In the course of doing business, my former coworker found the need to issue press releases. Here's the first one that he issued, back in 2008. He didn't use PR Newswire or any of the big boys for his press releases; he used a much smaller company called PR.com. This allowed him to get the word out about his company's products and services.
Fast forward to 2017, and I've been working on my side project. As I wrapped up the last song for the Ontario Emperor album "Salad," I had to think about how I was going to publicize the release. Obviously I have social media capabilities that weren't really available in 2008, but I began thinking about issuing a press release also. So I thought, "Why not use the PR outlet that Edward used for his company?" After all, they do have a free tier, where if you adhere to certain restrictions, they'll host and issue your press release for free.
So very late on Friday night (actually, very early on Saturday morning), just after arranging for the Ontario Emperor album "Salad" to go live on Bandcamp, I went to the PR.com account that I had previously created and entered my press release. Now I will confess that part of my motivation was to parody some of the characteristics of typical press releases, such as the ones that I help to review in my day job. For example, take this sentence:
"It's been a while since I've released a full-length album," said the marketing flack who is pretending to speak for Ontario Emperor.
There's some more of that in my press release, along with the not-flattering history of previous Ontario Emperor releases. Basically, every website that has hosted Ontario Emperor music (mp3.com, GeoCities, last.fm) has either closed down or has shuttered critical features. I guess I'm the curse of musical websites. Sorry in advance, Bandcamp.
So it was early Saturday morning, my press release was finished, and I was just waiting on PR.com approval.
Every few minutes I'd recheck the PR.com website to see if my press release was approved, until I realized that even if PR.com has people working in India on Saturday afternoon India time, they probably don't have people reviewing press releases within five minutes - especially since I haven't paid them a single penny to issue the press release.
So I started by issuing the press release via my own devices - namely, my Empoprise-MU music blog. And because it was on my own blog, rather than PR.com, I was not only able to insert a picture of the album cover (something that would cost extra money on PR.com) and use real clickable links (something that would cost extra money on PR.com), but I was also able to embed a player to play the album tracks themselves (I don't even know if I can do this on PR.com).
So the press release was now out, but it wasn't necessarily where people were going to find it. That's when I started leveraging my own network to get the word out. Over the last twelve hours, I have announced the availability of "Salad" at the following locations:
The aforementioned Empoprise-MU blog.
The Ontario Emperor page on Facebook.
Other Facebook pages, including those for Empoprise-MU (my general music page on Facebook), Empoprise-BI (this is, after all, a business), and Empoprise-IE (since every single track on "Salad" was recorded in the Inland Empire).
My personal Facebook account.
The Empoprises Public Community on Google Plus.
My personal Google Plus account.
The Empoprises Twitter account.
My personal Instagram account.
And, last but not least, the Empoprise-BI business blog itself - via the post that you are reading right now.
And I'll probably announce it in other places over the next few days. (Except for Snapchat.)
Meanwhile, I'm still waiting on PR.com for approval. And when (if) I finally get it, I'm not sure how effective it will be.
But hey, I had fun writing the thing.
P.S. Now, because I care, here's a shameless reprint of the entire press release that I already posted on Empoprise-MU a little over twelve hours ago.
Ontario Emperor Releases First Full-Length Album in Over 17 Years
Ontario Emperor releases digital album "Salad" on Bandcamp
Empoprises announces that musical artist Ontario Emperor has released his first full-length album in over 17 years. The ten-song album, "Salad," is available electronically on the "ontarioemperor" page at Bandcamp (ontarioemperor.bandcamp.com).
Ontario Emperor's music was originally released on mp3.com in 1999 and 2000, including the full-length album "Digital Judge" that was released in November 1999. After mp3.com ceased operations, Ontario Emperor released a free track on GeoCities. After GeoCities ceased operations, Ontario Emperor released a free collection of songs on last.fm. After last.fm ceased hosting music files, it was on to Bandcamp, where the song "Bare Plate" was released last month.
"It's been a while since I've released a full-length album," said the marketing flack who is pretending to speak for Ontario Emperor. "I'm happy that 'Salad' is finally available, and those who love melodic synthetica will enjoy the songs on this album."
The marketing flack also put words in the mouth of John E. Bredehoft of Empoprises. "Empoprises has been primarily known for textual content, but we are happy to be associated with musical content also."
The ten songs can be previewed on Bandcamp. Purchase of the album, or of selected individual songs, allows unlimited streaming as well as download of the song files.