Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Power of Words

For one of my businesses we create a lot of Press Releases, every Monday at 11.11 am the press release goes out.

It is prepared the week before and from the leads that we have been able to track, we believe that out of all of our marketing PR gives us our best return on investment.....but again I digress.....three weeks ago I prepared a press release, detailing a very good news story about an emerging economy in which we do business.

I then had the bright idea to title the press release "Recession, What Recession?".

Seemed like a great idea.....I knew the good news that was contained within.

We released the press release on line and had the worst opening rate of any press release we have ever done. We sent it to our journalist listing and the same result.

Clearly the title was wrong, are people so inundated with Recessionary press releases that they refuse to open any more, did they feel that the good news story that might be implied within would just be rubbing their noses in it as they struggled in difficult times.

I'll never really know the answer but the one thing it did bring home to me is the importance of an excellent title (or subject line in an e mail).

As the press release only contains two words, "what" and "recession", one of them is wrong or the combination of them is wrong. I have used the word "what" before without negative I won't use the word "recession" again.

I hate the word anyway so no problem in that regard!

Of course the proof of the pudding is in the eating and we will re-release the press release in its orignal form with a different title in about a month and see how it performs.

Ps. Our best performing Press Release since the start of the year contained the words "Good News about.....", draw your own conclusions!

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