A unique blog dedicated to covering the worlds of book publishing and the news media, revealing creative ideas, practical strategies, interesting stories, and provocative opinions. Along the way, discover savvy but entertaining insights on book marketing, public relations, branding, and advertising from a veteran of two decades in the industry of book publishing publicity and marketing.
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Thursday, July 27, 2017
Do You Dare Ignore The 6 Book PR Myths?
authors are under the wrong impression about book publicity, so please allow me
to bust the following six myths concerning book PR:
1.My publisher takes
care of book publicity.
for those with a publisher. Only a handful get PR attention from them, and even
then, it’s usually a limited effort in terms of the scope and duration for the
work. To properly seize control of promoting your brand and the book you must supplement
what a publisher does. Obviously in the
case of self-publishing, authors are completely on their own and must do all
that they can to support their work.
2.All I need are some
True, good reviews will be helpful but it
doesn’t end there. You need more than a
handful of nice book reviews to get you on the map. It’s a matter of quality – you may need
dozens of reviews from consumers and 10 or more from the news media and
professional book reviewers to get going.
Then you will need off-the-book page media exposure. In addition to reviewers and the news media, you’ll
need social media to be strong.
Interviews, guest-posts, byline articles, feature stories, and other
media placements can be just as important as reviews.
3.It’s all about
Wrong. Social media is important as part
of the portfolio of what one does to properly promote and market a book and
author brand. Social media should
support your efforts in regards to traditional media (print, TV, radio),
digital media (blogs, podcasts, online reviews, websites), speaking engagements
and webinars, and other marketing strategies.
Don’t ever put all of your eggs in one basket, especially one that has
hundreds of millions of competing voices.
4.I’ll hire someone
to help on PR once I sell some books.
It’ll be too late at that point. You may feel you’re in a Catch-22 position,
where you can’t afford publicity to help your book sell but you won’t get
publicity if you first wait for book sales without properly promoting it. A book has a certain shelf-life and the media
has its own deadlines to work under. You
have to promote your book four to five months prior to launch date and up to three months
post-publication. If you first wait
until you sell books to hire a publicist you severely limit what type of media
he or she can garner for you. Borrow,
steal, and beg so you have funds to pay a publicist during the window of time
that he or she can be useful to you.
5.All of the media
is online now.
A lot of media is online but some of the
biggest media is traditional media:
television, radio, magazines, and newspapers. Do not be fooled into thinking the only thing
out there are blogs, podcasts, Twitter, and Facebook. Authors should still kill to be on national
radio shows or featured on the Today Show
or interviewed by USA Today. Traditional media greatly influences other
media and still pushes the news cycle in a significant way. Don’t ignore non-digital media!
6.My book is better
than the competition.
Let’s say such a
bold statement is true. So what? No one knows it’s great unless you do things
to let people know about your book. Everyone needs to do PR, from first-time
authors to best-selling ones, from the self-published to the Big 5 authors,
from poetry and novels, to non-fiction and scholarly works. You can never have enough exposure for a
book. It’s comforting to believe your
book is great but you have to go out there and prove it to be so. Don’t be lazy or overconfident -- circulate and
get the word-of-mouth going. Let third
parties validate your greatness.
are reasons these myths are perpetuated -- ignorance, unawareness, money, or time. Sometimes you hear of one author
who followed one of these myths but still managed to do well. They are the exception – and they would’ve
done better if they didn’t buy into these myths. Don’t be fooled.