The Power of a Great Press Release

News websitesPress releases are important to get the word out about your book online and gain visibility. There are numerous benefits to a well-written press release. Most importantly is the potential for reaching new customers; millions of people get their news online, including major media outlets. Because major websites such as Yahoo and Google News pull results from press release sites like PRWeb or PR Newswire, it is possible to reach thousands of potential customers in a matter of hours.
Now the question is, should you do it yourself or hire a professional? Well that depends greatly on your skills and knowledge of press releases, in addition to the amount of funds that you may or may not have available.
It is a good investment to have a professional press release writer or publicist write your press release. A quality press release will get picked up by more outlets and have far greater distribution results. However, anyone can write a press release as long as a little work is put into it. While a traditional press release has many rules, an Internet based release does not have those same strict guidelines.
More important than anything is your headline.
To write a successful press release you must keep in mind that it is all about the headline. As with anything on the Internet, you must grab a reader’s attention immediately; there are so many other companies and websites competing that your headline needs to jump off the page.
Keep your headline to around 150 words and be sure to include keywords or phrases. Do not use so many keywords and phrases that your title does not make any sense, however. Remember that the headline you write is similar to a first impression. It must be good enough that the reader wants to learn more.
Here are some sample headlines you could use to promote your book:
Author Michael D. Dennis Announces Book Signing In West Hollywood, CA
New Young Adult eBook ‘Kitty Hawk and the Tragedy of the RMS Titanic’ Will Be Free On Amazon June 20 – 24, 2014
 Author Elise Celine Releases Inspirational Young Adult Romance Novel ‘John Dreamer’
Adventures of Retirement Living Chronicled in New Novel Time to Retire by Jon Foyt
 Author Enrico Lamet Offers Unique Perspective of World War II in Newly Released “A Gift from the Enemy”
 Quirky Young Heroine Stars in New Young Adult Adventure Book Series by Iain Reading 
Teko Bernard’s Highly Anticipated Debut Novel Now Available for Sale on
 New Contemporary Romance Novel ‘An Incurable Insanity’ Explores Traditional Indian Culture Through Universally Appealing Love Story
Children Gain Better Understanding of Cystic Fibrosis Through New Picture Book Sticky Icky Booger Bugs by Sherry Frith 
Lifestyle Businesses Are an Easy Way to Work Less and Live More, Says Author and Business Owner Rasmus Lindgren
New Sports Fiction Book Helps Kids Exercise Their Minds 
Novelist Jerry Kaczmarowski Announces The Release Of His Latest Techno Thriller ‘Sapient’
Keep it short and to the point.
You want to write just enough to peak the reader’s interest so that they want to visit your website for more. Do not give away all of the information in your press release. This will defeat the purpose of driving relevant, targeted traffic to your website.
Include pictures with your press release.
Studies have shown that press releases containing images will get better results than those that do not. Not only do people notice pictures quicker, a press release containing visuals looks better and is ranked higher by top search engines. If you are distributing a press release to promote your book, you should include both your headshot and your book cover with the press release.
Include contact and/or company information.
In the last sentence of your press release, include your publicists contact information. If you don’t have a publicist, then you should include your contact information.
Research press releases to get a better idea of the format. Publicists will tell you that the format you use for your press releases makes quite a bit of difference in the way your book and/or website is perceived.
By following a few simple rules you can write a great press release and attract the attention of many possible customers. Depending on the press release distribution website you decide to use, the rules and guidelines may vary slightly. Be sure to read each website’s rules before submitting your press release.
Here’s a list of some of our favorite press release distribution sites: