Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Better book promotion, money can't buy.

Jane Fonda's appearance on the QVC television network, during which she could have sold copies of her new book (a memoir called Prime Time) was cancelled because QVC executives feared Jane Fonda's presence on its network would inflame some of its viewers. Fair enough.

But, from a book promotion standpoint, I'd say that Jane Fonda walked away a winner here.

I mean, how many of us watch the QVC television network? A lot of us...but, perhaps, not enough to compare with the number of people who saw the flare-up between Jane Fonda and QVC in dozens, if not hundreds, of media outlets recently.

Were it not for the many stories I read about how Jane Fonda was prevented from http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifselling Prime Time on QVC, I would never have known that Jane Fonda had published an autobiography -- and, to be honest, I wouldn't have much cared. Jane, to me, means good acting (although I haven't seen any new work she's done in years) and those exercise videos from many years ago (which, back then, didn't interest me). Now? I wouldn't mind giving Prime Time a look to see what Jane Fonda's selling. I don't know whether or not I'd actually be willing to buy the book, but I'll certainly bop by her book's web site, now that I've heard about her book.

Perhaps I'll be sold. And perhaps I won't.

But that's what book promotion is all about: making potential buyers aware that you've published a new book, and that you're an author now (or an author again), and you'd like them to think about whether your work might benefit them in some way. In other words, "My book exists. Please consider buying it. Thank you very much." If your book publicity efforts (or your book promotion accidents, such as Jane Fonda's mess with QVC) can drive traffic to your book's web site, so much the better.

So Jane Fonda is the clear winner here. QVC doesn't have to sell Jane's book. All of the book promotion Jane Fonda has received, and will continue to receive, will sell Jane's book.

And if book promotion doesn't sell very many books for Jane Fonda, then I doubt very much that cancelled appearance on the QVC television network would have, either.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Room in the Media, Once Again, for Book Promotion

Now that Casey Anthony has gone into hiding, perhaps there is room in the news -- both the traditional media and online media outlets -- for author interviews that do not bear on the subject of Casey Anthony once again. Those who are promoting books, including authors, publishers, and book publicists: stand back. Casey Anthony has left the building, and the media has moved on. Opportunities for book promotion (for books that don't touch on the theme of murdering family members, anyway) have returned!

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Book promotion tour for the right reasons?

David Chura, author of I Don't Wish Nobody to Have a Life Like Mine: Tales of Kids in Adult Lockup, has published a wonderful piece in the Huffington Post called "Book Peddlers: Why One Author Hits the Promotion Road." Chura talks about trudging from one book event to another in countless cities, hoping that he isn't left standing at the podium talking to himself.

Chura's story is familiar to me, and I especially appreciate Chura's feeling that, as long as he connects with his audience, his time is well spent. (It sure beats the unanswerable question I'm hearing too frequently these days from authors: "If I hire a book publicist and invest X number of dollars in book promotion, then how many dollars can I expect to earn in book sales?")

It's good to see that Chura is an example of an author who has embarked on a book promotion tour for the right reasons...gaining something besides, exclusively, book sales. But it's even better to see that, along with hitting the road to do book publicity events, Chura is also smart enough to engage in less taxing, perhaps more highly targeted book promotion efforts such as pitching a well-written, interesting article to the "Huffington Post" that gets out the word about the authorship of his book to far more people at once, far more painlessly, than a series of book events would!