Every month, Cision takes a look at the top performing press releases on prnewswire.com – that is, those press releases that get high amounts of views and engagement (and more opportunities to amplify their message via earned media) – and analyzes what makes those press releases stand out.
From time to time a top performing press release resurfaces weeks or even months after its initial distribution. Such was the case with this story, first distributed via PRNewswire in January 2022:
Mark Cuban Cost Plus Drug Company's Online Pharmacy Launches with Lowest Prices on 100 Lifesaving Prescriptions
Nearly 10 months later, this press release is still among the top 20 highest viewed press releases of 2022 on our channel. While it’s not uncommon for a press release to garner substantial earned pickup and consumer engagement when the story itself is “big” news (and having the name “Mark Cuban” in the headline certainly helps), the success of this press release isn’t just floating on trending topics and name recognition alone.
Cision reviews hundreds of thousands of press releases cross our newswire each year, and we work with clients on a daily basis to craft compelling press releases that elevate their message, increase visibility and drive engagement. This press release checks almost every single one of our “best practices boxes.”
6 Reasons This Release Performs Well (That Have Nothing to Do With Mark Cuban)
Here is a breakdown of what this press release gets right and how you can apply it to your own press release strategy:
- Headline: The release’s headline runs 111 total characters long. While this is a little longer than the 60- to 70-character range we typically recommend (as Google search results usually cut headlines off around the 55-character mark) a third of those characters are taken up by the company name, which for this press release is an essential element to include at the start of the headline for brand awareness. Additionally, the headline includes the action word, “launches,” which our data shows is a top 10 action verb used in the most engaged press release headlines. The headline also makes it crystal clear as to why a reader (consumer, investor or journalist) should click the headline (to learn more about the “Lowest Prices on 100 Lifesaving Prescriptions” of course!).
- Subhead: The release makes use of the space between the headline and the body copy to add a subhead that provides additional context you want to highlight up front and compel the reader to learn more about how the company will “drastically expand access to affordable pharmaceuticals.”
- Multimedia: The supporting data: One of the fastest and easiest ways to increase engagement (by up to six times as much!), is to add multimedia elements – like images, videos or infographics – to a press release. Imagery is key to connecting a reader to a brand’s story. While this release didn’t include any imagery in the main body of the release, it did include a key multimedia element that is essential for furthering brand recognition: Their logo, at the very top.
- Readability: Another element common among high-performing press releases: Strategic formatting that serves to break up a reader’s natural habit of quickly scanning large blocks of text, thus missing important points or, even worse, growing bored and dismissing. This press release gets nearly everything right – from utilizing bullets after two short lead paragraphs, to keeping the reader’s eyes moving inward on the content.
- Executive Quote: Oftentimes, company quotes either run way too long or provide vague messaging that do not add anything to the story. Mr. Oshmyansky’s quote in this release is neither of those things. In fact, it is a benchmark for what press releases should strive to achieve: It’s concise, informative and broken up in a way that enables the media to pick and choose what they want to share in their coverage (without losing context). A clever bonus: The quote relays a call-to-action, compelling the audience to engage with the company on more channels. (Was the tactic successful? The resulting pickup on outlets like People.com, TheStreet.com and Yahoo! speaks for itself.)
- Availability: More and more over the past 10 years, media contact information not shared publicly, and often only include someone’s email. In today’s ‘work from anywhere’ environment – where it is difficult to connect with someone at times – not including multiple ways to get in touch and readily available to the public is a missed opportunity. This press release did not waste that opportunity (and to its benefit, too).