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Pressat is a press release distribution service which uses social media, as well as more traditional channels, to spread the word.
I've been asking the team about the reasons for launching Pressat, how it will make money, and the company's future plans...
In one sentence, what is Pressat?
Pressat is a cost effective way for brands, businesses and organisations to tell their story to the media and increase online visibility across multiple social channels.
What problem does Pressat solve?
Getting people to talk about your news doesn’t have to be expensive. We want to break the barrier between small startups and the media, helping them gain media exposure without hiring a costly public relations team.
It’s something most business owners don’t do. They have tons of newsworthy material but never liaise get a chance to share it. We can do this for them, without charging the earth.
When and why did you launch it?
Pressat was launched in January 2012 through a business incubator scheme run by the University of Salford.
Before launching Pressat we were involved with and developing systems for numerous other startups and were often told about how these companies struggle to “get their name out there”.
For these startups hiring a PR firm was out of the question. This meant thirrd party distribution companies were being used to issue news.
These were cheaper than PR agencies but still extremely expensive (for a startup) as attaching even something as small as an image or video to the press release would incur additional costs. Not to mention some of these services were stuck in the ice age, making the process of creating a media rich story impossible and at best inefficient.
This is when we decided to create a better performing, more efficient service, removing unnecessary fees and overheads for features that should be standard and well within the grasp of smaller companies such as start-up’s.
Who is your target audience?
The audience we found to make the best use of Pressat are small startups, people who have created something amazing but have no experience gaining publicity and do not have the funds to pay a team of PR experts.
That said, we are finding more established companies are also making use of our service due to its cost effectiveness and modern UI.
What are your immediate goals?
At the moment we are working with companies to implement several additional services for people who aren’t media savvy to aid them in creating a newsworthy story.
We often get approached to copy edit or proofread news, so we decided to work with a copy house and integrate a very cost effective PR service from researching and copywriting through to PR deployment.
Unlike our competitors one of our goals was to weave social media into our service instead of just bolting it on.For this reason our newsrooms snd releases make greater use of social feeds and sharing.
What were the biggest challenges involved in building Pressat?
One of the biggest challenges encountered was creating a streamlined and cross platform service which was easy to use across a range of hardware. Essentially we wanted to make sure whether you are on a smartphone, tablet, desktop or some other device with a browser that you could view and publish releases without hassle
How will the company make money?
We like to keep things simple, that’s why we have one key fixed price package which includes many extras priced at £50. in addition, we offer ‘add ons’ to help you further customise your release should you wish to.
We offer free submissions to charities and non-profit organisations.
Who is in your team?
As a startup company ourselves, we currently have a cosy team but this is expanding as our demand increases.
Where would you like to be in one, three and five year’s time?
Our vision with Pressat is to become a hub of breaking news straight from the heart of startups where journalists, bloggers and ‘media hungry folk’ will come to get the latest news.
We are currently disrupting the current way of thinking in the PR distribution industry and hope that within the year we can change the expensive and exclusive nature currently associated with PR. There is no reason why smaller companies should be excluded from sharing their news.
Other than Pressat, what are your favourite websites/apps/tools?
Where do we start! We use collaborative software to help maximise workflow so Google Docs is up there. The team also love to use Dropbox with BoxCryptor for syncing roaming profiles - very cool (and definitely recommended especially after the recent Dropbox security shenanigans).