The Timing of a Press Release Can Make or Break Your Product/Service

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The events of the past week made one thing abundantly clear. You can have a great, even revolutionary product, but without the proper marketing and a well-timed press release you may still be doomed to obscurity. And while timing press releases sounds straightforward and obvious, here’s an example of how it isn’t always quite straightforward or obvious.
In the midst of the media hailstorm consisting of nothing but blanket coverage of Apple’s iPhone, there was one product announcement that many people missed. The announcement was regarding T-Mobile’s HotSpot @Home plan. By paying an extra fee in addition to an existing T-Mobile plan, whenever you are close to a WiFi HotSpot, all your calls are free through VoIP.
The service can save the consumers thousands of dollars a year while still make money for the company. Sounds brilliant doesn’t it? That’s because it is; however, the announcement failed to generate the kind of buzz that it deserves. While the New York Times has more coverage and specifics about the service, reading the article reinforced for me the importance of a well-timed press release. And how the lack of buzz was simply because they were overshadowed by the iPhone coverage.
If you’re considering releasing a product or a service, it’s extremely important that you research trends in your industry (telephony in this case) and understand imminent announcements so that you can make yours in a manner that allows you to take advantage of the news cycle and get you the maximum amount of coverage.

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  • Ciaran

    Very good point Muhammed.
    This is basic, old school PR, and T-Mobile really should have known better.
    It’s the reverse of the old political trick of releasing bad news on a day, or at a time of day, when you know that other events will over-shadow it.

  • Terry Ng

    I actually caught the commercial for this last night and it’s a bit misleading. I thought at first T-Mobile was offering wifi on the go like Sprint does, but found out it was really for VoIP. bleh. tricky marketing is more like it.

  • Andrew

    I worked for T-mobile a couple of years ago and have been waiting for this to come out for quite some time now. Although I haven’t personally tested it yet, I’ve hears stories of it not being able to connect to certain way points like its supposed to.
    I think I’ll stick with the Iphone
    And that was horrible timing on T-Mobiles’re right on that.
    – Andrew

  • Gary

    I think T-Mobile knew exactly what they were doing, and they hoped to be included in stories about the iPhone where the journalist might say something like “T-mobile recently released a similar feature that allows VOIP on any capable phone.”
    Nevertheless, they probably should have announced this feature in advance so that it wouldn’t get lost in the noise and journalists would have time to understand it.