Simple Promo Tip: Call Your Book By its Name

Simple Promo Tip: Call Your Book By its Name

by BookSavvy PR on May 9, 2013

It’s a funny thing, being both the creator of such an intimate and personal product as a book and the one who has to do most of its peddling. This contradiction — asking authors to throw what’s often deeply private smack into the public realm for commercial purposes — can have strange effects on behavior, such as making us go suddenly tongue-tied when we actually have to use that one-line description we’ve practiced ad nauseum. (Sound familiar?) And that’s just one example. At two recent events – the AWP conference in March and Grub Street’s Muse & the Marketplace conference this past weekend, I was reminded of another that’s been a bit of a pet peeve of mine, since it’s a big publicity faux pas: It can be summed up with these two simple words. “My book.” On panel after panel, I heard authors talking about this amorphous…thing…they referred to as “my book.” Each time, I cringed. “Doesn’t it have a name?” I wondered, “A title? Something to give it an identity beyond: ‘a very personal endeavor I’ve slaved over for years that’s become inseparable my very existence?’” Which leads me to this quick, ridiculously simple promo tip for every writer out there (bonus: using it is cost-free!): Always refer to your book by its title. Or by an abbreviation of the title if it’s long. Especially when

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Why Your Site Needs a News Page

by BookSavvy PR on March 14, 2013

ecently I browsed over to the website of one of my dear author friends, curious to see what sort of press she’d been doing. To my surprise, the site had a page for her bio, one for her books and another giving information about her freelance work, but absolutely nothing showing where she’d been quoted by or mentioned in the media. When I asked her about this, her answer was, “Should it?” Yikes! Because my friend had diligently hired a publicist to help build her media platform, I found it baffling that not only was there no place for her to showcase all the wonderful results of this investment, but also, that her publicist had not suggested that she create one. A website News page is the pillar of your media platform. The glue that holds it together. Whether it contains links to interviews you’ve done on the Today Show or to guest posts you’ve written for small-ish blogs (which by the way, are all referred to in the lingo as “press clips,”) it is a vital piece of information for two reasons: First, it’s a marketing piece. By showing that you’ve been actively out and about talking to the media — and that the media is interested in what you have to say — it helps compel readers to buy your book(s), talk about you, tweet about you or otherwise help spread the word. Second, and perhaps most importantly, reporters considering whether to call

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Why Your Publicist Should Think Like a Novelist

by BookSavvy PR on January 21, 2013

It probably happens each time you sit down to write: You have a plan, an idea of where you want your story to go. But as soon as the words start to flow, your idea changes slightly or another one pops into your mind. Since you’ll be obsessed with it unless you at least explore it, your plan has to change. This is a lot like the process good publicists go through when planning and leading a campaign. That’s because fundamentally, PR is a creative story-telling exercise. Think about it: a publicist’s job is to find ways to tell the media and readers about your book. The first step is crafting a brief but grabbing story about it. But this writing project is just the beginning of the creative journey involved in figuring out who among the gazillions of reporters and readers out there might want to hear this story, which particular aspects of it some might be more interested in than others, and how to re-tell the story in various ways depending on this. Most often, ways to retell and re-frame a story come to mind only after a campaign has begun, once real reporters and real people have become engaged in live conversations about your book. And with each new conversation, new ideas spring up about other people or news outlets to contact beyond the initial list built for this purpose. For yes, there really, truly are gazillions. Soon this creative process takes on a life of its own. Just like with

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