Every author knows that if you don’t write good press releases for your book then you are missing out. What everyone else seems super unclear on is what you need to do to get other human beings reading the press release.
There are literally hundreds of press release distributions sites. If you make even the most basic of web searches for them, you will find more press release services than you could ever use. And that’s just the free ones.
When I proposed that we create a news feed for Author Buzz and use relevant industry press releases to lay a foundation for our reporting, it seemed like a good idea. After all, if authors are writing press releases and all these “distribution services” exist, getting hold of the press releases so we have news leads should be easy.
PR sites don’t actually distribute press releases
That is the only conclusion I can come to. PR (Press Release) sites don’t seem to put any effort into actual distribution the press releases.
I found a lot of sites that charge an arm and two legs to take your press release and do some sort of voodoo to it but very few that actually made any press releases available. Those that did, had feeds where the most recent press releases were three years old.
It is very hard to not conclude that press release distribution is self-serving spam.
Why no one tells you what to do with press releases
I have found a lot of solid advice about how to write a great author press releases. There are templates. there are guides. There are whole courses you can take to learn about how to write them. As authors, writing should be easy.
What few of the guides, tutorials, and articles say is what to do with a finished press release. Sure, you could farm it out to some of the free “distribution” sites. You could even pay for that service.
But who will actually read the press release?
Will anyone see it?
No one tells you that because I think that no one knows. I rather fancy that we all hope that somehow by some magic press releases get into the hands of journalists. Perhaps all that writing of press releases is just busy work to stop you doing something more useful?
I think press release distribution sites are a scam
While I don’t know what the answer is, I think that sites that claim to distribute your release for you are a scam. As someone who has spent several hours trying to be one of the people that receives some press releases, I have come to conclude that most of the industry is a sham.
If there are legitimate press release services that really do get the information in front of people, I could not find them.
If you know where the book and publishing industry hides it’s legitimate press releases please let me know.