Numerous articles have been published, primarily in the US, about how Google’s recent major algorithm update affects the press release distribution industry and ultimately global public relations. According to available studies, the top press release sites—including PR Newswire, Business Wire and PRWeb—are losing between 60 to 70 percent of their visibility on Google since the update. It’s no secret that Search engine optimization (SEO) can be tricky, especially with the constant battery of changes and updates that stream from Google.
The Perils of a Fragile Model
What can we learn from the loss of Google visibility experienced by the top press release sites? It demonstrates the fragility of the model used by these major companies. In essence, they provide their clients with one thing: online visibility. It’s much like putting all of your eggs into one basket. Hence, they are entirely dependent on Google. When Google makes a change, their model is instantly and adversely affected.
APO Group has been and is the sole press release distributor in Africa since 2006. Their success has been contingent on choosing a different and stronger model. Online visibility is just a small part of the company’s media reach. In fact, APO Group’s Africa Wire has a potential reach of 600 million.
The Benefits of Leveraging a “Wide Angle” Model
Press release distribution and monitoring are vital to PR success. Like all other press release distributors, APO Group provides online visibility to its clients, with more than 50 African websites redistributing content. APO Group also provides international visibility with redistribution by Bloomberg Terminal, Thomson Reuters, Lexis Nexis, Dow Jones Factiva, and more.
Fact: The most effective PR tool in Africa is the mobile device. It reaches the broadest market.
APO proudly stands at the forefront of highly efficient and effective news dissemination. Earlier this year, the company signed a game-changing agreement. APO’s clients’ press releases are now available on 250 million mobile devices in 30 African countries, including the MTN Group, Airtel, Orange, and more. Client PRs can even be distributed directly via SMS.
Fact: Social media reach has grown increasingly important. In fact, Twitter exposure is practically a prerequisite for press release success.
Recognizing this fact, APO Group always posts a minimum of 3 tweets per release, using relevant hashtags to increase visibility and reach. Although the number of followers gained on Twitter is definitely important, so too is the quality of those followers. APO(@apo_source) is proud that the majority of its community is made of professional journalists or bloggers.
Fact: When it comes to press release distribution in Africa, APO has always seen the big picture. Instead of focusing services to meet the solitary need of visibility, they have chosen to focus using a wide angle. As a result, the company’s model is not derailed by the constant shower of Google algorithm updates.
Avoid Outdated “Do-It-Yourself” Company Models
The model used by major PR companies is outdated and over complicated. Most companies push the client into a “do-it-yourself” mold, forcing them to fill out a PR form and tackle everything from creation to multimedia upload themselves. APO Group is different:
- APO Group clients send all press release and multimedia content via email, and we do all of the work from creation to distribution.
- Text is unlimited, which means no additional charges for extra words.
- Multimedia content is unlimited and encouraged because it increases the pickup of the release. It doesn’t cost extra.
- Instead of using software to generate automatic reports, dedicated project managers oversee and manually prepare online distribution reports based on a -full- online monitoring, and not just partner websites posting verbatim. Reports can take up to 3 hours to create and include several languages, detailed stats, screenshots from social media (including tweets), and screenshots from Bloomberg Terminal, Thomson Reuters, Lexis Nexis, Dow Jones Factiva, even screenshots from Google Alerts generated by the release.
- APO Group professionals believe it makes absolutely no sense to create the online distribution reports only 24 hours after the press release has been distributed. They create the online distributions reports 5 working days after the distribution, so information has more time to spread in the media and more pickups are reported.
Most importantly, unlike outdated companies that primarily rely on online reach, APO relies on its 100.000 contact media list, which gathers journalists and bloggers based in OR reporting on Africa. Their media list is divided by countries and topics, allowing for seamless country-based press release distribution. Releases are systematically sent to all African and international journalists reporting on the highlighted industry or subject.
Managing a 100.000 contact media list requires strong expertise, including generation, indexation, enrichment and validation. It’s a very specific process, especially in Africa. APO has 9 full-time professionals dedicated to media list management. The beauty of this strategy is its lack of dependence on SEO, ranking and Google; it instead hinges on email deliverability.
Classified as a “High Volume Email Sender,” APO uses Email Best Practices and maintains an excellent Email Sender Reputation with a steady Sender Score of 99/100, which guarantees the best email delivery rates in the industry in Africa.
PR professionals will now be able to (re)negotiate significantly lower prices
Considering that the top press release sites—including PR Newswire, Business Wire and PRWeb—are losing between 60 to 70 percent of their visibility on Google since the update, PR professionals will now be able to (re)negotiate significantly lower prices.
A press release distribution service cannot be -only- an automated network of sites that copy and syndicate news releases online.
Read also: The main issue facing PR Newswire is ‘duplicate content’, not ‘quality’
The main issue facing PR Newswire is ‘duplicate content’, not ‘quality’
Here is a quick demonstration:
PR Newswire has distributed a press release headed “PR Newswire Takes Action Against Spammers with New Press Release Guidelines & Deletion of Low Quality Content”.
If you search that specific headline on Google, you may think that press release is only available on a couple of websites: http://bit.ly/1sJTTAL
That gives you a clear picture of the drop in Google visibility for PR Newswire.
That PR Newswire will be policing the content quality is good news (Even if that suggest they didn’t care before). But quality is actualy the least of their problems.
A press release distribution service cannot be -only- an automated network of sites that copy and syndicate news releases online. See: http://linkd.in/1nKT3Nd
See also on pushstar.com: ‘PRNewsWire and PRWeb Continue with SEO Troubles’:http://pushstar.com/prnewswire-prweb-continue-seo-troubles/