Thursday, July 19, 2007

Natalie Jacobson

For anyone who's been watching television in the Boston area for the past 35 years, Natalie Jacobson's final WCVB-TV newscast last night was bittersweet. New England is losing a familiar, trusted face on its nightly newscast.

But, on the positive side, Natalie Jacobson -- as all the journalists have pointed out -- retained her grace, credibility, and charisma to the last phoneme of her final world on her last local television news broadcast. She didn't go into details about Lindsay Lohan's post-rehab plans or about Paris Hilton's post-prison earning potential. No. She talked about the news and then said a quiet, understated, heartfelt goodbye.

Natalie Jacobson's familiarity and predictability has meant more to me than I understood until it struck me that she'd no longer be there, reporting the news, and helping me to understand what was happening in my world, night after night. Natalie, I'll miss you. Have you ever thought about writing a biography? If so, I know a local book publicist who might give you some book promotion tips.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

New Book Promotion Strategies Level the Playing Field

In a recent American Chronicle article, publisher Valerie Connelly raises a good point. With so many books out there -- 80,000 more books were published in 2006 than were published in 2005 -- it's growing more and more difficult for authors to get their books noticed.

For a mainstream publisher, getting media attention for a new title can be as easy as saying, "We're behind this book. Interview the author, please."

Authors who have enjoyed relationships with major publishers know this good fortune only accrues to A-list authors. The rest of the authors whose books are published by even the most prestigious houses have to wait in the line like everyone else for the media's attention. It doesn't help you to have a huge publishing brand name stamped on your book if you're not one of that publisher's favored authors.

Authors who are working with small- to mid-sized publishers, or whose work is self-published, can't topple Rowlings from her perch while Harry Potter is everywhere -- in movie theaters and in every nook and cranny of the media -- all at the same time. Regular authors won't get the media attention that Rowlings is enjoying using traditional book promotion techniques alone. So what are they to do?

News hooks. That's this book publicist's trick of the trade. Find news hooks in what you've written. If you're in the process of writing -- and this applies to whatever you're writing, whether it's fiction or nonfiction -- build news hooks into your book.

You'll be able to promote yourself, as an expert, in connection to news stories using cutting-edge book promotion techniques and tried-and-true book promotion strategies. The twist is that, instead of setting your book up to compete against other books, you're setting yourself up as an expert who doesn't even have to compete against other experts. After all, you're the expert! That makes book promotion a snap -- as long as you find, or build in that news hook, and as long as the media believes that what you're calling news is, indeed, topical and worthy of media attention.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Book Promotion and July 4

Yes, it's a holiday week. Everyone seems to be taking some days off to celebrate July Fourth, and this might not be the most productive time to put forth book promotion efforts.

Still...there are all sorts of book promotion activities that you can engage in that do not depend on real humans being at the other end of their email accounts or telephones. Those are the book promoton activties that this book publicist will engage in this week. Those book promotion activities include, but aren't limited to: lining up book blog tours and publishing book promotion press releases online.

So...if everyone seems to be off for July Fourth, but you're still working, know that there's plenty that you could be doing to promote your book. What are you just sitting around staring at your monitor for?

technorati claim

Technorati Profile

Why should you care about search engine placement?

You've written a book, and you're launching a book promotion campaign. You want to be on "Oprah," in Family Circle, and you want the Associated Press wire to run a story on your book. Plus, you want to do twenty or so major market radio shows in your spare time. That would make for the perfect book promotion campaign.

Sure, you have a Web site, but you don't really see that as an integral part of your book promotion campaign. So why should you care about its placement in search engines?

An article, reprinted by, called Calling in pros to refine your Google image: Search engine has given rise to the online identity management industry offers a persuasive argument that, if you don't control what search engines "see," then others will control it. The Web sites and blogs of your competitors and, if you have them, your detractors will show up in the search engines, and they'll never go away unless positive news about your book and you -- the news you generate yourself -- push them out of the top of the search engines' rankings.

Spin control, these days, means making sure Web surfers see what you want them to see. It means getting visibility for your Web site, and making sure that your visibility stays optimized for the Web. You may not be able to get others to delete their mean-spirited contributions to the Internet, but you can make sure that you balance their views with a positive portrayal of who you are, how you treat others, and what you have to offer.

By all means, focus on your book promotion campaign. Just make sure that part of your book promotion campaign is focusing on your Web site -- creating it, maintaining it, promoting it, and optimizing it for search engine placement.