How to Write a Press Release & Create a Press Kit for your ComicBook, Kickstarter or other Event
You need a Press Release if you’re going to get blogs and other news-outlets to even glance at your Indie Comic project. But why? Why can’t they just “find me”?
Because there are literally thousands of talented and passionate indie Comic creators out there trying to get articles posted about their Comic.
If you want to have a chance of getting written about on any news outlet you need to impress, be well prepared, don’t waste their time, and show them you should be taken seriously.
Here is the great news. You can do this! It’s actually pretty simple. Do you know what’s hard? Making COMICS! Creating a press kit is a cake walk. Let’s do it.
What is a Press Release?
Press releases are a one or two-page document that shares breaking news with the public. In a nutshell, you write up a Press Release every time you have news to share! Launching a Kickstarter? A new issue of your Comic is about to drop? Attending a Comic-Con? Say something horrifying you need publicly apologize for? Press release time!
“Newsworthy” is subjective, but if you don’t write & distribute a Press Release about your newsworthy event, you have a very low chance of being discovered and written about.
What’s in a Press Release?
Here’s what you should include in your press release
- Headline: Be sure to make it clear why your Comic event is interesting and important.
- Contact: How can they reach you.
- City, State or Province, Location: Where are you, and where is your news happening?
- Body: Super important stuff first.
- Boiler Plate: “A boilerplate is usually found at the end of a press release, and briefly describes the company or organization related above. The short paragraph consisting of just a few sentences concisely explains the company or organization.” – PRowl Public Relations
I’ll outline this stuff below. Sit tight.
What’s the difference between a press kit and press release?
- A press release is a one or two-page document that shares breaking news with the public. It is part of a Press Kit.
- A press kit is a collection of images, videos and other media assets a publication might need when posting your article.
A press kit may include
- Your Press release. Create as a PDF or Google Doc that can be easily copied from.
- Images of the creators involved. Make sure you have formatted your images correctly for the type of publication your reaching out to. Printed publications will want high res images suitable for print, while online blogs will want web-ready images, low resolutions for fast page loading.
- Print – JPG or TIFF | 300DPI | 2000px min
- Web – JPG | RGB | 96 DPI | 1000px min
- The best images of your Comic or event. Choose carefully. Select visually appealing images that help tell your story. (The same specs above apply)
- Videos if applicable.
- A review copy of your Comic. A simple low res digital version of your comic. Feel free to watermark the pages if you’re uncomfortable sending your book around for free.
- Any logos or icons associated with your comic. These should be
ashigh resolution as you can get regardless of Web or print. An EPS or PDF vector file is ideal. If you have no idea what I’m talking about. https://vectormagic.com/
- Awards/recognition. If you have any.
- Social media links.
Pack your press kit into a zip folder for sending over the Email, or keep it in the cloud with Google Docs or Dropbox and provide the editor with a link when sending out your Press Release.
How do I write a Press Release?
Here is a simple little outline to get you started.
-For Immediate Release-
Name of Contact:
[CITY], [STATE or PROVINCE]
Introductory (Lede) Paragraph
Let’s Break it Down
1. Write like Barbara Walters talks
Not really, but kind of. If you’re trying to get the attention of a journalist, then try to write like a journalist. (ie: not like me) The dirty little secret of Press Releases is that they often get copied and pasted directly into the publication’s media. So they want to do a little work as possible up front to get those sweet-sweet clicks and reads. (Not all publications do this, so don’t start yellin’) It would then follow that the more you can make your Press Release sound like a part of their blog or publication, the more likely it will see the light of day.
2. Make it easy
Include links, compressed images, credits, and citations if needed. Don’t make the editor go searching for any important facts, or information that you could easily provide.
3. Make sure your news fits with their audience
If you want to publish your story on a website about Motorcycles, unless your Comic is about motorcycles, don’t send them your Press kit. This seems like common sense.
4. Write an awesome headline
Check out this awesome headline helper tool CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer.
5. Find your Secret Sauce
What makes for an interesting or impactful story? Why do you like to read certain articles and skip others? Ask yourself… “Why would someone read about my Comic or event?” Then find that special angle that sets you apart.
- Is your Comic or event impacting the local community?
- Is your Comic special in some interesting way?
- Is your press release giving another side to a conflict?
- Will your Kickstarter have some different or noteworthy rewards?
- Does your Press Release evoke an emotional response?
6. Lead with your Lede
The lede is the first paragraph that appears.
- Your secret sauce. Hook your audience.
- A few of the 5 w’s (as many as are relevant).
- A reason for the reader to give a hoot.
7. Write 2 – 5 paragraphs
These paragraphs are the meat of your story. Make sure to include the most important details. When is the event happening? What will happen? Who is going to be part of it?
8. Include quotes
When I say quotes, I’m not talking about famous quotes. I mean, quotes about your Comic from people who matter. Like this!
Joey Sheehan of Anomaly23 had this to say about lettering the Comic,
“I spent 30 hours just lettering the first page. By the time I had finished, I lost all perspective, but it came out great in the end”.
“This is the greatest Comic to ever be created in a basement” – Super Famous Artist
9. Contact information
The people reading your press release need to know who to contact for more information. Include the following information:
- Your name.
- Email address.
- Phone number or skype name.
10. Your Boiler Plate
Time to include your boiler plate. Here is an example from Cison.com
Live Nation Entertainment (NYSE: LYV) is the world’s leading live entertainment company comprised of global market leaders: Ticketmaster, Live Nation Concerts, and Live Nation Media & Sponsorship. For additional information, visit www.livenationentertainment.com.
11. Get rid of the filler
Press releases should always be short and to the point. If the editor would you
Spellling errers are unexceptible. Come on, get a proofreader, or at least Grammarly.com.
So it is done. Let’s get it out there!
- Send your Press kit directly to a few chosen editors. Editors like having exclusives. Consider offering it to one publication alone, and make sure they know you’re not shopping it around.
- Use a wire service. These are generally paid services, but they do increase your chances of being published!
Where Should You Send Your Press Release?
- CXCBUZZ of course — firstname.lastname@example.org
- Comic book blogs
- Local newspapers, blogs & news shows (everyone loves a local hero!)
- General news sites that have art, literary, or pop-culture sections.