Saturday, September 19, 2015
Authors Should Learn From Republican Presidential Candidates
Writers are not natural entertainers, debaters, or news subjects, but they have to grow into a persona that’s assertive and comfortable with the news media if they hope to advance their writing career and book sales. So who can they learn from? How about the leading candidates for president of the United States? If you watched the marathon Republican debate on CNN this past week, you may have noticed a dozen or more strategies employed to get people’s attention. Here are some of the ways they – and you – can get voters/consumers to embrace your message:
1. Use humor. Almost all of the candidates looked to tell a joke to lighten things, except for the stoic-faced Carly Fiorina.
2. Quote an expert, cite a statistic, or refer to something in the news to demonstrate a relevant point.
3. Shout and speak quickly. All but the soft-spoken Ben Carson found a way to amp up their speeches.
4. Be quick to attack, jab, or make a strong claim that incites others to dialogue with you.
5. Demonize someone or something. All of the candidates make Obama sound like he is the worst leader ever and conveniently use him to villainize him for anything wrong in the world.
6. Act as if you are buddy-buddy with your competition. Trump looked to high-five and arm-slap several candidates, including Bush and Carson.
7. Let people see the human, relatable side to you. Many candidates used opening statements to talk about their families.
8. Fight for you screen time. Many candidates demanded their 30 seconds to comment and respond on matters.
9. Rely on your words but remember that people listen to tone, watch body language, and monitor one’s energy level. People want to hear passion and vision.
10. Make note of your resume so people understand why they should be listening to you. Don’t brag, but provide the relevant facts about your credentials so that people can buy into your credibility.
Of course this doesn’t mean that politics and book promotion are one in the same, but they’re not so far apart. Politicians need votes, authors need book sales. Politicians need to inform, enlighten, and inspire others. So do writers. They simplify a platform of policy and ideas, writers seek to simplify a message about their book. Both need the media to reach the mases and to target certain demographics.
If you want to sell books, learn from those seeking the Oval Office. Maybe you should write a book and run for office.
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