News releases help your dental practice in five major ways:
- News releases are a great way to boost your website search engine optimization (SEO). When a news release is published nationwide through a news distribution service, it will likely appear on the websites of various newspapers and television stations. Your practice website URL is included as a link in the release, so you will have what are called “backlinks” to your website on those media sites. Backlinks are very valuable for SEO because if your website is important enough to be included as a link on another website, then Google will rank your website higher for search purposes. It does not matter if your release appears on a news website in another state. It is true that if you are in Chicago you will not get patients from a local television news station’s website in Dallas, but Google is still likely to reward you for the link with a higher search engine ranking.
- The release may be picked up by your local media. It’s not a given, because competition for news release placement is strong, but a media outlet in your area could either choose to publish the release on its website or—best case scenario—contact you for an interview. While you cannot expect your release to appear on page one of your local newspaper, the goal is to have it published on many media websites, and your local media outlets are logical targets.
- A professionally done release looks impressive. The release can be printed in PDF format. You can frame it and put it on a wall, include it in patient information packets, or pass it out at health fairs. Specialists can distribute the release to referring dentists. You should also, of course, publish the electronic version on your own website.
- News releases have “legs,” which means that releases show up in Internet searches for a considerable period of time. I have written news releases for doctors and found them by doing a Google search for the doctor’s name eighteen months after distribution. The more hits for your name or your practice’s name on Google, the better. In addition, it is impressive when someone finds a news release about you on the Internet, because it makes you look important and newsworthy.
- The news release is searchable content on the Internet. If you practice in Nashville and the release is about your work with dental implants, for example, then someone may find your name because they are searching for “dental implants Nashville.” The release pops up on a media website, you are positioned as the expert, and the release has a link to your practice website.
Opportunities for news release content abound.
You may have great material for news releases if:
- You have won an award or received other recognition.
- A new doctor has joined the practice.
- You have opened or renovated a dental office.
- You have lectured at a major dental meeting.
- You have introduced a new treatment modality into your practice.
- You are the first or only doctor in your area to incorporate certain equipment or modalities into your practice.
- You have published an article in a scientific journal and you want to share the information with the public in laymen’s terms.
Writing and publishing news releases will require a degree of experience and expertise. If you have an idea for a release or questions about the process and would like some guidance, please contact me. Sending out a news release is a straightforward project that requires very little of the doctor’s time and has the potential to significantly benefit the practice.