Friday, February 02, 2007

Confessions of a book publicist.

When you're conducting a book promotion campaign, be professional at all times. I forgot that today with an editor, and I regret it.

The editor emailed me to let me know he'd be using one of my clients' bylined articles in his publication and to request a copy of the book cover. That was good news for my client. Every published article by my clients leads back to my clients' book websites and, potentially, brings them more readers.

What was my complaint? Unfortunately, he addressed the email to "Dear sir," and I got huffy. So I hit the reply button, and I attached the book cover .jpg to an email in which I brusquely pointed out that I wasn't a "sir," and never had been a "sir," and never expected to be a "sir," and that I prefer to be addressed as "Stacey."

There's no excuse for that. Book promotion comes first, and the fact that it was a Friday afternoon and that I'd had a long week shouldn't matter. You know the old expression, "the customer is always right?" Well, a book publicity specialist's mantra should be "the media is always right." Period.

I was wrong, and I'm confessing only so that you handle your interactions with the media -- whether they address you as "he," "she," or "it," with professionalism and a smile at all times. Even if it is the beginning of a weekend.

(My interaction with the editor was salvaged by an apology from me, by the way. He took it with good humor, and I think we'll be friends from now on. And this serves as a reminder, I hope, to be nice to everyone -- but especially to members of the media when you're in the middle of a book promotion campaign.)