By Peter Weddle, CEO TAtech
Every day, I see announcements on LinkedIn that this job board or that talent technology company has introduced a new product, developed a new capability or made some other kind of news. After that, it’s crickets. No press release and more often than not, no written communication of any kind. The net result is, at best, a modest bump in their reputation and nothing more. Which is odd given all the money that companies typically spend on promoting themselves. It begs the question: why are so many smart companies missing out on the simplest side of branding?
Let’s begin with a logical assumption. The reason companies make these product and capability announcements on social media – and especially on LinkedIn – is because they think the message is important. They believe the information in such messages helps to reenforce their brand as a solution provider that’s committed to keeping their technology at the state-of-the-art. And, of course, state-of-the-art technology is now table stakes in the talent acquisition market.
That reality is what makes today’s behavior by so many companies so strangely out of whack. The logical response to such a logical assumption would be for a company to ensure that its branding messages receive the widest possible distribution. And yet, all too often, that’s simply not the case. There’s no effort to beat the drum beyond the posting on LinkedIn and other social media.
Some companies do take the extra step of posting their announcements on their site’s blog. That’s certainly appropriate and does draw some additional attention to the message. In most cases, however, those that see the post are limited to the company’s current customers and prospects since they are probably the only ones who visit the site on a regular basis. And, that leaves every other potential customer in the dark.
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There is the option, of course, of writing a press release and then hiring a commercial distribution company to send it out.
• Admittedly, it can be a challenge to craft an effective release, but there are literally thousands of documents on the web that offer helpful guidelines. The secret to an effective communication for the HR/TA reader is simple: avoid technobabble and focus on the measurable improvements (i.e. KPIs) you can deliver.
• As for distribution companies, there are a number for you to consider, including Cision/PR newswire, EINpresswire and Accesswire. However, some TA solution providers feel that they are too expensive and/or that their distribution is not targeted enough at TA leaders and professionals to be helpful.
So, you’re probably asking yourself, why even bother with a press release?
I think there are two important reasons:
• First, it can be crafted into comprehensive, high impact branding message. In addition to the introduction of a new product feature, for example, it can include links to company videos and previous announcements. In addition, as one source notes, “Press releases help your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts indirectly by promoting content marketing discovery, building citations for local SEO, and protecting your online reputation.”
• Second, there are at least several outlets in the TA space that will distribute your press releases for free. For example, every week, TAtech publishes a curated list of five announcements to a global audience of 25,000+ readers. If a company’s announcement is selected, there’s no cost to be included, and the publication – TA Tech Business NewZ – includes only the first paragraph or two of the release and then links to the actual document to drive traffic to the company’s site.
Reenforcing social media posts with the (free) distribution of a well-crafted press release can significantly expand the visibility and impact of a company’s product announcement or other news. It’s the simplest side of branding, and one that every job board and talent technology company would do well to adopt.
Food for Thought,
Peter Weddle has authored or edited over two dozen books and been a columnist for The Wall Street Journal. He is the founder and CEO of TAtech: The Association for Talent Acquisition Solutions.