Thursday, March 17, 2016

How Authors Navigate Around PR Jenga

When authors and book publicists promote a book they often approach it as if they were playing a game of Jenga.  You may recall this game involves players building with little rectangular wooden blocks, where eventually they run out of the wood pieces and players are forced to continue building by slowly and carefully removing existing blocks and piling them up to build a new level. The player who pulls the piece that causes the structure to collapse loses.

Authors are constantly trying to build new floors with limited resources, namely time and money, so they begin to borrow from other areas. Or they may spend less on an ad and more for a radio tour.  Once they spend more time on Twitter at the expense of time on Facebook. Authors constantly have to decide how to divide their resources amongst the many and ever-increasing options for promoting and marketing one’s brand and book.

Be careful, as you don’t want this to come tumbling down on you!

I actually promoted the creator of Jenga, Leslie Scott, several years ago.  She wrote a book and I had the pleasure of working closely with her.  Her game shows us a number of things:

·         You are always competing against someone, even when you build together.
·         Your world can collapse at any point in time.
·         With strategy, you can ascend higher.
·         By making bold moves you can accomplish a lot.
·         A steady hand is more important than fast moves.
·         You can stretch your resources.

Authors need to keep moving around their blocks – of time, funds, and brain power. When they shift to new areas, however, they can’t completely ignore existing ones. The foundation of your book PR campaign could shift, but it must remain firm.

Authors can’t afford to get in over their heads because then they get stretched thin and their efforts become diluted. It’s best to do a few things well than a lot just okay or sub-satisfactory.  Diversifying your efforts is a good idea and rotating what you do is wise – but don’t take on so much that you wake up feeling behind.

Plan out your book marketing campaign and begin to shift resources to what seems to be working well. But don’t try to build too much, too fast. One wrong move could cost you dearly.

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 He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2016

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