Writing and distributing a press release is the first step to starting a conversation with the media that can result in the press coverage you’re looking for. Your press release is more than just an announcement, it’s your way of inviting journalists, bloggers, influencers, and others to learn more about you and the message you want to share.
In this post, we’ll go over:
- Press release submission sites vs PR outreach: Pros to consider
- Where to submit a press release
- How to submit a press release to major media outlets
Effective online press release distribution is key to getting media attention. There are two popular ways to share your press release.
👉The first is through a traditional online press release distribution service like PR Newswire or Business Wire.
👉But a second option has grown in popularity over the last several years: using an all-in-one PR platform like Prowly, Cision, or Meltwater.
While we provide all of the details below on how to use the traditional press release services (and even some specific information on the most popular news sites), we want to make sure you also know about the second PR platform option, because it offers a higher likelihood of getting your news published and can save you money.
Press release submission sites vs PR outreach: Pros to consider
Quality media results with more impact
Let’s address the news coverage benefit first. While a press release distribution service may get your press release posted by a few news sites, true media outreach with a hang-crafted email pitch to a targeted media contact list is much more likely to lead to high-quality and audience-focused media coverage. We’re talking about actual articles written about your brand versus the temporary posting of a verbatim press release.
And we promise that most PR platforms are super easy to use. No need to feel like you’d be getting in over your head.
Free and no-risk distribution for your first press release
Now let’s talk cost. PR platforms are accessed through a paid subscription but the costs compared to a large newswire service are often less.
Here’s an example: in the case of a platform like Prowly, you can take advantage of its free 7-day trial to distribute your press release while also testing its PR capabilities. If you like the platform and decide to automate your PR workflow moving forward, you can then subscribe monthly and continue accessing the media database you created for your first release!
Did we mention that they have over one million media contacts in their database that you can create your custom list from?
It’s at least worth weighing the pros and cons of a PR platform versus a press release distribution service.
But if you decide that you’re absolutely set on using traditional press release distribution services then, as promised, here’s where (and how) to submit your press release.
Where to submit a press release
Before you dive further into online press release distribution and submit your press release anywhere, it’s good to make sure you’ve got the format and content right. Here’s what your press release should include to make an impact →
If you’re looking to scale up the reach of your press release beyond what you can do yourself through email, online submission tools might be the solution you need. These are services that have the ability to quickly deliver your press release to thousands of individuals and organizations, giving you a reach far beyond what you could likely manage by yourself.
Discover tips and tricks for successfully getting your press releases published by reading this guide.
When using online press release submission sites, you’re paying for access to their established contacts and channels. They build, update and segment thousands of media contacts so you don’t have to. You just drop your press release into the streams they’ve created and they take care of the rest.
Online press release distribution services also deliver value by preparing your announcement to meet the guidelines of different platforms and mediums. This is especially important for technical reasons related to deliverability and landing in Inboxes rather than Spam folders.
Speaking of which, good press release submission sites will make analytical tools available that will give you insights into how your press release is received.
Here are some commonly-used paid online press release submission sites. If you’re considering outsourcing the job of getting your press release out to the four corners of the world, these are good places to start.
Press release submission sites
Here are the most frequently used press release submission sites:
- Ein Presswire
- PR Newswire
With a proven track record of attracting attention with the biggest names in the news business, EIN Presswire has to be among the options when deciding where to submit your press release online. Their contacts with an impressive mix of publications (both online and offline) and broadcast media are sure to include platforms that are perfect for you. EIN Presswire is among the most established online press release submission sites.
Upload your content, select the categories you want to target, choose from additional services like image libraries and editing help and, within four hours, your announcement lands in front of people who can amplify your message. A good starting price point (about $70) and an impressive record of getting coverage from major outlets.
Apart from the wire option, Newswire offers a comprehensive media database that allows you to build a custom audience for your message, increasing the chances of a response. Post-campaign metrics in their analytical tool help to inform decisions about how to follow up and with whom.
Presswire features a staggered pricing system to allow for different needs and regional targeting. With an emphasis on optimizing your press release from a technical perspective to avoid spam filters, Presswire highlights the importance of deliverability in reaching contacts. Great analytics give you insights into how your message was received, with metrics including opens, forwards and length of time spent reading.
Another popular choice for submitting a press release online, PR Newswire’s reach can boost your visibility and get the coverage you’re looking for. With an emphasis on helping you reach new channels and audiences, especially in social media, PR Newswire can get your message in front of journalists and other influencers that other platforms may not.
With pricing options based on reach and turnaround time, this might be a better option for some. As a partner of PRNewswire, 24-7pressrelease.com shares your press release with their database of websites, platforms and services. On the other hand, they don’t offer as many customization options when it comes to audience targeting and sending times.
Free press release submission sites
There’s a free version of pretty much everything these days, and press release distribution sites are no exception. You’re welcome to try them if you want to, but this really is a situation where you shouldn’t expect something for nothing.
Most of them are based on a “freemium” model, with necessary upgrades for an additional fee. If you want to experiment with these newswires just to see what you can get for free, here are a few sites that might help.
Start with free distribution and upgrade to paid packages if you wish. This service allows hyperlinks, which could be useful for directing recipients to other online PR materials you might want to share.
To submit a press release for free, all you have to do is to create an account. If you’re looking for a wider reach and more features, there’s also paid press release distribution possible.
If those three aren’t enough, you can also submit a press release for free at Press Release Point or Newswire Today. Again, keep your expectations in check when using free press release distribution sites.
How to submit a press release to major media outlets
Using an online press release submission website is typically a straightforward process. You upload your announcement, choose from various premium services on offer and then use tracking tools to measure what kind of response you get.
Better press release submission services will be as user-friendly and effective as other online tools you might use every day. While their price points usually reflect their reach and reputation for results, they all have the same mission—delivering your press release to a wide audience.
While the sites themselves are easy to use, you’ll want to spend some time deciding which is the best fit for you. User interfaces, additional services, price points, analytical tools on offer—all these and more will factor into your choice of which service to use.
Distributing a press release online via these services makes sense when you consider the time required to build and manage an effective contact database. This is especially true for smaller businesses that don’t have the resources to dedicate to this time-intensive task.
The cost of online distribution can vary depending on the services involved, but it can be a bargain when you consider the time needed to accomplish the same thing on your own.
If you’re still into newswires, though, there are a handful of high-profile news platforms that can get huge amounts of attention for anyone with a press release that gets their attention. Here are some of the biggest along with tips for how you can get your press release on their virtual desk.
How to submit a press release to Yahoo Finance
Yahoo Finance is a very well-known new platform, delivering high visibility. Their content is aggregated and taken from partner PR release services monitored by Yahoo. These are the partner services that supply content for Yahoo Finance:
- PR Newswire
- Business Wire
How to submit a press release to the Associated Press (AP)
The Associated Press (AP) is among the world’s biggest news distribution agencies. When submitting a press release to the AP, be sure to label it as relevant to one of their many branches and divisions (Finance, Banking, Real Estate, etc.). The AP’s preferred method for receiving press releases is by email, at email@example.com.
How to submit a press release to Reuters
Another huge news distribution service with a global reach, Reuters has a decentralized operation. When submitting your press release to Reuters, contact their local bureau in your area.
How to submit a press release to the New York Times
This media source needs no introduction and, based on what they write on their website, they don’t need press releases either. Still, if you believe that your announcement meets the newsworthiness standards of the New York Times, you can reach them at https://www.nytimes.com/tips.
How to submit a press release to Google News
Google News is a central distribution point for content across a number of platforms. As with so many other things, Google has simplified the process for submitting a press release down to it’s bare essentials. See for yourself at https://publishercenter.google.com/publications.
PR outreach as an alternative
As we mentioned at the start, despite the popularity of online submission websites, many PR experts will agree that PR outreach through an automated PR platform is a more effective method of getting press coverage and can save you money.
Even building your own media list from scratch and emailing a targeted email list may provide better results.
Manual PR outreach allows for a personalized approach, providing the journalist with news that is not only relevant, but valuable. Unfortunately, it is more time-consuming, but it definitely increases chances of getting media coverage that’s valuable and not just a syndicated press release somewhere on the Internet.
With PR outreach tools like Prowly, you can actually get contact recommendations based on the contents of your press releases and pitch relevant journalists that are likely to be interested in your story.
Cover photo by Priscilla Du Preez