Interview With Anchor Publicity: What is a Press Release?
Tell me: Are you someone who loves creating, but feels awkward talking about it? Do you want to be written about in blogs to extend your social reach? Have you ever sent a press release?
Here’s my ignorance. Until I began blogging on www.nashvilleoffbeat.com, I had no idea what a press release was. Nobody really spoke about them. I never thought about them at all as a tool to expand my reach as an artist. Since beginning this crazy blogging journey, I’ve received and responded to hundreds.
I’m not knocking my blog baby, Nashville Offbeat, but I will say; we’re a lot easier to get featured on than a lot of other blogs. We’re still pretty new, and growing, so obviously our reach does not extend as far as Rolling Stone or A&R Factory. But one thing I imagine we do have in common with those publications is that we appreciate professionalism. I can guarantee that those bigger blogs and websites only cover artists who reach out to them in the most professional way possible 𑁋 with a press release, most likely sent from a PR company.
We recently learned from our partners at Anchor Publicity, a local PR company specializing in independent artists, that one of the most common questions they get from artists is “What is a press release?” To clear up some murky waters, we are asking Colleen Lippert, (owner of Anchor Publicity), some press-ing questions about the subject. We started in the most obvious way:
1. What is a press release?
"It’s along the same line as a news brief. A press release gets sent to the media (newspapers, magazines, blogs, etc.) and it answers the 5 W’s; who, what, where, when and why. In my experience, sending a press release is the best way to get people talking about your music."
2. When is it appropriate to send a press release?
"Whenever you have something newsworthy to share with the world! If you are releasing a new single or album, announcing an upcoming tour, signed to a management or record deal - these are a few examples of when sending a press release would come in handy."
3. How does hiring a PR company increase your odds of getting covered on a media outlet?
"It all comes down to connections. Publicists typically have already built relationships with bloggers, radio stations and magazine editors. It may only take one short phone call or email for a PR firm to lock down an interview, where as it may take someone outside of the PR field a lot longer. With that being said, there are no guarantees in PR."
4. What are the benefits of hiring a locally-based PR Company vs a global one to send your press releases for you?
"Local press is very important. If you can’t count on your hometown to cover you, who can you count on? While there’s nothing wrong with hiring a global PR firm, locally-based ones are generally smaller and take the time to get to know their clients. This helps to discover which media outlets are the best fit to send press releases or other pitches to.
"At Anchor Publicity, I like to meet with clients in person (if possible) before we start working on any projects. The entertainment industry can sometimes seem a bit robotic, so it’s nice to share a cup of coffee and have that sense of humanity. It helps to get a better sense of who they are as a person, as well as an artist."
And with that, my friends, we are educated. I can tell you from the standpoint of a blogger that your first connection with a media outlet is one of the most important ones. If you want to seem as professional as you possibly can, a press release is a great place to start. If you have further questions about anything PR related (not limited to press releases), Anchor Publicity is happy to talk more with you! You can reach out to them on their website, instagram, Facebook, or by emailing directly to: firstname.lastname@example.org