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Thursday, December 31, 2015

Tap Into 77 Media Tie-Ins To Promote Your Book In 2016



There are many ways to promote a book to the news media, and one effective approach is to tie the book’s subject matter or author to something in the news.  Another tool is to, look ahead and identify any holidays, honorary days, anniversaries, or special dates that you can link your message to.  What ties into your book?

Some things are seasonal – summer beach reads, spring cleaning, holiday gifts, New Year’s resolutions, June weddings, Memorial Day for military veterans and BBQ’s, etc.  So what does the 2016 calendar look like for you?

January
1 – New Year’s Day
3 – J.R.R. Tolkien Day
11 – Clean Off Your Desk Day
15 – Humanitarian Day
17 – Kid Inventors Day
18 – MLK Day
27 – Holocaust Day
29 – Fun At Work Day

February
2 – Ground Hog Day
4 – World Cancer Day
7 – 50th Super Bowl
8 – Chinese New Year
14 – Valentine’s Day
15 – President’s Day
18 – Drink Wine Day
29 – Leap Year Day

March
2 - Dr. Seuss Day/ Read Across America Day
3 - World Wildlife Day
4 - World Day of Prayer
17 – St. Patrick’s Day
21 – Poetry Day
23 – National Puppy Day
27 – Easter

April
1 – April’s Fool Day
2 – World Autism Day
4 – Passover
10 – End Child Sexual Abuse Day
14 – Dictionary Day
15 – Income Tax Day
22 – Earth Day
23 – Passover begins
28 – Take Your Kids to Work Day
29 – Arbor day

May
5 – Cinco de Mayo
8 – Mother’s Day
13 – Friday the 13th!
17 – Same Sex Marriage Day
18 – National Museum Day
20 – Endangered Species Day
30 – Memorial Day

June
5 – World Environment Day
14 – Flag Day
19 – Father’s Day
27 – PTSD Awareness Day

July
4 – Independence Day
14 – International Nude Day
16 – Ice Cream Day

August
2 – Coloring Book Day
6 – Hiroshima Day
9 – Nagasaki Day
13 – National Garage Sale Day
19 – World Humanitarian Day
28 – Go Topless Day
30 – National Grief Awareness Day

September
5 - Labor Day/ International
8 - International Literacy Day
11 - National Day of Service and Remembrance for 9/11
16 - Constitution Day
17 - Citizenship Day
24 - National Hunting and Fishing Day

October
2 - Islamic New Year/ Rosh Hashanah
5 – World Teacher’s Day
6 - American Libraries Day
10 - Columbus Day
18 - World Menopause Day
31 - Halloween

November
8 - Election Day
11 - Veteran’s Day
14 - World Diabetes Day
17 - Great American Smokeout Day
24 - Thanksgiving Day
25 - Black Friday
28 - Cyber Monday

December
4 - World Wildlife Conservation Day
7 - Pearl Harbor Day
20 - International Human Solidarity Day
28 - Endangered Species Act Day
31 - New Year’s Eve

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2015

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

John Maxwell, Best-Selling Author, Shows Life Has A Purpose


What’s the purpose of life?

Better yet, what’s the purpose of your life?

#1 New York Times bestselling author John C. Maxwell answers the first question by helping others answer the second in his new book, Intentional Living: Choosing A Life That Matters (Center Street).

Maxwell has been living his purpose as a speaker and corporate coach, with book sales totaling 35 million copies.  American Management Association ranked him #1 on its list of business leaders in 2014.  Inc. magazine identified him as the most influential leadership expert.  His company has trained over five million leaders and each year, according to his book, he speaks to Fortune 500 companies, presidents of nations, and many of the world’s top business leaders.

His new book shows readers how to make their life matter.  He says to make a positive impact on the world doesn’t mean you need to be a certain age, have a lot of money, be famous, or have a big idea.

“The good news is that none of those things is necessary for you to achieve significance or create a lasting legacy,” notes the cover flap.  “The key to choosing a life that matters is being intentional.  If you possess the desire to make a difference, place a high value on people, and are willing to team up with others, significance is within your reach.”

Writers like Maxwell are successful because they take a basic concept and seek to own it.  He embraces the simple mantra – your life matters – and shows us why and how. He doesn’t necessarily tell you anything others haven’t said in other books, but he finds a way to tap into one’s desires and needs and encourages them to live life in a way that will benefit society and the individual.

“To be Signiant, all you have to do is make a difference with others wherever you are, with whatever you have, day by day,” he writes.

He’s written the classic self-help book in this volume, but it goes beyond the self part.  If people can see the world has a purpose and that they make it purposeful, then the world would begin to function on a whole new level.  He asks us to care about others in a way that links their lives to ours.

“My greatest hope,” writes Maxwell, “is that people everywhere will become intentional in seizing opportunities to make a difference and to transform their families, businesses, neighborhoods, communities, cities and countries. I believe that when we follow the path of wanting to make a difference, by doing something that makes a difference, with people who make a difference, at a time that makes a difference, we can change the world and make it a better place.”

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2015

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Language Stats of the Day


“There are more than 7,100 individual languages spoken somewhere in the world.  But more than 40% of the world’s people speak one of the eight most common languages as their native tongue, and more than 75% speak one of the top 85 languages.  Some 3,700 languages have fewer than 10,000 native speakers, and about 700 languages have fewer than 100.

“Using classifications developed by linguists, about 2,400 languages spoken today are said to be at least threatened or unsustainably losing speakers.  In some cases, people of the childbearing generation still use the language but do not transmit it to their children.  In others, only those is the grandparents generation or older use a language, though they may have little occasion to do so."

-- Source Excerpted From The World Almanac

There are only nine languages spoken by at least 100 million people as their primary language.  They are:

Chinese 1.2 billion
Spanish 400 million
English 335 million
Hindi 260 million
Arabic 242 million
Portuguese 203 million
Bengali 189 million
Russian 166 million
Japanese 128 million

Italian ranked 21st and French 14th.

Did you know there’s something called the American Manual Alphabet, which augments the vocabulary of American Sign Language?

According to www.infoplease.com, “Along with sign language and lip reading, mainly deaf people also communicate with the manual alphabet, which uses finger positions that correspond to the letters of the alphabet to spell out words and names.”

2016 actually marks the 200th anniversary of the time French Sign Language was brought from France to the US by Thomas Gallaudet, founder of the American School for the Deaf in Hartford, CT.  He developed American Sign Language (ASL), a language of gestures and hand symbols that express words, concepts, and sentences.  Sign language for the deaf was initially systematized by Abbot Charles-Michel I’Epee, in 18th century France.

In addition to speaking, hearing, and seeing a language, there’s also Braille, a touch-based language created in 1824 by Louis Braille, who had lost his eyesight due to a childhood accident.  He developed his code for the French at age 15.

There is a decline in the use of braille amongst the blind or low-vision population.  In Britain, only 20,000 people out of two million blind and low-vision people use Braille.  In the US, as of 1999, only 10% of legally blind children used braille as their primary reading medium.  People rely on alternative tech-based means to consume content, such as audiobooks.

Other “languages” used for communication include codes like Morse Code, secret codes, computer programming codes, and humorous systems of communication such as Pig Latin or fictitious languages such as Klingon (from Star Trek).

Some languages get mixed together.  Spanglish blends English and Spanish.  Yiddish is a combination of Hebrew and German.  Ebonics is a form of African American English.  Even the same language – English – sounds different when spoken in England, Brooklyn, Atlanta, Canada or Boston.  It’s amazing any of us understand each other.

My guess is that language is used now more than ever.  We are constantly consuming content – online, in person, and through other media or means.  We are writing emails, talking face-to-face, watching TV and movies, reading books, and doing something that involves talking, listening, or reading.  I wonder how this impacts us.

With less quiet time than ever, what influence does constant chatter have on us?  Do we value words less than ever before because all we do is move them around in our heads, from what we consume to what we spew?  Or, do we appreciate words more than ever, forced to shape life’s events through our ability to talk, listen, read, watch and write words?

I never get sick of words, especially the written kind, but I hate seeing words get abused by bad writers, lousy editors, and uneducated people.  I despise how words are manipulated to feed an advertiser’s desire or a politician’s scheming.  Words – and language – in order to mean something, must be utilized in ways that help the world.

Maybe the right words just haven’t been created yet, ones that help people embrace things like peace, love, and democracy. Right now we seem to only know of words like terrorism and Jihad and war.  We need to rewrite out world.

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2015


Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Interview With Audiobooks.com President & COO Ian Small


1)      Ian, how are audiobooks doing compared to the rest of the book industry?
Relative to our digital publishing counterparts, the audiobook industry has seen the most growth as of late. In the past couple of years the annual revenue in the industry has seen growth numbers from 23% and 14% respectively.

2)      Where does Audiobooks.com fall within the audiobook industry?
We’re the most innovative audiobook retailer in the market today. We’re constantly working on new and creative methods to deliver audiobooks to our consumers. Our iOS and Android apps, that offer both streaming and downloading, allow us to put a library of over 65,000 books right into the consumers’ pocket. Our partnerships with automotive manufacturers like General Motors, Jaguar & Land Rover, and various other connected car outlets enable our listeners to enjoy their books right from their vehicle. We’re aggressively working on reducing the barrier for listeners to enjoy audiobooks. We want to make simple, instant, and affordable for everyone to enjoy the books they love.    

3)      Which genres tend to be more popular for audiobooks?
Unabridged fiction is usually the most popular genre. It’s usually a range of mystery thrillers to romance. Typically the popular titles for books are consistent across all formats – print, ebook, audiobook.

4)      How has the audiobook industry changed in the last five years?
In the past 5 years there have been a few interesting changes in the audiobook industry but I would say the growth of digital the digital format would be at the top of the list. The CD still actually makes up a sizable portion of the audiobook market but in the past 5 years the shift to digital has been vital to market growth and one of the most important evolutions in the audiobook industry.

5)      What is the new profile of the audiobook reader?
The profile has changed slightly as the market has evolved. We still tend to skew slightly more female than male but that is typical in the book industry. Audiobook listeners are still avid readers and we’re starting to see trends more towards the 25-34 age range rather than the 35 plus age groups we saw in the past and we’re attributing that to the advancements in technology and people looking for more ways to entertain themselves with their personal devices.

6)      What are you doing with Android Auto?

Our Android app supports Android Auto just as our iOS app supports CarPlay. We’re working with our existing automotive partners to offer exclusive promotions to customers who have vehicles with the respective platforms and would like to try the Audiobooks.com service on it so be sure to check if your vehicle has a promotion.   

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2015



What Does It Mean To Be An Award-Winning Author?



Whenever I talk to an author who won a book award, I can hear pride in their voice.  Often the awards vary in significance and many awards are chosen out of applicants who pay to be considered.  Some awards have far fewer competing titles than others and many awards give out not just one or two awards but sometimes dozens.  So what does it mean to be an award-winning author?

Publishing likes to throw around three terms:
·         Bestselling author
·         Critically-acclaimed work
·         Award-winning book

Many times these terms are tossed about without a qualifier.  For instance, there’s no legal definition for “best-selling author.”  One can make the claim without giving further details.  There’s a difference between being a New York Times best-selling author and someone who was on the Amazon best-seller list for an hour under a narrow category such as Best-Selling Cookbooks About Bagels.  That doesn’t mean the term is meaningless.  It just means we need details: which list, how long were you on it, and just how many copies did you sell?

Awards are the same way.  Tell me what the award was for and who issued it.

There’s a big difference between a USA Book Award or a Benjamin Franklin Book Award vs. National Book Awards, Newberry Medal or a Caldecott Medal.  The pecking order goes all the way to a Pulitzer Prize and Nobel Prize in Literature.  Each of the awards means something, but not equally.

But one still has to wonder what it means to be a winner of any award.  Isn’t it a subjective process that begins with who is picked as a judge and what methodology is chosen to evaluate the nominees?  How is one even nominated for an award?  How does any award take into consideration the many hundreds of thousands of eligible books into consideration?

I guess with awards it reaches a point that anyone of a dozen or even a thousand books – out of up to a million published annually – could interchangeably be chosen for an award. It’s somewhat easy to filter through and dismiss a lot of books – assuming you have the time to read them - but it gets much more challenging to determine why one book is better than the rest.  I know it’s hard to do when discussing restaurants, music, and movies, so books are not different.  In sports, there are winners and losers.  Pints are tallied, runs are scored, goals are totaled.  Very little may separate two teams in a given game, season, or series, but there is always a final game to determine, head-on, who is deemed the champ.  Can book awards really do that?

Can awards have a scoring system that is transparent to the public – or must the decision-making process remain behind closed doors?  What would be the fairest way to determine an award winner?

Beauty pageants have scores for different areas and competitions, from speaking to performing, to bathing suits.  But each thing is subjective.  So is judging music, movies, and dog competitions.  But some things are statistically quantifiable, such as hot-dog eating contests, highest GPA at a high school, a champion golf tournament, and NASCAR racing.  But apple pie taste contests, fashion competitions, and even gymnastics events come down to opinions rather than fully measurable facts.

I find it interesting that you really don’t see much overlap in any of the award winners.  The IPPY or Indie Excellence Award Winners did not capture a Pulitzer, nor did a Caldecott capture a Newberry.  Each award has its own qualifying rules, time of application and consideration, judges, and different standards.  Some awards are exclusive by nature, geared towards a certain format, such as awards for audio books (Audies), or genre, such as fiction (Man Booker Prize), or some other demographic such as the National Jewish Book Awards.

Once someone wins an award it seems like it’s forgotten by everyone but the winner.  I can tell you who won the World Series in 1985 but I couldn’t name the 2014 winner of a major writing award.

But awards, as flawed as they may be, are better than nothing.  At least they highlight books and honor decent writers.  It’s just that too much politics, money, and bias seem to attach to the awards, making you feel a little suspect as to whether someone else was more deserving of winning.

I’d like an award for my blog but I never even entered it into a contest or for any honors.  Really, the reward or award that I earn from this is purely self-satisfaction in knowing I helped others and that others enjoyed reading my ideas and thoughts. I share a piece of me every time I post something.  I know book writers feel the same way.

So I raise a glass to every writer who won an award, to anyone whoever applied to one, and fell short, and to those who never looked to get a medal or trophy but who write out of love – or madness.

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2015

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Sharing Your Gifts as a Reader and Writer


This beautiful post was submitted by literary agent Michael Larsen, co-director of the 13th San Francisco Writers Conference & Open Enrollment Classes: A Celebration of Craft, Commerce & Community; February 11-15, 2016 / www.sfwriters.org  sfwriterscon@aol.com    


He who obtains has little. He who scatters has much.
– Lao-Tzu, 6th Century B.C.E.


As a writer, you have gifts that started with genes and developed with discipline. You:

Know how to combine 26 letters into words that explode with meaning and pleasure

Understand that writing and sharing your work are labors of love for your craft and your readers

Can use words to inform or entertain your readers

Can provide the advice, inspiration, understanding, empowerment, and motivation your readers need

Understand how words can affect people

Can change how your readers think, feel, act, and see the world and themselves

Can reach readers worldwide with your fingertips wherever you can connect to the Web

May be able to change your community and the world

Can share your work in more ways and places than ever in the international language of culture and commerce: books, games, articles, audiobooks, films, and merchandise

Can read and write whenever, wherever, and however you wish

Can keep writing for as long as you wish

Will keep improving as a writer

Can create a lifetime community of fans

Can read books for pleasure and knowledge, and to learn how to write better

Understand that now is the best time ever for readers and writers





Giving What You Can

Here’s how to share your gifts during the holidays and the rest of the year. You can:

Write your own greetings cards by hand and use stamps to mail them

Write a letter to share your year

Write letters for those who can’t

Read books to those who can’t

Teach reading and writing

Mentor writers

Write a memoir to share your life and create a legacy

Share your knowledge with a blog, interviews, podcasts, webinars, and talks

Support groups that give books to people in need

Ask libraries, literacy groups, and charities how you can help

Join a book club

Share your passion for the value of books, reading, and writing

Encourage other writers and writer’s organizations to help

Help organize events to support your goals

Give new or used books as gifts

            The more you share your gifts, the greater your gift for sharing becomes. Give the best in you to others, and you will receive more than you give.

About Michael Larsen, Co-Director
The 13th San Francisco Writers Conference & Open Enrollment Classes
A Celebration of Craft, Commerce & Community 
February 11-15, 2016 / www.sfwriters.org / sfwriterscon@aol.com
Keynotes: Annie Barrows, Jane Friedman, Ann Packer, T. Jefferson Parker
The 8th San Francisco Writing for Change Conference / Writing to Make a Difference
September, 10th, 2016 / www.sfwritingforchange.org / sfwriterscon@aol.com   
415-673-0939 /1029 Jones Street / San Francisco, 94109

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

2016 Book Marketing & Book Publicity Toolkit


Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2015