HubSpot's Press Release Grader is a free application that evaluates your press release and provides a "marketing effectiveness score". The score is based on the language and content of the release, plus advanced factors from Internet marketing experts at HubSpot such as links and search engine optimization characteristics.
Wow. This is such an awesome tool. You’re hearing about it here first, but my guess is that this will become a popular little application in PR circles.
Press Release Grader is totally free. All you do is copy and paste press release text into the tool, add a few other things like your company name and URL and it takes just seconds to produce a score. But you also get detailed suggestions for improvement.
Press Release Grader even checks for the gobbledygook words I identified in my Gobbledygook Manifesto. How cool is that?
You can watch a short video on the site to learn how it works.
I asked two people from HubSpot - Dharmesh Shah, Chief Software Architect & Founder and Mike Volpe, VP Marketing - why they created it.
"It's unclear whether press releases are effective these days. But, if you're going to be creating press releases and putting them on the web, you might as well get the most value you can out of them," says Dharmesh Shah. "Press Release Grader checks to see if you're (generally) doing the right things. It was created with the same general motivation as our popular WebsiteGrader.com tool. Help people get a quick sense for where they're deviating from best practices. Press Release Grader will not make your press releases more interesting -- but it will hopefully give you some quick tips for getting more value out of them."
"The best way to grow your business today is through inbound marketing – creating remarkable content targeted at your buyer personas, and enabling them to share that content with others," says Mike Volpe. "We have no idea if Press Release Grader will be a big hit, but under the new rules of inbound marketing, you act more like a publisher - create lots of content knowing that some smaller portion of it will be a big success."
If you write press releases, you need to check this out.
(Also note what a great viral marketing concept Press Release Grader is for HubSpot).
Disclosure: I am on HubSpot's board of advisors and I am speaking at the HubSpot Inbound Marketing Conference in September.