PR: What Not to Do: New Technology Is No Longer News

iPhone comic

I don’t have a specific press release to show you for this topic, because I’ve gotten too many of them that say basically the same thing: “Hey, my comic/graphic novel that didn’t sell before/you’ve never heard of is going to be on the iPhone!”

How nice for you. I don’t have an iPhone, so I don’t really care. I know lots of people do, though, and that’s why there are now something like 100,000 apps out there for that platform. If you couldn’t compete in the direct market, what makes you think you’re going to stand out in the larger field? Just for the novelty? Are you giving your comic away for free, then? If so, what’s your business model?

iPhone comic

There is nothing wrong with a free taste. But you need to have something to convert those tasters to buying, and if you’ve only done the one “graphic novel” several years ago, what are you selling? Conversely, if you’re going to charge for your unknown comic, how are you getting the word out? Oh, through trying to get sites like mine to run your press release. Sorry. I know that it’s the hot new lifeboat everyone’s seizing on, but putting an illustrated work on the iPhone just doesn’t strike me as newsworthy. (Maybe if I had one I’d feel differently. My phone is Android, which has a comparative lack of comics available.)

This is the modern-day version of the press release that used to say “hey! I’m distributed by Diamond (just like thousands of other comics).” It’s a basic business decision, not news. As in so many other things, it only counts if you’re first, and you’ve already missed that window.

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