Monday, September 23, 2019

What The Media Wants To Know About Your Book

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You may not think too often about this, but you should.  The this is time and whether you are pitching the media in the story that’s about fact vs. fate, past vs. future, perception vs. reality, imagination vs. history.

For instance, are you sharing a story with the media to:

·         Warn of the future?
·         Uncover the past?
·         Analyze the present?

Nothing is without a time period attached to it.  So think about it.  What is it that the media needs to be told by you – and why is this story relevant?

Are you looking to:

·         Debunk a myth?
·         Further prove what is known?
·         Challenge a school of thought?
·         Create a whole new area of study?
·         Fill in facts or questions them?

The media wants to know the who – what-where -when-why-how to any story but first, to evaluate the potential of a story, they need to know WHY is this important to that media outlet’s followers-readers-listeners-viewers.  The rest are just mere details.

Before you reach out to the media, filter your pitch and see if it meets certain standards.  Does it clearly and quickly say what the story is AND why it’s of news value?

After that, you merely pepper them with additional points, quotes from you or your book, statistics, and background stuff.  They won’t read any of that unless:

  • Your email’s subject line or press release headline draws their interest.
  • Your first paragraph strikes at the heart of your “why.”
  • You have a good book and strong credentials to support whatever story ideas you are dishing out.
We may be good at summarizing others and not ourselves.  Of Jerry Seinfeld, we may simply and succinctly say: “Celebrated comedian of 35 years with a hit TV show.”  That would be enough to get anyone’s attention.  For you, it’s harder, but not impossible.  You lead with your strengths.  For instance,

·         How many years have you been doing what you do?
·         Have you won any awards?
·         Do you have a relevant degree?
·         Did you have a success story?
·         Can you help a group of people with your book?
·         Did you work with anyone famous?

Once you shape who you are and what your book offers, you need to convey it in 15 seconds verbally or a one-paragraph written statement.  That’s it.  You don’t need 500 words to describe yourself or even half that to say what your book is about.

It’s an art to distill a life into a book, a book into a press release, and a press release into a tweet or an elevator speech.  But it’s an art you must practice so that you can sell yourself to the media.  Good luck.

“Those who know do not speak; those who speak do not know.”
--Chuang Tzu

“The less we know, the longer our explanation.”
--Ezra Pound

“He who tells the truth says almost nothing.”
--Antonio Porchia

“The price of inaction is far greater than the cost of making a mistake.”
--Johannes Eckhart

“We choose the morality that suits our ambitions.”
--Jack Gardner

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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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