Common PR Mistakes: Not Engaging Your Audience Correctly

Beneath the Cover, publishing, marketing, writing a book, platform, gravity wellOne common book-promotion public relations mistake is to think in terms of short-term gratification rather than long-term goal. Another one is overspending. And a worse one, perhaps, is failing to give someone what that person needs – so they end up ignoring you or worse, getting annoyed that you don’t address their concerns over yours.

We’ll look at these two here.

Overreaching Your Budget

Don’t think that you have to reach everybody. If you have a broad audience for your book – an ocean, lake or even a bayou market – you may become overwhelmed by the number of people you have to reach, with their various socioeconomic characteristics and their geographic spread. The temptation is to run after all of these people and spread your message too thin.

The matter isn’t whether you reach everyone in your target market but that your target market hears your message with sufficient frequency for it to sink in and be remembered. Better that you focus on the people and areas you know you can reach effectively, making sure they hear your message frequently. You should reach 10% of your target market and convince 100% of that 10% to buy your book.

Failing to Give People What They Want

The problem in launching an extensive public relations campaign with specific goals in mind is that you may try too hard to push people to purchase your book without considering how they will benefit from what they find in your book. You want to lead people in a way that your message will satisfy their particular interests and curiosity by purchasing your book. Keep in mind that people are not interested in what you want them to do. They you to help them do what they want to do.

Your fans may be interested in a press release/email about your next book. But the majority of people in your target market are not concerned with a new book being released, let alone yours, if it’s just a book and not something that addresses their felt needs.

Instead of making yourself the story, make the story about what interests your target market. People will become interested in you once they recognize you as an authority in a subject that interest them, and as someone who will help them solve their problems or satisfy needs.

In our next post, we’ll look at another common public relations mistake: making unsubstantiated claims.

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