Friday, January 11, 2019

8 Ways To Get Media Coverage For Your Book

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One impression of the news media is that it covers crime, tragedy, and controversy.  Another is that it is filled with soft stories about diets, viral You Tube videos, twitter spats, celebrity gossip, and coverage of the basics:  weather, Wall Street, sports, and lottery winners.  There are some meatier news outlets that report in-depth on real issues of the day, but they are in the minority.  How will you position your book, brand, and message to the media?

Approach 1:  Give the Media What It Wants
Regardless of what you feel your core message is, can you bend to fit a message that meets the needs of a media outlet?  For instance, let’s say your book is about raising healthy-minded children as a parent, geared towards parents of young children.  Would you come up with a pitch about how someone like President Trump, if raised in accordance with your book’s prescription, would have turned out a lot different?  Now you can pitch news and political outlets – not just parenting, psychology, health, or general interest. Granted, you may not be into politics, the book may never mention Trump, and you probably have no knowledge of how he was raised (by Satan?), but now you can talk about your book in a different context – and give media that you wouldn’t have otherwise contacted a chance to discuss your book.

Approach #2:  Serve The Editorial Slant Of A Media Outlet
Know the specific media outlet that you are pitching.  If they cover the subject matter that your book is about, what type of voice do they use?  For instance, are they liberal or conservative?  Do they appeal to a certain gender, race, age, religion, or other defining trait?  How can you present your message in way that is palatable to the editorial voice of the media outlet?

Approach #3:  How Are You First, Better Or Different?
Assuming the media is open to covering your topic, why should it talk to you and not someone else?  Are you the first to do, say, or be something?  Are you truly better than your competitors?  How are you unique or different – or contrarian to popular beliefs?  What’s your unique selling proposition – in 15 seconds or less?

Approach #4:  Offer Exclusivity
You can reel in a few media outlets by saying they’d be the first to cover you or that they’re getting an inside scoop on something that they get the first crack at you, but you can offer exclusives by media type:  first radio interview, first print story, first TV interview, first podcast, etc.

Approach #5:  Sell Them On Your Connections
The media loves to get hits to their web sites and social media platforms.  You can help them get more clicks if you intimate you have a substantial platform.  They’ll be more apt to cover you if they believe you can help them.

Approach #6:  Win Over A Producer, Editor, Blogger
If you can make a personal connection with a specific person at a media outlet you may get some coverage. Let’s say your book’s about adoption and you know or learn that a reporter was adopted or has adopted, a child, you may win them over because they can relate to you.  Or, you may just hit it off personality wise.  Sell yourself and look to find ways they can identify with you.

Approach #7:  Hijack The News
Time the news cycle so that when the media covers something you find a way to tie into that topic.  It’s purely a matter of timing and circumstance.  Today, they may not be interested in a book on organic farming but tomorrow when there’s an outbreak of food pesticide poisoning they’ll want your insights.

Approach #8: Pitch To The Editorial Calendar
Many media outlets, especially magazines, have an editorial calendar – a list of upcoming issues and featured topics.  Consult these calendars and pitch the media outlets accordingly.  You also should look at a real calendar – are there holidays, anniversaries, honorary days, or special celebrations coming up that you tie into?

The news media is always looking for a good story – but there’s crazy competition to get their attention.  Try multiple approaches until you find a way to break through.


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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 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 and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America.

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