Brand awareness, increasing web traffic, and lead generation are among the top reasons why startups invest in creating content.
While press releases make up 34% of the most preferred type of content that startups create, they account for 67% of the results that startups get from their content efforts.
Compared to website copy and blog posts, which account for 58% of results from content, press releases deliver more ROI.
You may not write and distribute a press release every time something happens at your startup, but when you do, make the most out of your press release.
The first step is by writing a relevant and newsworthy press release, and the second is by choosing the best day and time to send it out.
In this post, we’ll look at what the data on email marketing says, compare it with data from what journalists prefer, to identify common trends.
Assuming you’ve written your press release and you’re looking for the best day and time to send it out, then you’re in the right place.
What is the Best Day and Time to Send a Press Release?
When sending press releases, your primary distribution method is through email and media outlets.
That said, here are the different studies we’ll use to answer our question:
- Sendinblue’s User data by Industry
- Siege Media’s research on the best time to send a cold email
- Muck Rack’s State of Journalism results 2022
- Muck Rack’s insights after analyzing more than 5.2 million pitches to journalists
What is the Best Day to Send Your Press Release Emails?
If members of your target audience work at ecommerce or SaaS startups, the best day to send an email is on Tuesday or Thursday, according to findings by Sendinblue. If your target audience works in marketing services, the best day to send emails is on Wednesday.
According to Muck Rack’s state of journalism report, 94% of journalists prefer receiving pitches via email. So, if you’re reaching out to a journalist to pitch your press release for the first time, a cold email is the best way to get a hold of their attention.
Siege Media’s findings suggest that you’re better off sending out your cold email on Monday if you’re looking to get an open rate of more than 20%. If you’re following up on your pitch (more on that later), send your follow-up email on Wednesday, to increase your chances of getting a response.
Now, that’s general email data on the best day to send an email.
Let’s compare this with how journalists interact with the email pitches they receive and their preferences and identify any trends.
Journalists prefer receiving email pitches early in the week, and this tapers off as the workweek progresses. Fridays aren’t a good day to send your press release as journalists are wrapping up their work week, making it more likely to have your pitch ignored.
In a typical work week, a journalist will receive more than 20 pitches. Given 59% of journalists publish a quarter of the pitches they receive, you’re better off sending your press release on Monday or Tuesday.
Journalists work at least 4 beats, meaning that they receive more email pitches to cover stories in each of these beats, so if you’ve done your homework and your timing is relevant, send a follow-up email.
Their preference on what to publish will be determined by how relevant your pitch is, and if you have done your homework, follow up using a compelling subject line to increase the chances of your emails standing out in their inbox.
What is the Best Time to Send Your Press Release Email?
Going back to industry data from Sendinblue, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm in SaaS, Ecommerce, and marketing services are the best times to send your emails.
Siege Media’s findings don’t deviate far from this, as the report suggests that you send your cold emails from 6-9 am if you’re in EST and from 9-12 pm if you’re in PST.
On the other hand, 67% of journalists prefer receiving pitches between 5 am and 12 pm.
Regardless of the niche, general email behavior suggests that most people want to deal with emails earlier in the day (either when they wake up) or when they get to the office before starting off their workday.
For journalists, that’s not any different, and you want your press release to land in their inboxes early enough to have a shot at being covered.
Well, the data will tell you one thing, but that’s not the whole story
There are factors that will get in the way of sending out your press release on any of the days listed so the best day and time we’ve presented here should be a guide.
For example, a public holiday that falls on a Monday means you’ll have to either send out your press release on the second-best day, which is on Tuesday or Wednesday.
If your content program involves localizing your content, In some cases you’ll need to consider hiring a content writer and the different time zones of different locations where you want to deliver your press release to make sure you send it at the right time.
Current events will also influence the best day and time you’ll send your press release. One of the reasons journalists fail to publish a story they receive is because of bad timing and irrelevance.
For example, Order, (formerly Negotiatus), a spend efficiency platform, published its press release at a time when supply chains were chaotic and businesses didn’t have an efficient way of keeping track of their stock or shipping items reliably.
Their timing was appropriate due to current events, and they were more likely to get more visibility during the COVID-19 pandemic than at any other time.
On average, a journalist covers four beats, which means that in addition to your story being relevant, you also need to be aware of what’s going on in the other niches they are covering.
So instead of mass-emailing journalists and hoping for the best, narrow down your focus and send your pitch to a few journalists who are more likely to open and read your pitch.
Muck Rack’s insights on more than 5 million pitches reveal that the larger the list of journalists you email, the less likely it is for them to open your email:
The more journalists you target, the less personalized your pitch will be, making it harder to stand out. It is even likely that you will be sending emails to journalists who do not cover your industry.
Narrow your targeting by using Muck Rack to monitor what journalists write about, the topics they cover, their location, and their social media activities. You can also use the tool to identify online publishers and bloggers who cover topics related to your industry.
Put all this information into an excel sheet to make it easier for you to filter your list to know who to reach out to when your press release is ready.
Having learned about the best day and time to send your press release, you’re in a better position to decide which day works best for you, depending on how you intend to distribute your press release.
Here’s a recap of what we just covered:
Send your press release emails on Monday or on Tuesday preferably early in the morning, between 6:00 and 10:00 am or between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm.
Factors such as current events and location will affect the relevance and timing of your press release. Use the best day and time we’ve established to guide you when deciding when to send your press release.
Hazel Raoult is the Marketing Manager at PRmention, a digital PR agency for SaaS and Tech Businesses.