Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Get Media Coverage For Your Book By Not Directly Talking About It

Most authors would bend over backwards to get media attention. But just how far are you willing to go to garner media coverage, especially if it means you need to be flexible on your core message points?

Writers of books will generate media hits when they position themselves as experts on a variety of topics.  Could an author on gardening be used to talk about climate warming?  Could he be used to discuss wild fires or the increased cost of food in drought areas?  Can he talk about organic food or how gardening is a great workout for seniors?

Get the idea? Writers must go beyond their book to get media coverage. Can she connect to what’s in the news?  Can she talk about gardening in a different light than the obvious stuff she’d otherwise speak about?

Ok, so how do authors talk about things beyond what they think they are capable of – or qualified to speak on?

First, get out of the frame of mind that you aren’t the right person to discuss a certain topic or issue.  Stretch yourself.  Sure, if you are a brain surgeon maybe you’re not prepared to discuss auto repair, although one can draw an analogy that you both fix things – people and cars – and that if either of you doesn’t properly make a repair, the life of someone becomes endangered.  

You should believe you are qualified to talk about a lot of things.  Make a list and see for yourself.

Second, start with your core message and then flip it.  If you talk about how to prevent obesity, discuss the possible positives of being obese.  Make it an interesting question:  Are there any benefits to being obese?  If you talk about how to grow your wealth for retirement, do a story on how to survive even after bankruptcy.  If you talk about how to save a marriage, discuss when people should get divorced.

Third, take a serious topic and try to relate it to other genres.  Can you turn politics into humor or a sports piece into a business topic or a parenting story into one on health?

Four, can you come up with top 10 lists, pros-cons, do’s-don’ts, 5 steps to this, 7 strategies for that?

Five, think about what your subject matter relates to. For instance, if you wrote a book about how to improve your sex life, you can discuss dating, clothes, makeup, and almost anything that sex connects to.

You can do stories like these:

·         How to dress up so your boyfriend wants to undress you
·         8 romantic settings to inject energy into your love life
·         The 21-day workout that’s sure to get your wife to say yes to a night of passion
·         How to choose the right summer camp so spouses can rekindle their romance
·         When work’s stressful, unwind with your lover using these seven positions

Six, segmentize your story.  Your initial story may be:  10 ways to turn your man into your dream lover.  Then you substitute woman for man, so as to appeal to media that covers each sex.  Then you think about other demographics.  Could you contact an African-American outlet and offer 10 tips to turn your husband’s wandering eye away from the office blonde?  Or think about senior-oriented media: 10 ways to experience healthy love after 70.

We can go on and on.  These can be pitched to media that not only covers family/relationships/human interest but also to those that cover fashion, travel, health, parenting, and work place.

Seven, stretch a little further by looking at your experiences, both professionally and personally. Is there a story worth sharing or an incident worth exploiting? Can you tie your views, work or connections to anything in the news?

This is all an exercise in associations. For instance, if I say blue, you should come up with scores of associations.  Do the same with what you can talk about.

Blue – 10 sample associations
Dirty language

So write down your subject matter, experiences, and views and start to see what each one can be associated with. Don’t filter or edit –just write freely about these things. Push your mind.  Let the creative juices flow unfettered.  Push out any criticisms, concerns or fears.

Then, look at what you’ve come up with and determine which ones really sound strong and appealing.   Test them out.  Play the hot hand.  Whatever garners interest from one outlet will likely interest another.  If it runs cold, move on to a new idea.  

Think beyond your book and you’ll see opportunities open up with the media.

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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 2016.

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