What is an advertorial?
What differentiates a press release and published editorial, from an advertorial? Nowadays, most journals have an online presence so it’s also worth considering SEO value in both. I will give you some guidelines here to help you to see the difference:
- An editorial appearing in a newspaper or magazine has been written by an in-house or commissioned journalist and will appear as newsworthy content. It will have some form of strong human interest or emotional appeal. This type of submission will not directly promote a company, and contact or website details are only printed at the editor’s discretion. There is no guarantee that a piece of written copy will be published after submission. Whilst the receiving journalist may be fairly positive and like the press release, he or she is unlikely to make any promises. Once published there is no fee either to or from yourself. This is classic style PR where, in return for a good story, you can get some valuable exposure, often worth hundreds of pounds in column inches, at no cost. A good web content writer should be able to explain this.
- An advertorial is completely different, although a trained copywriter for websites should be able to incorporate a few PR techniques into your advertorial. This type of copy is written with your promotion woven into an editorial type story; as you are paying for your slot, and therefore guaranteed publication, you have more licence to mention your company and make it slightly more ‘salesy’. However, be aware that each publication has an in-house tone which fits in with all their other content. It makes sense to get your copy written by an outside professional copywriter for the web who knows the techniques to create a winning style. You will also avoid damaging your brand. You will be able to include your contact details at the end of your piece.
Interwoven SEO value
- Advertorials are therefore a cross between normal free coverage editorial content and paid for advertising within a defined space. With copy that is written well by a freelance SEO copywriter, your advertorial will read like an objective piece written by a journalist. If you attempt to write an advertorial yourself, create an eye-catching headline and keep your copy concise with facts, information and advice interwoven into your storyline. I would also advise including SEO keywords as you will almost certainly want to use your published piece for online promotion. Most newspapers and journals also now have an online version in which your piece may appear at no extra cost.
For more advice on writing press releases or advertorials please feel free to contact SEJ: m.07985 249 964