Author Portal to PR Power and POP!
This week, PR specialist Jules Marie joins me on the AuthorU – Your Guide to Book Publishing podcast. Oodles of tips and strategies for any other at any stage of publishing to become visible to the media; groups and associations who have publications that feature a variety of topics for their members; and of course, readers in general who devour specific genres.
You can listen to the “PR and Press Release POP and Power” podcast beginning September 10 HERE.
Jules passionately believes, “A Press Release is an Ideal Way to Get Publicity.” I do too.
One of the topics that authors routinely ask her is, “When and where do I distribute my press release?” An excellent question. With Jules permission, I’m featuring a blog that she created that identifies 22 resources. Some are free—some have a cost to them.
In Jules words …
If you don’t share your news with the media, they won’t know that you just returned from a trip to the Moon, invented a floating tent or created a unique work of art! Editors rely on press releases for current news to share with their viewers.
Your goal is to write a release that intrigues editors to assign a reporter to interview you for the whole story. Let’s say you’re a non-profit business and you just received a large grant for an outdoor kid’s adventure program. Write about a press release about it and send it off. Your goal is to be contacted for an interview. Once your story is published, more people will hear about you which has the potential to grow your business. You can also send your PR to your email contact list alerting them to your news. Non-profit businesses can send their press release to radio stations which are read aloud by the announcer as a Public Service Announcement. Radio stations are required by law to provide a certain percentage of non-paid advertising to non-profit PR’s.
If you don’t have an email distribution service, consider using online press release distribution sites. Some of these sites allow you to post your press release for free; others offer various pricing levels. Choose the free sites initially and get a sense of how their programs work before you spend money on a service. Be sure to read the small print before committing.
No one site is better than another. There are no guarantees that if you post your release to one of these sites that anyone will publish it. It’s up to you to write something people will want to read and share!
Write a Compelling, Attention-Grabbing Press Release
If you have a story to tell, tell it to the media with compelling, memorable, persuasive words. Everyone loves a story unless of course, it’s a boring story with no plot, no plan, and no movement. So, jazz it up! Use your press release to talk about why your product or service is unique, one-of-a-kind, timeless, or classic–whatever it is, tell it in a way that the person reading it will want to know more.
Begin with an attention-grabbing one-line heading followed by a one-line sub-heading.
Open your first sentence with a HOOK that compels an editor to want more information. The first paragraph should be juicy! What’s the scoop? Spell it out and sell it!
Next, add two paragraphs of informational content, including one with a quote from an industry source or a satisfied customer.
Your last paragraph should be detail-oriented and include specific information about your product, service, event.
The final section is your About Me statement, also known as your ‘boilerplate’. The boilerplate paragraph is the who, what, when, where of your business and always includes contact information in the event the media wants to reach you. Don’t make your readers guess where you’re located or how to contact you.
The entire PR should fit on one page. If it doesn’t fit, edit it until it fits. Each press release should only highlight one “hook”. If it’s too long, that probably means you need to write two press releases; each with a different hook to be sent separately.
Get Ready to Discover 24 PR Sites
Do a bit of research and decide which company might work best for you. These sites are popular and reliable. For ease of reading, I eliminated ‘www’, and domain names are not case-sensitive. Each site is live—click and explore.
Jules Marie loves hearing authors’ stories and distilling it into words and images that get the attention of fans, followers, and the media. Jules is passionate about the field of social media, online marketing, and positioning her clients so they are visible. Her website is www.33Words.us
Thoughts from me—most of these sites have “guidelines”. Know what they are—be prepared to “tweak” your press release for each one. Get into the habit of doing shoutouts for what you are doing; events you are creating or participating in. The minimal press release is quarterly. Better yet, do it monthly. Thanks, Jules, for sharing your expertise.
Dr. Judith Briles is a book publishing expert and author of 37 multi-award books. She’s guided over 1,000 authors in creating their books, earned in excess of $3,000,000 in speaking fees based on her books, and gathered over $2,000,000 in onsite book sales at her speaking gigs. Her book, How to Create a $1,000,000 Speech flips a difficult topic into a simple and easily comprehensible plan. If you want to get into speaking, this is the guide that will be the game-changer to success. And, if you want to know more about Judith’s life, her book of “hope” is When God Says NO-Revealing the YES When Adversity and Loss Are Present. You can get it HERE.
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