In the Office

The Power of the Press Release

There are so many creative ways to promote your company – print and digital advertising, social media, guerilla marketing, tradeshows and special events, contests, sponsorships, etc. But let’s not overlook the effectiveness of a well-crafted, well-utilized press release.

Taking only a few hours to pull together, press releases can have quite an impact – helping companies share their stories.

A press release is a good way to publicize important/useful information – essentially news. It can focus on an upcoming event, new product or service, employee promotion or new hire, partnership or merger/acquisition, groundbreaking or office expansion, and even recalls and statements surrounding a crisis situation. Keeping the press release clear and concise is crucial, as is making it fact-based with a strong quote or two from a company representative or other authority.


Once complete, it’s important to utilize the press release in the best way possible. Some tips:

– Post the press release on your website to provide your key audiences with current news. Keeping fresh content on your website can improve your SEO results.
– Promote the press release through social media – using key points for tweets and posts – and driving readers back to your website to see the full document.
– Include the press release in the press kits or information packets that you distribute at events and tradeshows.
– Share the press release with customers and partners.

And, of course, consider using the press release as it was originally intended, as an information source for the media. Distributing a press release to the media is a very effective way to get news out to key audiences. Choose the right publications, TV and radio stations, as well as online magazines to send your release to – ones that serve as communication vehicles targeted at your key audiences. Don’t just send the press release to any reporter, editor or producer. Instead focus on those who would potentially be interested in the news, and to follow up with them to ensure they have all the information they need to write the story that would best promote your company.

A press release can be leveraged in so many ways – Don’t underestimate its power.

Our New Client: Premiere Communications & Consulting

We are excited to announce that we have been named Agency of Record for Premiere Communications & Consulting, a corporation that designs, builds and maintains IT infrastructures and unified communications systems.

Premiere Logo F1

As a brand that values customer service and loyalty, Premiere needed to get their story out to new client markets. We are helping them do just that through a newly redesigned website and SEO strategy. Premiere’s platform will strengthen relationships with their existing clients (which include CISCO, Metropolitan Life, and Fidelity), spread awareness of the company throughout the IT infrastructure industry and bring more traffic to their online presence.

With more than two decades in the industry, Premier has established a loyal reputation with data centers, hospitals, schools and campuses throughout the country. They are also home to a full-time team dedicated to technical service and maintenance.

Read more about our relationship with Premiere.

Tweets to be Featured in Google Search

google search marketingGoogle announced that they are partnering with Twitter to feature tweets in Google’s search results. The Search Engine Results Page will feature real-time content from Twitter that is relevant to a user’s Google search. For example, if you are looking for more information about the NBA Playoffs, the Google SERP will show you what the Twitter community is sharing in real-time. When tapping on the Tweet in Google, it will take you directly to Twitter to explore more #NBAPlayoffs content. And Tweet relevancy and recency seem to be the priority so far. In tests, tweets were seen on the SERP page from users with small followings and/or low activity on Twitter.

So what’s significant about this new feature?

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The #1 Reason Your Web Site Must Be Mobile Friendly

Search traffic is one of the main reasons you have a website, right? According to Comscore, 60% of all Google searches are done on a mobile device, so it makes sense that Google recently announced an update to their search algorithm that makes a site’s mobile-friendliness a big part of search ranking signals. Mobile-friendly websites should see a significant boost in the search rankings and non-optimized sites will get pushed down on the SERP.

For unresponsive sites, this update could mean loss of traffic, leads and ultimately, business. The ranking increases for sites with positive mobile usability metrics (low bounce rate, higher pageviews and time on page), and should decrease for sites with negative usability metrics (high bounce rate on mobile and low conversions).

Even if your website is responsive, it still must meet the Google “mobile-friendly” requirements. Here’s a site test. Go ahead, I’ll wait.

If your web site didn’t pass, here are 2 things you can do to make sure your search traffic doesn’t drop off:

  1. Work with a web developer to update your website to a responsive design. Don’t bother with a plug-in or separate mobile site.
  2. Speed up your website. 40% of users will abandon a web page if it takes more than three seconds to load, and a high bounce rate hurts your mobile friendliness.

SEO: Good writing is more important than keywords

How to write SEO contentDespite recent news to the contrary, good writing has, and always will be, important for those in the communications field. In fact, in a recent poll by PRWeek, respondents say PR majors should continue to take advanced writing courses.

A big reason to focus on writing skills – SEO. Over the past six months, we have seen Google’s Panda 4.0 make strong writing even more crucial. Keyword stuffing won’t cut it any more.

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The Week in Marketing: Super Bowl Ads, Real-Time Marketing and the SEO-Social Media Connection

1. Brands Take Advantage of #Blizzardof2015 with Real-Time Marketing

Real-time marketing is a popular trend among today’s marketers. Brands are getting smarter about leveraging sensationalized events such as the latest snowstorm or State of the Union Address as an opportunity to get their name out. The latest use of this technique came this week with #Snowmageddon2015, also known as #Blizzardof2015. The snowstorm might not have been historic as it was predicted to be, but that didn’t stop brands from seeing the opportunity at hand. Dairy Queen, DiGiorno Pizza, Honda, McDonald’s, and Netflix are just some of the notable brands that took advantage of the snowfall.

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Marketing All Things Manly and Cool

SwagDaddy logo

We are excited to be representing, a new ecommerce site dedicated to providing the best in guy gear.

First we conducted a competitive landscape analysis and developed an integrated consumer engagement strategy, involving SEO, social media, as well as blogger and media relations. Now, we are working along side SwagDaddy to implement that strategy.

SwagDaddy selected Howard/Merrell to be its agency of record and launch the new ecommerce website, help increase brand visibility and site traffic. As SwagDaddy continues to grow as a brand, it will seek further integration and involvement with its followers, a task with which we have a history of success.

We enjoy working with entrepreneurs at SwagDaddy, who allow us to help them strategize and implement the marketing behind the vision for the company. Check them out:

Developing A Killer SEO Strategy

What does SEO mean anymore? Is it still relevant? I mean, it’s 2014, after all. We’ve seen the rising tide of keyword optimization and SERP reports finally start to ebb. Did SEO go with it? Let’s think about that for a second.

Businesses still exist. Potential customers are still out there seeking out solutions for their problems. Search engines still exist too, and they probably will for quite a while. So shouldn’t companies still try to compete for real estate on Google’s front page? That question is an easy one to answer – the bigger question is “How?” More »

Google Hummingbird Update: Friend Or Foe?

Google, the not-so-secret ruler of the Internet, has completely changed its search algorithm-without anyone noticing. This week Google announced that its new algorithm, Hummingbird, has been running for a month right under our noses.  This new algorithm, named for being “precise and fast,” is the biggest change in algorithm since 2001, according to Google search chief Amit Singhal. More »

Looking for: Digital Associate Account Coordinator

Social media, digital analytics and SEO are key parts of any digital campaign. We know it and so do the companies we support. Help us develop and implement digital programs for our clients.

We are searching for a Digital Associate Account Coordinator.
Responsibilities include the development and management of clients’ social media profiles, blogs and online content, as well as assisting with the preparation, analysis and tracking of marketplace, technology and consumer demographic trends both within and across multiple industries. Ideal candidates are strong writers, who have a basic understanding of digital marketing strategies including search marketing, ecommerce, lead generation and web analytics.

A bachelor’s degree is required.

For a full job description click here.