September 18, 2015

Third-party quotes in press releases

I’m generally a skeptic about the value of press releases. However:

So my current opinion is:

That fits with my general view that press releases:

That brings me to the subject of this post: third-party press release quotes. For starters, I think the following are pretty obvious:

Generally, press release quotes are terrible. The core reason is over-ambition — press release writers take every point they want made (credible or otherwise), and stuff them into quotes. The resulting camels — i.e. horses designed by committees — come out clumsy, unnatural-sounding, and not at all persuasive. This applies both to company-personnel quotes and to quotes that are crafted by the company for third parties to lend their names to.

Third-party quotes face further problems:

That said, third-party quotes are worth having. So here are some observations and best practices.

Finally, I need to write down my own quote policies, and this post is as good a place as any.


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