contacting the right distribution sources and reporters.
It can all be pretty uninviting (to put it mildly).
I hope that this 6-part series will help demystify the process and make writing solar press releases much easier – maybe even enjoyable?
- Part 1 deals with the “What” and “Why” of writing press releases for your solar energy company (regardless of your vertical).
- Part 2 tackles the “Who” aspect (i.e. for whom should you write your press releases).
- Parts 3 and 4 explore the actual “How” of writing solar press releases, including structure and examples.
- Parts 5 and 6 explain “Where” to send your press releases to gain maximum exposure.
What Is a Press Release and Why It Matters for Your Solar Business?
First, let’s start with the basics. What exactly is a press release?
That’s simple – a press release is a statement prepared for distribution in which you announce a new service, product, campaign, or event – with the aim of generating media coverage.
So why do press releases matter?
There are actually several reasons why solar press releases are great for your business.
1. Announcing New (and Old) Products & Services
Press releases help you quickly generate awareness of products and services in your line-up. This is the primary purpose of press releases.
Usually the products and services are new, but with the right spin, you can “remind” people of older offerings as well. Perhaps you added a new feature to an existing solar product or you’ve expanded your business hours.
2. Increased Credibility & Authority
It’s one thing to discuss your great new product on your own solar energy portal. It’s another thing if the praise and announcements appear on another site – especially if your press release has been reworked by a journalist.
Never underestimate the importance of third party, social proof. Obviously, people will know that your company is behind the coverage. But seeing a reputable, independent logo above your story makes it seem a bit more objective.
3. Optimal Coverage & Exposure
By distributing your solar press release to journalists and news wires, you maximize exposure.
Honestly, how many times have you visited Apple’s website to learn about its latest products – and how many times have you heard about the latest Apple product on your favorite news site or blog?
No matter how amazing your solar company’s site is, you’ll reach many more eyes if you publish your press release on as many outside sources as possible.
This is especially true in the age of RSS feeds since many people don’t even visit actual online newspapers anymore. They simply digest new stories through their feed aggregators.
4. The SEO Bump
Press releases have one other major benefit – search engine optimization (SEO).
This happens in 2 different but equally useful ways.
First – by weaving hyperlinks into your solar press release and distributing this article on other news sites, you get a ton of backlinks. Each one of these links is a “vote of confidence” that tells Google, Yahoo, and Bing that your site is an authority on whatever keywords you’ve decided to hyperlink.
Overtime, you can expect more traffic, better search engine rankings, and “hopefully” more business.
Second – you can piggyback on the SEO work of other sites.
- You write a press release about a new solar training module your company is offering.
- You publish the press release on your solar company’s website.
- You then have it published on 10 different sites. Let’s use Renewable Energy World as one example.
What often ends up happening is that distributed versions of your press release rank high in Google even though the version on your site doesn’t rank very well.
The version on your site might be #34 in the search engine rankings, while the same version on Renewable Energy World is #2 for that same keyword search.
Now, in theory, this might upset you. After all, you want the version on your own site to rank higher than anyone else’s. Combatting duplicate content can be a pain.
But what if I told you that the press release published on Renewable Energy World – not only ranks higher than your own site, but it also ranks higher than any of your competitors’ sites as well.
So even though your site ranks #34 in the search results, your press release (and thus your company’s exciting story) receives higher rankings since Renewable Energy World is a much better optimized site.
Press Releases Are a Necessary Facet of Business – But Don’t Despair
So now that we’ve covered the What and Why of writing press releases, you should have a pretty good understanding of how important they truly are.
This doesn’t mean you have to like them. Not many people do. But they’re unavoidable, and you’d better get used to them if you want your company to excel.
However, don’t despair. In the next few installments, we’ll dissect the process to make writing press releases a little less daunting.
Next up – the “Who” of writing solar press releases. In the meantime, share your own good and bad press release experiences down below.