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Steps Toward Getting Noticed

Beneath the Cover, publishing, marketing, writing a book, platform, gravity wellRemember, when you want to find publicity for your book, that the media is looking for a story. You need to have answers to the questions of why now, why this story, what’s important about it, and why should anyone care.

First, select the few key journalists or bloggers who cover your market. Read the journals and magazines and blogs popular in your target market. Notice which journalists and bloggers are most prominent, and which ones write stories that relate directly (or closely) to your expertise and to the subject of your book. If radio and television programs – and podcasts – also target in some way your market, take note o the radio and television reporters, and the podcasters, who cover those subjects. Your goal is to work with the leading journalists in your field, throughout the country.

Don’t inundate these journalists with emails or electronic press releases. Instead, take the time to get to know them. Read their articles, watch their news segments, listen to their podcasts, and get a feel for what interests them and for what drives them Think about how you can contribute to their success, not how they can help you sell more books.

Remember the all-you-can-eat buffet we wrote about in our last blog? The bad news for the carving chef with a limited supply of roast beef is that the chef doesn’t care if you yourself are hungry. After all, most of the people clamoring for the roast beef are hungry. The good news is that you can work with that.

Rather than hoping that the chef take pity on your hunger, you can appeal instead to his interests. Perhaps you’ve researched the carving station chef and found that in his spare time he’s a scholar of Shakespeare. Rather than trying to draw attention to yourself in a sea of ravenous souls, you could announce your presence by reciting the Duke of Orsino’s opening lines in Twelfth Night: “If music be the food of love, play one; / Give me excess of it.” That’s sure to earn his notice.

That’s what you need to do to get attention: be witty, be unexpected, be present. Appeal to what the person with the power to grant you attention wants.

We’ll continue with how to get noticed by journalists in our next few posts.

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