Thursday, January 17, 2019
What The Media Wants From Authors Today
While authors and publishers seek to promote their books, every single day some 3,500 new books are published or self-published. That’s five books every two minutes. Only a fraction of those books are promoted to the news media, competition is fierce to get the attention of journalists, bloggers, podcasters, and producers. Here’s what you need to know to even have a chance of influencing media coverage for your book.
In order to garner media exposure for your book you need to fully understand what the media is looking for, how they like to be approached, what turns them off, and what they want and expect to receive from you.
1. Understand The Media
Even the biggest media outlets don’t have a lot of resources dedicated to covering books and authors. News rooms have been slashed by declining ad budgets, decreased circulation, viewership, and listenership, and changing media consumption habits of consumers. Understand that short-staffed, overworked staffs need things presented to them in a concise, neatly packaged manner. You have to do the leg work to bundle a story for them. Do not expect them to spend hours tracking sources down, reading your entire book, and meditatintg on how they can cover you. If you don’t make an obvious case for yourself, they won’t probe any further.
2. What The Media Wants
Each media outlet has several key concerns. First, how do we scoop the competition and increase readers, listeners, followers, or viewers? Second, does a story match with our advertising demographics (will your story appeal to the types of people the media outlet hopes to sell ad space to)? Third, will a story go viral or get more attention because the subject of the story (you) has a large online following?
3. Is The Story Easy/Cheap To Cover?
The media’s slashed budgets means that their smaller staffs lack time and budget to cover stories. If you can help them produce a free or low cost story, this will appeal to them.
4. Do You Offer Something New, Unique, Timely Or Unusual?
The media seeks differentiation, not just more of the same. It wants what it has not yet covered or what competing media outlets have not yet gotten ahold of.
5. They Want What Sells
The media wants something that either involves its core beats – crime, politics, business, sports, weather, entertainment -- or it wants what pushes buttons – sex, religion, weird stuff, scandals, or a violation of ethics that offend us.
6. News Before It’s News
Timing is key. Talk to the media about your book BEFORE it’s officially published – not months later when other media has covered it or it ceases to be considered news.
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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at email@example.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2019. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent. This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America.