Author Archives: Emily Nelson

Content We Love: Backbone of Storytelling

ContentWeLove“Content We Love” is a weekly feature written by a team of our content specialists. We’re showcasing some of the great content distributed through our channels, and our content specialists are up for the task: they spend a lot of time with the press releases and other content our customers create, proof reading and formatting it, suggesting targeted distribution strategy and offering SEO advice. In Content We Love, we’re going to shine the spotlight on the press releases and other messages that stood out to us, and we’ll tell you why. We hope you find the releases enjoyable and the insights gained from discussing them enlightening.

mnr lead

The headline and the lead dive straight into the story.

#Storytelling

Growing up, the phrase “There are two sides to every story” echoed all around.
Being a writer and a content specialist, finding the story is the primordial base where magic exists.

To my delight, the impactful message about a state-of-the-art surgery from Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego leapt from the page because of how it was written, the visual elements, and the social media components.

Instead of being laden with corporate jargon and a “who/what/when/where/how” approach, the release made waves with great storytelling and more than just the kids took notice.

mnr photo galleryRight off the bat, the story leaps off the pages with video and images of the families. Paired with the technical (and readable) words of describing Early-Onset Scoliosis and how the magnetic rods operate, are videos and images that bring the experience to life.

  • On one side is the incredible feat of the surgery itself, clearly defined within the release. The words are compelling and easy to understand (acronyms explained, processes defined, etc). Yet on the other side is the human element of the doctors’ scope on their young patients and the family scope of their loved ones.

The images give a face to the message. This is not just an ordinary surgery; this is a surgery for Tommy and Anthony.

Images increase visibility on releases because humans are inherently intrigued by visuals. Including an image on your release is placing a bull’s eye target, which instantly attracts the line of vision.

Stop your audience in their tracks with powerful imagery.

And much like the magnetic rods, this release continues to grow.

The tale also took to social channels to spread the news.

Tweet: .@radychildrens performs groundbreaking growing rod surgeries for early-onset #scoliosis http://prn.to/10afja8

  • With search engines showing social results higher and higher, it is 100% in a company’s best interest to involve social sharing of news.

Much align to a story, there are two sides to social media: the share and the conversation. Social Media sites are buzzing with shared information (thoughts, ideas, articles, etc) to a collective group and these same sites are abuzz with conversations about the information.

In one swoop, the story transcends from viewership on news’ sites to the online social feeds. Not only is the message shared to a bigger audience, the conversation has started with just one tweet. From a tweet can come a retweet, a conversation, and a connection. Cool!

When penning a press release, reflect on the story it is telling. Add those great images and share the great news via social media. Share your story to the world!

Big thanks to Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego, San Diego Center for Spinal Disorders, and Ellipse Technologies for showcasing the backbone to storytelling!

http://www.multivu.com/mnr/61604-rady-children-s-hospital-san-diego-ellipse-magec-early-onset-scoliosis-eos

Author Emily Nelson is a Customer Content Specialist for PR Newswire. Follow her adventures on www.bellesandawhistle.wordpress.com or on twitter www.twitter.com/emilyannnelson.

Content We Love: 2013 January-March in Review

ContentWeLove“Content We Love” is a weekly feature written by a team of our content specialists. We’re showcasing some of the great content distributed through our channels, and our content specialists are up for the task: they spend a lot of time with the press releases and other content our customers create, proof reading and formatting it, suggesting targeted distribution strategy and offering SEO advice. In Content We Love, we’re going to shine the spotlight on the press releases and other messages that stood out to us, and we’ll tell you why. We hope you find the releases enjoyable and the insights gained from discussing them enlightening.

News. Content. Engagement.

The many reasons for sending press releases mirror the many types of releases we see here at PR Newswire. From January through March, we have seen a variety of compelling messages that captured our attention.

Social media campaigns, captivating headlines, riveting infographics, and compelling videos took center stage throughout the beginning of the year and the world took notice. These are some of the releases from January, February, and March of 2013 that we absolutely love.

 01. Pop Culture Pets: Veterinary Pet Insurance released the top names for our furry friends and the tale (or tail) leads to Twilight for inspiration.

 02. Riveting Headline: American DG Energy Inc. passed “go” in our books with this captivating headline. The energy agreement started its 15-year sentence at a county jail and served a conversation on social media channels to discuss it.

 03. Big Nominations: Kino Lorber’s release wins an award in our book for showcasing a video and pictures to accompany the big news of an Oscar nomination. From a beautiful film to a beautiful release, we applaud you!

04. Digital Love: Social media reigns supreme in recent survey from Match.com highlighting the technological advances to dating past and present. Will #tweetups and a digital date be next?

05. DIY Wedding: Michaels Stores released a budding romance for 2013 with the top DIY wedding ideas. While we were fawning over the ideas (and pinning the pictures), the video perfectly complimented the message. DIY puts the merry in merriment.

06. #GoAndSmellTheRoses: Around the world in minutes, Travelocity’s roaming gnome urges all to take the vacation of a lifetime. The new campaign features great visuals and an official hashtag. Inspired for travel, we all want to #GoAndSmellTheRoses

07. Free Food Madness: Shooting hoops isn’t the only thing on the menu for Outback Steakhouse. To celebrate March Madness, their bracket-tournament was for a free juicy appetizer.

Kudos — and thanks — to the organizations listed  for the pleasure of reading your phenomenal releases and allowing us to spotlight your stories.

Author Emily Nelson is a Customer Content Specialist for PR Newswire. Follow her adventures on www.bellesandawhistle.wordpress.com or on twitter www.twitter.com/emilyannnelson.

Content We Love: Using Visuals to Create a Seamless Path for Readers

CWL Banner

“Content We Love” is a weekly feature written by a team of our content
specialists. We’re showcasing some of the great content distributed through our channels, and our content specialists are up for the task: they spend a lot of
time with the press releases and other content our customers create, proof
reading and formatting it, suggesting targeted distribution strategy and
offering SEO advice. In Content We Love, we’re going to shine the spotlight on
the press releases and other messages that stood out to us, and we’ll tell you
why. We hope you find the releases enjoyable and the insights gained from
discussing them enlightening.

taters

A snapshot of the multimedia press release issued by the United States Potato Board. It seamlessly integrates multimedia with their own web site content, creating a widely-distributed portal back to the organization’s web site.  Click the image to see the full MNR.

Everyone loves food.

Cookbooks woo us with the colorful images of decadent cuisine. We salivate over each picture and build confidence that it would be easy to re-create the recipe. The moment of truth is finding yourself in the kitchen with smoke billowing from the oven and the realization you’re not Julia Child. Or maybe that is just me.

Visuals engage the reader.

Press releases, at their core, are to provide information. For the United States Potato Board, their Multimedia News Release* is geared towards not only sharing information and recipes, but dynamically engaging the reader with rich multimedia –in short, the visuals.

Ring in Spring by Using Unique Potato Types to Create Colorful, Nutrition Packed Dishes

There are many ways to showcase a message and tell a story with press releases. The captivating Multimedia News Release provides assets (photos, videos, PDFs, etc) to your release and therefore can increase your engagement with the reader.

Instantly the images of delicious meals fill the view but it doesn’t stop there. In tandem with the release are videos of different potato types, recipes, nutritional content, images, a connection to Facebook, and a logo combining the message with the assets, “Goodness Unearthed.”

We know imagery increases visibility, so what about engagement?

  • When crafting your story, having your audience take the next step and share/interact with your message is engagement.
Engagement is action.

Why is it important for a press release? To act, one must not only remember the content, but be inspired to act upon it.  For this release, the information takes a step further into a kitchen by way of recipes. The nutritional information, the pictures, and the videos all tie together with the message to create a truly engaging release.

  • Multimedia increases engagement. For your releases, remember the goodness of USPB and showcase your message using multimedia and social channels.

A seamless pathway for readers

The glossiest, most engaging multimedia doesn’t mean a thing if there’s no mechanism for capturing the interest your message has created.  In this example, the USPB integrated their own web site content into the MNR.  This tactic does two important things:

  • It offers readers seamless experience, creating clear path for them to follow, taking straight to web pages the USPB controls; and
  • Because the MNR is widely distributed, the USPB has effectively created and broadly circulated a portal leading directly to their web site across the web.

Big thanks to the United States Potato Board for a release full of goodness!

Want to explore new ways to tell your brand’s story?  We’d be happy to chat with you about creating a video or a designing multimedia distribution strategy that will increase discovery of your brand’s messages.  We’d love to hear your ideas, and help turn them into reality. Contact us for more information.

Author Emily Nelson is a Customer Content Specialist for PR Newswire. Follow
her adventures on
www.bellesandawhistle.wordpress.com or on twitter www.twitter.com/emilyannnelson.

Content We Love: Elmer’s Glue Sticks to Visibility

ContentWeLove“Content We Love” is a weekly feature written by a team of our content specialists. We’re showcasing some of the great content distributed through our channels, and our content specialists are up for the task: they spend a lot of time with the press releases and other content our customers create, proof reading and formatting it, suggesting targeted distribution strategy and offering SEO advice. In Content We Love, we’re going to shine the spotlight on the press releases and other messages that stood out to us, and we’ll tell you why. We hope you find the releases enjoyable and the insights gained from discussing them enlightening.

Visibility and Press Releases.

In a world driven by SEO and multimedia, crafting a story to stand out can seem daunting.  In music, many songs rely on a “hook.” This is what captivates the audience in a reasonable and simple way to maintain attention.

When I saw Elmer’s release introducing a new glue made from natural ingredients, I found the hook. It was pure music to my eyes.

Between the crafty headline and the multiple images, this release provided multiple elements we’re positively stuck on.

elmers

Elmer’s® Introduces First School Glue Made from Natural Ingredients

Headline: With many search engines indexing only the first 65 characters and other sites displaying the headline alone, it is imperative to stick up for your story and stand out.

Not only is the headline within the guidelines, it fulfills the three-prong search rule.

Three-prong search rule?

  • Have three key words/phrases to summarize the entire release. This will make it searchable and thus increase your visibility.
  • These key words/phrases will appear throughout the release and in the headline.

(*fun hunt: perform a search on your own releases by finding the words you think are most important to tell/summarize your story. Can you find your news?)

Images: We live in a world of images. Visuals aid in sharing the news and giving a tangible context to the words.

Including images on your release not only make the story “pop” but also showcase the story through a different platform. Our visual world demands visuals and with Elmer’s introduction of a new product, the imagery sticks with you.

How does adding images increase your visibility?

Our eyes are glued to pictures.

The target audience will automatically check out the images if images are available. PR Newswire’s analytics found that adding just one image increases the visibility 1.8X.

Press releases take your news on an adventure. It travels across search engines, consumers, the media, and more. Remember to add a headline with a hook and imagery to captivate attention.

Thanks to Elmer’s(R) Products, Inc. for providing a release we’re glued to.

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/elmers-introduces-first-school-glue-made-from-natural-ingredients-200905731.html

Author Emily Nelson is a Customer Content Specialist for PR Newswire. Follow her adventures on www.bellesandawhistle.wordpress.com or on twitter www.twitter.com/emilyannnelson.

Content We Love: The Boot Campaign’s Bold Video

ContentWeLove

“Content We Love” is a weekly feature written by a team of our content specialists. We’re showcasing some of the great content distributed through our channels, and our content specialists are up for the task: they spend a lot of time with the press releases and other content our customers create, proof reading and formatting it, suggesting targeted distribution strategy and offering SEO advice. In Content We Love, we’re going to shine the spotlight on the press releases and other messages that stood out to us, and we’ll tell you why. We hope you find the releases enjoyable and the insights gained from discussing them enlightening.

What Can You Do in 90 Seconds? Through Pushups for Charity, in 90 Seconds you can make a life-changing impact on the lives of veterans healing from a variety of physical and emotional wounds. Pushups for Charity is an annual fitness competition which aims to raise $1 million to support the mission of the Boot Campaign. Your participation will provide Housing, Jobs, Wellness, Urgent Assistance and Family Support to wounded service members, past and present, through the Boot Campaign. http://www.PushupsForCharity.com

A hard workout with sweat dripping from your brow.

In the name of fitness, we push ourselves to new levels and new goals. If you’re anything like me, you feel the best pushing yourself physically to new feats.

When I saw The Boot Campaign’s release challenging all to 90 seconds of push-ups to benefit the military returning from combat, I was instantly drawn in.

The story itself captures the attention with the proper use of bolding.

Why be so bold?

Written word differs from spoken word (obviously) but there are key important details within a story. The solution? Emphasize the important details in text with bolding.

What is bolded in this press release?

  • Pushups for Charity
  • aims to raise $1 million to fulfill the mission of the Boot Campaign
  • May 18, 2013
  • Visit www.PushupsForCharity.com to search for a Pushups for Charity event being held in your community

Showcasing the major points, The Boot Campaign made the details jump off the page using bolding. Highlight the main points of your story in the release and aid the viewer with the key points to remember!

The release also featured multimedia aspects which took the story from pumping iron to pumping gold.

With the knowledge that multimedia not only increases visibility but also leaves a lasting impression, how imperative it is to add these components!

*But why include a video WITH a release?

Not only does video attract viewership, gain visibility, and tell the story,
but it expands your reach.

Different websites house and host different types of content. There will be websites reposting just the text, the images, and some will post solely a video.

  • Reaching different audiences through different platforms is visibility multiplication.

No matter the story, adding key bolding and multimedia components win the gold, 90 seconds or less.

Big thanks to The Boot Campaign for sharing your release with us!

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/what-can-you-accomplish-in-90-seconds-through-pushups-for-charity-you-can-help-military-returning-from-combat-200914371.html

Author Emily Nelson is a Customer Content Specialist for PR Newswire. Follow her adventures on www.bellesandawhistle.wordpress.com or on twitter www.twitter.com/emilyannnelson.

Content We Love: Travelocity’s Photo Adventure

ContentWeLove

There is something special about traveling. New places. New food. Once-in-a-lifetime opportunities that impact you. For me, the beauty is having a camera strapped and ready in my hand. Vacations require photos!

Travelocity’s New Brand Campaign Urges Consumers To ‘Go & Smell the Roses’

When I saw Travelocity’s new campaign, I was instantly wanting to book a vacation.  On the release, Travelocity takes its iconic Roaming Gnome to great heights by having an adventure and capturing it! Laid before my eyes were beautiful images of foreign lands to go hand-in-hand with the message.

#GoSmellTheRoses

cwl gnome

n his latest ad campaign the Travelocity Roaming Gnome is dropped into a scene from the world famous running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain. (PRNewsFoto/Travelocity)

Within this release, the different adventures, travels, and trips are not only outlined with an enthused tone throughout, but showcase the travel options with unique photos and a video.

  • Would you buy a house without first seeing it?
  • Would you book a vacation without first scoping out the area?

Images are important!

So what does this mean for press releases?

When telling your story (via a press release), it is imperative to show your audience the full story so they can understand. And given the point that “pictures are worth 1,000 words,” adding images and video will instantly attract viewers.  We are visual people in a visual world.

The icing of the touring cake is the hashtag #GoSmellTheRoses which transports the campaign to social media channels. Not only can you view the video on the release, but you can also see the YouTube channel which hosts a video of the Roaming Gnome in each destination mentioned!

Including your content on multiple channels (and connecting them) presents your message on a wider platform. This introduces your message to an ever bigger audience. It is like learning a greeting in a new language.

Guten Tag, Social Media!

Thank you to Travelocity for taking us places with your multimedia adventures!

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/travelocitys-new-brand-campaign-urges-consumers-to-go–smell-the-roses-196688271.html

Author Emily Nelson is a Customer Content Specialist for PR Newswire. Follow her adventures on www.bellesandawhistle.wordpress.com or on twitter www.twitter.com/emilyannnelson.

Content We Love: Social@Ogilvy’s #SocialMediaWin

ContentWeLoveImagine an event full of people. Our modern world has supplied social media in their hands and each individual has a story to tell. Now harness that visually– each person is firing photos via social media and all using one unified hashtag to make it searchable…

#DOAUSTIN

Social Media + Press releases!

When I read the headline from Social@Ogilvy, I was instantly stopped in my tracks.  Social@Ogilvy and Chute: Capture, Create and Share with #DOAustin

Not only will social media be utilized at the interactive festival in ATX, but Social@Ogilvy prepared a release to showcase their efforts AND
shared the components!

If your company is using social media for events, for communicating, for interacting, include it in your press releases! It invites your readers to join in the conversations already happening, the pictures already being posted, and the networks already being used!

  • Why include social media?

Social Media is your online community, your networking neighbors.  In short, it is the audience for the message! Social@Ogilvy is taking its instagram interaction and letting it grow into an even bigger movement. The release included not only was the #hashtag, but ways to connect with the company itself through different social channels. (Remember, the bigger the audience, the wider the potential impact!)

What is a #hashtag?

A hashtag is a word or phrase that is searchable on the social media platform. Visible are the “trending topics” of what is being discussed and relevant content pertaining to specific interests can also be found on these channels. In Social@Ogilvy’s case, #DOAUSTIN will be searchable through Instagram and will be streaming the images live throughout the event.

Now that is cool!

So if social media is the audience for your message and your message is searchable (so interested parties can find it)… that is a #SocialMediaWin!

A hearty thanks to Social@Ogilvy for the #SocialMediaWin and the great release!

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/socialogilvy-and-chute-capture-create-and-share-with-doaustin-196083961.html

Author Emily Nelson is a Customer Content Specialist for PR Newswire. Follow her adventures on www.bellesandawhistle.wordpress.com or on twitter www.twitter.com/emilyannnelson.

Content We Love: Michaels Stores Crafting Multimedia

ContentWeLove

Coloring was my favorite activity as a kid.  In the lines, outside the lines, I loved for my world to POP with a panoply of hues.  When I read Michaels’ Announcement of Top 2013 DIY Wedding Ideas, the color leapt from the page and I could not contain my glee!

Photos! Video! Bullets!
Pure joy to my technicolor world!

Michaels Stores' press release made robust use of multimedia, but the text of the release was formatted to capture reader attention, as well.

Michaels Stores’ press release made robust use of multimedia, but the text of the release was formatted to capture reader attention, as well.

Telling your story can call for the assistance of multimedia. In Michaels Stores’ case, showcasing the 2013 DIY wedding ideas (complete with color schemes) included a visually compelling press release that incorporated images, a movie, and bullets.

Whether it’s a company logo, an individual, an event, an infographic, or photos of great wedding ideas, images increase the visibility of a press release. We are drawn to pictures!

And if pictures are worth 1,000 words…
what does that mean for a video?!

A press release will paint a picture. The words leap from the page, the visuals showcase the news, but a video? A movie is the mini-story, the bonus features, the blooper reel we are instantly drawn to and captivated by. 

*Including a video in your release takes your message to another level. You’re making your content come alive for each reader and allowing your message to cross the threshold to more platforms.

Michaels Stores colored outside the lines with including bullet points within the press release.

Amending the text-block approach, Michaels broke up the message into bite sized pieces. Having bullet points are the pauses in public speaking. They are the breaks in text to allow easier readability of your news.

  • In short, the inclusion of bullet points within your release aids for each reader to fully grasp your message.

When crafting your release, don’t forget to add the multimedia elements to make your story pop! Break up your message using bullet points for readability. Best part? You can join in the DIY fun!

Thank you Michaels Stores for the great release with party favors.

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/michaels-announces-top-2013-diy-wedding-ideas-191751081.html

Author Emily Nelson is a Customer Content Specialist for PR Newswire. Follow her adventures on www.bellesandawhistle.wordpress.com or on twitter www.twitter.com/emilyannnelson.

Content We Love: Liquid-Plumr’s Romantic Infographics

ContentWeLove“Content We Love” is a weekly feature written by a team of our content specialists. We’re showcasing some of the great content distributed through our channels, and our content specialists are up for the task: they spend a lot of time with the press releases and other content our customers create, proof reading and formatting it, suggesting targeted distribution strategy and offering SEO advice. In Content We Love, we’re going to shine the spotlight on the press releases and other messages that stood out to us, and we’ll tell you why. We hope you find the releases enjoyable and the insights gained from discussing them enlightening.

Visualize Romance.

Sometimes chocolates. Sometimes flowers.
Sometimes dinner or laughter for hours.
But all that she wants… is a clean house?

Liquid-Plumr’s recent survey, Not The Turn-Off You’d Expect, Doing Household Chores Actually Turns-Up The Romance uncovered the dirt on what women really want and showcased the results in not one, but TWO infographics!

LIQUID-PLUMR UNCLOG INFO 2An infographic goes beyond the traditional image by way of providing text and information in an exciting way. It boosts the appeal of your message instantly.

*Infographics on a press release are like finding a pot of gold beneath a rainbow. Our visual world has readers accustomed to images, color, motion, and brilliant displays. There is no reason your press release should be the exception!

Providing visual elements to your press release also allow the readers to take a further step utilizing social media. Instantly, readers can pin the infographics (to Pinterest). This automatically back-links directly to the press release on the social-sharing site. (This means when someone clicks on the image, they’ll be re-directed to the original site it came from… your release.)

New Survey from Liquid-Plumr(R) Reveals Women Unclog Their Minds While Clearing Drains (PRNewsFoto/Liquid-Plumr)

New Survey from Liquid-Plumr(R) Reveals Women Unclog Their Minds While Clearing Drains (PRNewsFoto/Liquid-Plumr)

Showcasing your content in a visually dynamic way and utilizing social forums and platforms ensures your story reaches a broader audience. In short, tell your story to the world in every way possible!

Is your brand on social channels? Are you sharing the content broadly? Using your storytelling powers on every platform?

Who knew household chores could be this exciting?!

A big thank you to Liquid-Plumr for wooing us with these incredible infographics.

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/not-the-turn-off-youd-expect-doing-household-chores-actually-turns-up-the-romance-190661171.html

Author Emily Nelson is a Customer Content Specialist for PR Newswire. Follow her adventures on www.bellesandawhistle.wordpress.com or on twitter www.twitter.com/emilyannnelson.

Content We Love: 5 Broken Cameras’ Multimedia

“Content We Love” is a weekly feature written by a team of our content specialists. We’re showcasing some of the great content distributed through our channels, and our content specialists are up for the task: they spend a lot of time with the press releases and other content our customers create, proof reading and formatting it, suggesting targeted distribution strategy and offering SEO advice. In Content We Love, we’re going to shine the spotlight on the press releases and other messages that stood out to us, and we’ll tell you why. We hope you find the releases enjoyable and the insights gained from discussing them enlightening.

5 broke cameras

And the 2013 Academy Award Nominees are…

Oscar season. To me, it is a reason to celebrate. Every year the scenario is the same, my ballot sheet is printed and come the last Sunday in February, I stand in anticipation to learn who are the winners.

  • The motion picture industry shapes our lives. Dinner and movies shape “date night” and when we peruse the news, video and images seek our attention.

So how fitting: my gaze could not be broken when the multimedia assets on 5 BROKEN CAMERAS Nominated for Oscar® captured my attention.

How fitting it is to have key images
and the movie trailer on the actual release!

The goal of issuing content is to:

  1. have people read it
  2. have people act on it
  3. have people remember it

Chances are, if you’re sending a release, you have a message, a story to share. The hopes are that people will not only see it, but read it, act on it (share, print, comment, etc), and also remember it. And what is memorable? Multimedia!

*Including multimedia components increases the visibility of your message.

Why?

People are drawn to images and videos!

5 BROKEN CAMERAS Nominated for Oscar®, a release about a documentary, scored well in my book for compiling not just an image or two, but including the movie trailer.

The release combines the information of being Oscar-nominated and the story of Emad Burnat– and gives every single reader the opportunity to share in the experience, by way of the 2 minute trailer!

As you know, we live in an instant-gratification type of world. The likelihood of someone searching for a video versus pressing play on the same page as the release definitely favors the latter. If you have available video, available images, infographics, etc– add them! No more expecting people to search for your information… deliver it directly!

If pictures are worth a thousand words, keep the conversation going on your release with multimedia components!

Big thanks to Kino Lorber for letting us share in the story and the release and congratulations on the Oscar nomination!

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/5-broken-cameras-nominated-for-oscar-189105081.html

Author Emily Nelson is a Customer Content Specialist for PR Newswire. Follow her adventures on www.bellesandawhistle.wordpress.com or on twitter www.twitter.com/emilyannnelson.