PR Fuel - Public Relations News & PR Tips http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel PR Fuel: PR News, Views, & Stews Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:30:13 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.7.1 Why You Should Still Try To Get Print Media Coverage http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/still-try-get-print-media-coverage/ http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/still-try-get-print-media-coverage/#comments Mon, 14 Apr 2014 10:30:12 +0000 http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/?p=9580 Because most people tend to get their news online these days, most PR people have shifted their efforts from getting coverage in traditional newspapers and magazines to getting coverage on blogs and relevant websites. And while there are certainly many advantages to targeting online publications (e.g. you can reach a wider audience, drive traffic to […]

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Because most people tend to get their news online these days, most PR people have shifted their efforts from getting coverage in traditional newspapers and magazines to getting coverage on blogs and relevant websites. And while there are certainly many advantages to targeting online publications (e.g. you can reach a wider audience, drive traffic to your website, build links, target way more publications, etc.) that doesn’t mean you should neglect print media altogether. Print isn’t dead, and great opportunities still exist for spreading your message.

 

newspapers showing extra extra messageTargeting print publications offers some important advantages:

 

  • Get more in-depth coverage—Often times, print publications tend to provide longer, more detailed articles than you find online. That’s because the computer screen (or phone screen) just isn’t designed for long-form reading. Multiple studies have shown that people read content online differently than they do in print. Online, people tend to scan content quickly. In print, they’re likelier to read it word for word. As a result, print publications can get away with doing longer, in-depth stories, and this gives you the opportunity to get more robust coverage.
  • Make a lasting impact with readers—Because people tend to read print content more thoroughly and carefully than online content, your print stories could have a more lasting impact on your audience. Also, the shelf life of an online article isn’t always that long. New content is being published online by the second, competing for the attention of your audience. A magazine or newspaper, on the other hand, can often stick around on a person’s desk or coffee table for days, months, or even years, giving your story some true lasting power.
  • Build trust—There’s something about print media that’s just inherently credible. When you read something in a newspaper or reputable magazine, you know that it was fact-checked and that it’s accurate. That’s not always the case with a blog post. Therefore, earned media coverage in print can go a long way to increasing your trustworthiness with your target audience.

 

What do you think? Is it still worth going after print media opportunities? Or should PR people just focus their efforts online? Share your thoughts by commenting below. 

This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Grab your free 160-page copy of the Big Press Release Book – Press Releases for Every Occasion and Industry here: http://www.ereleases.com/offer/bigbook.html

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Commenting on Journalists’ Stories to Build Relationships http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/commenting-journalists-stories-build-relationships/ http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/commenting-journalists-stories-build-relationships/#comments Fri, 11 Apr 2014 10:30:53 +0000 http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/?p=9574 Getting the attention of a reporter can be pretty tough. You can send an email, but chances are that the reporter is receiving countless emails day and night, so yours very well may get overlooked. You can give the reporter a call, but he (or she) is probably up against a deadline and if he […]

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Getting the attention of a reporter can be pretty tough. You can send an email, but chances are that the reporter is receiving countless emails day and night, so yours very well may get overlooked. You can give the reporter a call, but he (or she) is probably up against a deadline and if he doesn’t already know you he might not have time to chat. You can try to interact with the reporter on Twitter (something I highly recommend), but even still, it can often be tough to stand out in the Twittersphere if that’s the only way you’re reaching out. There is, however, one place where you’re almost certain to get a reporter’s attention, especially if you’re there frequently over time – the comment section on his stories.

Comment button and hand cursorIn this age of digital journalism, one of the most common ways a reporter’s success (and sometimes, income) is measured is by the amount of traffic and attention his articles generate. So, many reporters pay very close attention to the comments readers leave on their stories. They want to keep readers engaged and coming back, so they give readers the ability to comment and they interact with them, building relationships.

For a PR person, this represents an opportunity to get noticed and establish a relationship with a particular journalist. Here’s how you can do it:

 

  • Choose a reporter who covers your industry.
  • Read every story he publishes.
  • Comment on at least one of his articles or blog posts every week. The key here is to leave insightful comments that promote discussion. Don’t say things like “Great post!” or “I agree!” Those are meaningless comments that won’t get noticed. Add something to the story. Share your unique perspective. It’s even okay to disagree with the reporter if you do it in a respectful and thoughtful manner.
  • Keep doing this so you can get noticed and start building a relationship with the reporter.
  • Don’t pitch too early. This is about earning trust, and that takes time. You don’t want to come in immediately pitching yourself and asking for favors. Let the relationship build. Take your time. If the reporter sees you’re adding value to the conversations and have a unique point of view, he may reach out to you first.

 

The other great thing about this approach is that it helps you get more familiar with the reporter’s work. You can get a better feel for what topics he covers, what his audience is most interested in, and where you might be able to fit in at some point down the line.

Have you tried to connect with reporters by commenting on their articles? How did it work out for you? Leave a comment to share your thoughts and experiences!

This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Download Five (5) Free PR and Press Release eBooks ($67 Value) here: http://www.ereleases.com/offer/bundle.html

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Don’t Let Roboquotes Ruin Your Press Releases http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/dont-let-roboquotes-ruin-press-releases/ http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/dont-let-roboquotes-ruin-press-releases/#comments Thu, 10 Apr 2014 10:30:37 +0000 http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/?p=9565 When was the last time you read a quote in a press release that really made you say, “Wow, that was really interesting and insightful”? It’s been a while, hasn’t it? That’s because most executive quotes in press releases suck. They’re what I like to call roboquotes. They read like they came straight out of […]

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When was the last time you read a quote in a press release that really made you say, “Wow, that was really interesting and insightful”? It’s been a while, hasn’t it? That’s because most executive quotes in press releases suck. They’re what I like to call roboquotes. They read like they came straight out of the mouth of a robot. I can’t stand it!mic_on_the_air

The sad part is that roboquotes are a huge waste of a great opportunity. Remember, a quote is attributed to a person, not an organization. That means it’s okay for that person to have an opinion and to communicate a message in a subjective way (just avoid the hyperbole). That also means it’s okay for the person to show a little personality.

Here’s what a great executive quote should do:

 

  • Add something to the story—Too often, the executive quote is nothing more than a rephrasing of what was already said in the first paragraph of the press release. It’s a waste of space! A good quote should add something that the reader didn’t already know. It should bring some context to the story.
  • Show personality—Roboquotes make the person and the organization they’re representing seem stiff and boring. Reporters want to see good quotes they can use to add life to their story. Inject your personality. Use colorful, interesting language that showcases your sense of individuality. These are the types of quotes that will get noticed and that will help establish your brand.
  • Be subjective—No, I’m not saying you should say something like, “This is the greatest product in the history of the world!” However, it’s perfectly acceptable to be subjective in your executive quote. For example, in this Apple press release from 2011, Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior VP of Worldwide Product Marketing said, “iPhone 4S is a hit with customers around the world, and together with iOS 5 and iCloud, is the best iPhone ever.” That last part is subjective, and that’s okay, because it’s a quote.

 

A few tips to help you out when you’re crafting your executive quotes for your press releases:

 

  • Be bold and provocative.
  • Have a personality.
  • Share an anecdote to harness the power of storytelling.
  • Offer a unique viewpoint that the reader might not have thought about.

 

Take a look at your recent press releases. Are they filled with roboquotes?

 

 

This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Download your free copy of 8 Shocking Secrets Press Release Distribution Firms Don’t Want You to Know here: http://www.ereleases.com/offer/8shockingsecrets.html

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Should You Still Be Putting Keywords In Your Press Release Headlines? http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/still-putting-keywords-press-release-headlines/ http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/still-putting-keywords-press-release-headlines/#comments Wed, 09 Apr 2014 10:30:27 +0000 http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/?p=9556 We all know that SEO has evolved drastically over the past year or so. What once worked no longer works today, and if you don’t adapt, you run the risk of damaging your online presence. Simply put, the traditional SEO press release is dead. The days of stuffing your press releases with keywords and keyword-rich […]

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We all know that SEO has evolved drastically over the past year or so. What once worked no longer works today, and if you don’t adapt, you run the risk of damaging your online presence. Simply put, the traditional SEO press release is dead. The days of stuffing your press releases with keywords and keyword-rich anchor text to drive up your search rankings are long gone. If you’re still doing those things, you need to stop…now. But does that mean that we should ignore SEO altogether when writing press releases? For example, should you stop including keywords in the headlines of your press releases?

Big question markThe answer: yes and no.

Let me explain.

Google is making it harder for you to determine which exact keywords are driving traffic to your website. Now, you can’t see what people are searching in order to arrive at your website. On the surface, this is a move to make searches more secure, but it also signals an important shift in Google’s approach to ranking websites. No longer is it all about exact match keywords. These days, Google is focused on larger topics and user intent. Rather than returning results that contain the exact keywords the user entered into the search engine, Google is trying to instead return results that are more relevant to what the person is really searching for.

What does this mean for you? It means you don’t need to worry so much about finding the perfect keyword to target. You don’t need to obsess over which keyword to include in your headline.

Now that doesn’t mean you should be ignoring keywords altogether. They do still help Google classify your content accordingly. But for example, an automotive parts dealer doesn’t need to stress over whether he should target “car parts” or “auto parts” or “automotive parts” anymore. As long as he’s using phrases that are on topic, he should be fine.

When it comes to writing headlines, you don’t need to force a keyword in there if it doesn’t fit naturally. And you don’t need to stress out over which phrase to include. Just try to be clear and on topic, and Google should be able to index it properly.

 

This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Download your free copy of 7 Cheap PR Tactics for Success in Any Economy here: http://www.ereleases.com/offer/7cheaptactics.html

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Why You Shouldn’t Use Typographic Emphasis In Your Press Releases http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/shouldnt-use-typographic-emphasis-press-releases/ http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/shouldnt-use-typographic-emphasis-press-releases/#comments Tue, 08 Apr 2014 10:30:16 +0000 http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/?p=9547 Doesn’t this sentence look super important? What about this one? And this one might be the most important of all! Okay, so that paragraph looks a little ridiculous, but believe it or not, I’ve seen press releases that look fairly similar. Typographic emphasis can certainly be a powerful tool in certain situations. Used sparingly in […]

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Doesn’t this sentence look super important? What about this one? And this one might be the most important of all!

stop_signOkay, so that paragraph looks a little ridiculous, but believe it or not, I’ve seen press releases that look fairly similar. Typographic emphasis can certainly be a powerful tool in certain situations. Used sparingly in a blog post, landing page, or email, emphasis can help you draw attention to important parts of your message. It can make your text easier to scan which is especially important online where people tend to scan text rather than read it word for word.

However, typographic emphasis doesn’t have a place in press releases. Here’s why:

  • It looks spammy. A press release isn’t a sales message, so when you emphasize certain portions of text, it makes your press release look like an advertisement…like spam.
  • A good story stands on its own. A well-written press release is tight and to the point. Every word should matter and should contribute to the story. There shouldn’t be a need to use emphasis to highlight key portions of text because it all should be important.
  • When you overuse typographic emphasis, it loses its importance. One of the biggest problems with typographic emphasis is that people tend to go overboard with it. You end up with something that looks like the first paragraph of this post. And when you try to make too many things stand out, nothing stands out.

So, do you agree that typographic emphasis has no place in press releases? Share your thoughts by commenting below!

This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Download Five (5) Free PR and Press Release eBooks ($67 Value) here: http://www.ereleases.com/offer/bundle.html

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Read This Post To Discover The Secret To Becoming the Richest Person On Earth!!! http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/read-post-discover-secret-becoming-richest-person-earth/ http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/read-post-discover-secret-becoming-richest-person-earth/#comments Mon, 07 Apr 2014 10:30:01 +0000 http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/?p=9535 I lied. I’m not going to tell you how to become the richest person on earth. Sucks, doesn’t it? But what I did is no different than what I’m unfortunately seeing on a regular basis with other press releases, blog posts, emails, and so on. A great press release headline sucks the reader in. It […]

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I lied. I’m not going to tell you how to become the richest person on earth. Sucks, doesn’t it?

Pinocchio noseBut what I did is no different than what I’m unfortunately seeing on a regular basis with other press releases, blog posts, emails, and so on.

A great press release headline sucks the reader in. It grabs the attention of the reporter and makes him (or her) want to find out more about your story. And if the rest of your press release delivers on the promise of your headline, you’re golden. Of course, that’s a big if for some people. See, some of you reading this are headline liars.

That’s right, I called you a liar.

Look, we live in an age where our audiences are bombarded with more content and more distractions than ever before. We need any edge we can get to stand apart from all the noise, even if just for a moment. So, sometimes, some of us stretch the truth a little bit in our headlines with the hope that it will get the story noticed and earn some coverage. It’s just a little white lie, right?

The problem with making a promise in your headline that you don’t deliver on in your story is that it instantly kills your credibility. Fool a reporter once and you’re done forever. Anything you say going forward won’t be believed. So is it really worth trying to pull a fast one when you’re running the risk of ruining your reputation and burning bridges permanently?

The fact is that if you have to come up with a misleading headline, then your story isn’t that good to begin with. So instead of trying to put a pile of garbage in a nice, pretty package, try to come up with a story angle that’s so compelling your headline will practically write itself. That’s how you’ll get the kind of attention you really want.

This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Download a free copy of Grammar Geek’s Guide to Writing Press Releases here: http://www.ereleases.com/offer/grammar.html

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Been There, Done That. Are You Pitching Journalists a Story They’ve Just Done? http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/done-pitching-journalists-story-theyve-just-done/ http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/done-pitching-journalists-story-theyve-just-done/#comments Fri, 04 Apr 2014 10:30:40 +0000 http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/?p=9289 By now, you know that you should only pitch reporters who would actually cover the kind of story you’re pitching. That’s Media Relations 101, and you’ve heard it a million times. So, hopefully, you’re already following that advice and directing your pitches to targeted reporters who would be interested in your story. But are you […]

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By now, you know that you should only pitch reporters who would actually cover the kind of story you’re pitching. That’s Media Relations 101, and you’ve heard it a million times. So, hopefully, you’re already following that advice and directing your pitches to targeted reporters who would be interested in your story. But are you taking that advice too far and tailoring your pitches so much to a reporter’s preferences that you’re pitching him (or her) a story he’s already done?

3d Render of a Street Sign Concept of Been There Done ThatLet me give you an example of what I mean. Let’s say a reporter publishes a story on Monday about a small business that has used Twitter to increase its sales by 300%. Pretty neat story, right? Here’s what’s not a good idea — sending that same reporter a pitch the next day about how your business has used Twitter to shoot its sales through the roof. They’ve just written that story. Why would they want to do the same story again only featuring your company this time?

When you pitch journalists a story they’ve already done, you’re pitching them for a deadline that’s already passed. You’re also telling that reporter that you haven’t paid attention to his work, because if you had been, you would know he had already done that story, just without featuring you.

Yes, you need to make sure your pitch falls within the reporter’s scope of work, but it also needs to be unique. Reporters are always looking for the next interesting story. They’re always looking for something new that will interest and excite their readers. They don’t want to give their readers something they’ve already seen. They want to show them something different. So you need to show reporters something different with your pitch.

Before you send your next pitch, ask yourself — Is the reporter going to say “been there, done that” or will you catch him by surprise? 

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Becoming The Expert Reporters Want To Talk To In 3 Steps http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/becoming-expert-reporters-want-talk-3-steps/ http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/becoming-expert-reporters-want-talk-3-steps/#comments Thu, 03 Apr 2014 10:30:04 +0000 http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/?p=9280 We all want to be known as the expert. Experts are the ones who get slews of media coverage. Experts are the ones who make money. But becoming an expert isn’t easy. Even if you actually have the knowledge of an expert, getting others, particularly reporters, to see you as an expert and an influencer […]

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We all want to be known as the expert. Experts are the ones who get slews of media coverage. Experts are the ones who make money.

But becoming an expert isn’t easy. Even if you actually have the knowledge of an expert, getting others, particularly reporters, to see you as an expert and an influencer is challenging. Some business leaders invest huge sums of money and time trying to achieve expert status because it’s so vital to their success. And they still fail.

Mann mit Klemmbrett und MikrofonOne of the challenges is that the digital age has given everyone a voice. No matter what niche you’re in, I’m willing to bet there are lots of people blogging, Tweeting, Facebooking, podcasting, and creating eBooks about it. So how the hell are you supposed to stand out from everyone else and position yourself as the expert reporters turn to?

 

  1. Become the best at one particular thing—Being a jack-of-all-trades isn’t what attracts reporters. They want to talk to someone who is the most knowledgeable on a very specific subject. Focus on a targeted niche, and build everything around that. You might think that this would limit your audience, but instead, it will help you stand out and appeal to a much more targeted audience.
  2. Do your own research—You want to be the source of data related to your expertise. You should be the one making new discoveries based on your own research and surveying. This makes you the source of all valuable information in your niche, and it makes you the person reporters will want to talk to.
  3. Spread your influence from within—You’re not going to become the top influencer in your industry overnight. It takes time. Spreading your influence is a gradual, snowball-like process. You must first start small by targeting the people you already know. Start focusing on building relationships with the thought leaders and connectors that already exist in your network. Engage them in building your content. Feature their expertise in your blog posts and other content. They’ll share it with their audience, helping you gain more visibility and connecting you with more influencers in your industry.

 

What do you think is the key to becoming the expert reporters want to talk to? Let us know by leaving a comment.

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3 Things You Need to do before Engaging a Journalist on Twitter http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/3-things-need-engaging-journalist-twitter/ http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/3-things-need-engaging-journalist-twitter/#comments Wed, 02 Apr 2014 10:30:13 +0000 http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/?p=9271 As of June 2013, 59% of journalists worldwide used Twitter, with over half of all journalists citing Twitter as a source for gathering story ideas. The fact is that Twitter can be a great tool for building relationships with reporters and getting your stories out there. But before you get all excited and dive right […]

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As of June 2013, 59% of journalists worldwide used Twitter, with over half of all journalists citing Twitter as a source for gathering story ideas. The fact is that Twitter can be a great tool for building relationships with reporters and getting your stories out there. But before you get all excited and dive right in, there are a few things you need to do first. Don’t even think about engaging a journalist on Twitter until you’ve done these 3 things:

 

  1. liquid_number_threeBuild up your profile—Let’s start with the most basic step of all: creating a professional Twitter profile. The keyword here is really professional. You want to make sure your profile picture looks professional and trustworthy. You also want to make sure your bio is informative and interesting. In other words, if a journalist decides to visit your Twitter profile, it needs to make a strong first impression.
  2. Follow relevant journalists—Next step is to start following the journalists you need to be building relationships with and targeting. There are lots of good tools out there for finding journalists on Twitter, Muck Rack being one of them. Use these tools and your media list to start finding the people you need to be following. It’s important to follow them so that they’ll be able to DM you if they want to reach out to you.
  3. Listen and research—You’re still not ready to start engaging journalists. At this point, you need to sit back and observe. What are your reporters talking about? What kinds of topics get their attention? What are their likes and dislikes? Keep up with their work, too. Gather information so that you’ll know how best to reach out to the reporter when the time is right.

 

Now that you’ve done those 3 things, you’re ready to start engaging journalists on Twitter. Remember, be delicate in your approach. Don’t immediately start bombarding them with pitches. Instead, focus on having quality interactions and building relationships. That’s how you’ll get the kind of results you want.

What other tips would you add to this list? Share your thoughts by commenting below!

This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Grab three free ebooks, including the Big Press Release Book and Twitter Tactics, here: http://www.ereleases.com/offer/freebooks.html

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PR People and Journalists: Can’t We All Just Get Along? http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/pr-people-journalists-cant-just-get-along/ http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/pr-people-journalists-cant-just-get-along/#comments Tue, 01 Apr 2014 10:30:31 +0000 http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/?p=9256 There has always been a bit of tension between PR people and journalists. Each does things that annoy the other, but for the most part, we’re able to work together for the common good, which is creating great stories that people care about. Unfortunately, I’ve started to notice a disturbing trend lately that I can’t […]

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There has always been a bit of tension between PR people and journalists. Each does things that annoy the other, but for the most part, we’re able to work together for the common good, which is creating great stories that people care about. Unfortunately, I’ve started to notice a disturbing trend lately that I can’t ignore any longer. It seems like a week doesn’t pass by any longer without one side writing a story bashing the other side.  You know what? I’ve fanned the flames myself. But what I’ve seen recently seems to go beyond the petty bickering between PR people and journalists. In many cases, it comes across as pure hatred between the two groups, and that makes me sad.

person_shrugging(109).jpgThe fact of the matter is that we need each other. PR people need journalists to help spread their message. Journalists need PR people to connect them with qualified sources for their stories and to provide them with interesting story ideas. So why can’t we get along and work together to achieve a common goal?

Personally, I think a major part of the problem is that relationship building is a lost art. With the convenience of email and social media, too many PR people don’t take the time to actually meet and get to know reporters anymore. There’s no trust. No rapport. No understanding of one another. And when no relationships exist, it’s all too easy for both sides to irritate each other and to write each other off.

My hope is that we’ll start working on building relationships with one another…that we’ll open up a dialogue and learn how to work together more effectively to achieve a common goal. Let’s stop tearing each other down and start building our relationships up.

 

 

This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Download your free copy of 8 Shocking Secrets Press Release Distribution Firms Don’t Want You to Know here: http://www.ereleases.com/landing3.html

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