Press Releases: An Author’s Secret Weapon
Knowing how to write an effective press release for your book is the secret weapon in marketing. Whether you are self-publishing or working with a publishing house for your project, every author should practice writing their own press release to send out to either local or national media outlets.
Press releases can be an effective way for authors to market their book by getting the word out to the media and the public.
How to Write a Press Release for a Book
Getting the word out about your book is essential for any new author and one of the best ways to do this is through writing press releases. Writing a great press release requires an attention grabbing headline that is relevant in context and that ties into the theme of your book.
The most important principle when writing a press release for a book is to make sure that it provides relevant and newsworthy information. It’s important to create an attention-grabbing headline and include quotes pertinent to the story in order to draw readers in.
Strategy One: A recipe for writing a book press release
1. Create an attention-grabbing headline.
2. Choose relevant news content that gets right to the point and use it as an entry point to advertise yourself and/or your book.
3. Include quotes pertaining to the news story that ties into the relevance of your book/you as an author or authority on the subject matter.
4. End with contact information for either the author (you) or the publishing house you are working with. You will also want to include information about the launch of your book or how to purchase your book.
Here is how a press release should sound when covertly advertising your book: Imagine you have written a book about climate change and a local conservation club is hosting an event. You attend this event and write a quick informational about the goals of this event, provide a quote on your thoughts about the event and establish yourself as an authority on the subject. It ends with a brief plug about the author (you) being such an authority who just so happens to have a new book publishing regarding climate change.
A Second Approach to Writing a Press Release for a Book
Your book press release should to incorporate the facts influencers and press like:
- A sticky concept, character, or feature.
- The title of the book.
- The author’s “claim to fame”.
- The publisher or distributor’s name.
- Where it tends to be bought.
- A headshot image of the writer or a book cover.
What does a great press release look like?
Now, you may be asking yourself, “What does one of these so-called press releases look like?”
Here’s a great list of 20 inspiring Press Release examples from really big organizations with big PR budgets. They’re all really solid examples of what to aim for, but not a lot of examples for books, authors, or publishers.
If you have never paid much attention to the logic of press releases or are still unsure of what a press release is, the best recommendation is to read some. The bait and catch is to draw a reader in on exciting information while also advertising a service or product. It’s a slick marketing move that anyone can do given practice.
Learn more about using Press Releases to promote your book.
Some tips for authors writing a press release:
1. Proofread, proofread, proofread. Any media outlet or reporter that will lay their eyes on your press release is going to immediately notice any spelling errors, incorrect grammar, and improper formatting. It is the primary reason they will stop reading your submission and toss it in the trash.
2. Avoid clichés to the best of your ability. As writers, we are all too familiar with the cliché trap and the media is savvy to it as well. No one wants to read the same old song and dance, unless there is an unexpected twist and shout at the end.
3. When referencing current events, it is best to triple check the information you are discussing. Fact checking is second nature to any reporter and incorrect facts are the quickest way to shorten your credibility.
4. Be sure to keep in mind your audience, just as you would any other time you are writing.
You are your best resource for marketing your book, your brand, your everything and it would be almost silly of any author to not take up the opportunity to exercise a marketing technique that has the potential to be picked on multiple news outlets on the national level. Who wouldn’t want that kind of attention?
Learning how to write a press release for your book is a great way to market and advertise it. Press releases are great marketing for authors and their books. You will need an attention-grabbing headline, relevant content that ties into the story or theme of your book as well as quotes from yourself or authoritative figures on the subject matter. Avoiding common mistakes authors make when writing their press releases and following these tips, and you’re press release is sure to be picked up and garner a huge reach.
If you’re a new or aspiring author, or an established published author, Indigo River Publishing is proud to support you with online Resources for Writers to learn how to get started, get published and succeed as an author. Press releases are just one of many strategies you might use to promote your new book.
Originally written by Tanner Chau, includes Staff contributions and editing by Indigo River Editorial Staff.