February 3rd, 2014 by Paul Krupin
Are you ready to publish? Knowing when you are done.
Each year I work with hundreds of authors and publishing companies. Very few of them ask enough strangers to give them feedback as part of their book creation process.
What I recommend people do is go slow. Start with family, friends, colleagues, employees and expand the circle till you reach strangers. Show and tell one on one. It’s possible to learn how to sell. That’s the miracle of the microcosm. If you learn what you need to say to people in your little neck of the woods, chances are you can then say the same thing anywhere and everywhere you go and you’ll be equally successful selling your products wherever you go.
But you need to learn those magic words first.You have to write to sell, and the job of writing isn’t done until the book sells. This is where most self-publishers go astray. They publish their book without verifying it was really ready for market. Many don’t even get the help of an editor!
You have to test your ideas and test your product and test your mar-com (marketing communications) on real live people. STRANGERS! You need to identify your end users and the people who will buy the book for your users. Then you need to learn what to say to get these people to take the action you want.
Write to sell and test, test, test. Do this in small doses till you get the right buy signals. Reliably. Not just once or twice, but repeatedly and reliably.
Do 25 to 50 POD versions and test it with these important people.
You’ll know by their behavior and response whether you are really ready to publish the book.
If you can’t get people to even look at it, then you’re not done.
If they look at it and put it down, then you still have work to do.
If people look at it and grab it, you might be done. It depends what happens when they then pick it up and peruse it. If they put it down, then you’re not done.
If you get good comments that say “OMG you turned me on” – capture it, and do more of it.
If you get negative feedback that says “YUCHHH!”, take it out or fix it. Get rid of it.
Improve with the CACA process. Create — Ask — Create Again — Ask Again.
Yes it can be pretty s****. You may choke on your pride and wake up after a sleepless night. You have to have the guts and fortitude to redesign and re-write it till you know you are done because it sings to people. You have to work with your prospective audience to get real feedback, and you must listen to what people say and address the issues you receive.
This may take a lot of reiterations. But one thing is for certain, there is a point that you will reach when you know that you are done. It’s a wonderful thing when you get to this point and know it.
So this is my bottom line advice: Write to sell. Don’t stop writing and re-writing till you know it sells, and sells easily and continuously.
Prove it with small test POD numbers. Use the technology that is available to all of us wisely. Then move it up through the publishing and promotion chain level by level.
In most cases, the author thinks the book should excite and grab people. But it doesn’t always happen that way.
So to me, they still have work to do. But they can’t speculate about what’s wrong, they need real data.
This is what I tell people to do – get the data. Figure out what you need to say and do to produce action that will satisfy your stated goals and objectives:
Go ask your candidate customers. Ask until you are blue in the face and get the hard difficult data and feedback you need to redesign and redo your project.
January 23rd, 2014 by Paul Krupin
Being a force multiplier is where I get my kicks
I read with a pen in my hand at all times. The real trick is to not only underline the good ideas and passages, but open up a notebook and write down the idea and develop an action, identify who else needs to be brought in, identify a completion date and deploy the action plan to turn the idea into a reality with benefits. Even if it is inspirational, fiction or non-business related, identify the good stuff and share it with someone. Sharing and caring someone else’s life’s work can bring joy to the world. Being a force multiplier is where I get my kicks.
May 14th, 2012 by Paul Krupin
Is this all there is? Selling books is a bitch!
I posted this today on the Yahoo Self Publishing group in response to a frustrated author.
” I wonder if it as simple as perhaps we are not asking people to buy our books? You can get the freebie advertising but it is like throwing chum to fish. You might get their attention but unless you hook them by the lip you are not going to catch any. …… Musicians and published authors actually go out and play their music or do book signings. Buddy Holly hated touring (and it killed him) but his record sales needed the public appearances.”
I don’t think asking people to buy your book is simple at all. I don’t think it’s as effective as tantalizing them and persuading them.
Most authors and even most publishers devote very little time and effort into the identification, targeting, messaging, acquisition and activation of buyers for their books. Yet figuring this out is crucial.
Even with the incredible technologies available online, people don’t know how to create the messages and communications that pull people in. Instead, they either do very little (as in, build it and they will come), or they push the product, find out how hard it is, and then give up because so few people buy the book.
You can do a lot with the media and technologies online if you seek to understand how people buy or get engaged with your books, products or services.
1. People discover a need, or want to solve a problem.
2. They begin a search usually online, but it can happen on social media like FB or Twitter or any number of other places (including discussion groups like this one)
3. But they really don’t look very hard. They only pay attention to the first few things they discover or the first few recommendations they get from people they have familiarity with.
4. People also tend to go and hang out where they are invited, accepted, entertained or educated.
Now for every type of book, product or service, there are thus hundreds if not thousands of places to search and become associated with.
But as most people now know, you can’t easily sell product and survive the act of asking. You must provide helpful, non-sales laden information, guidance, education or entertainment with subtle links that lead you back to your site. That’s where the real sales process then begins.
So what do you do?
1. Determine who your audience really is! Identify who your best targeted customers are and then figure out where they hang out. Your goal is to then learn how to be prominent and highly regared wherever they hang out.
2. You need to identify the type of content that will turn them on. Is it action laden excerpts? Is it drama? Is it illustrations, games, videos, or helpful tips?
3. You need to learn how to communicate so that your content works wherever you place it. The post for a blog is not automatically what you place in a tweet. The content and the trail of breadcrumbs has to fit the medium.
4. You need to participate in the communities meaningfully. You answer questions and provide feedback, offer tips, advice, stories, humor, experience and enthusiasm, so that people are inspired and get interested and so that you trigger the action to go to your site to explore your product.
5. You create content that people want to link to, want to share, and want to give to others.
This is what you try to do with media when you do publicity. Only now, EVERYONE is a publisher who is trying to make money off subscriptions and/or advertising.
If you do it reasonably well, you get dozens or articles or posts.
If you do phenomenally well, you go viral.
You don’t just write in a vacuum. You develop, test, deploy, analyze and improve.
My simple acronym for this process is this: CACA
C – Create
A – Ask
C – Create again
A – Ask again
Once you prove the message works in your backyard, only then can and should you use technology to try to repeat the success widely.
Your objective is to keep on placing things before YOUR people so they can decide to participate, play or purchase.
But just realize that this is hard to do. Think about it! When was the last time you read the newspaper, and went and grabbed your credit card.
Yet very often, a single piece of information triggers a desire that brings something to mind that does indeed get you to take action. Then and only then do you search for the contact information, the email, the phone or the order form.
Few authors realize that creating the book is only the beginning. To be successful they have to find satisfaction in connecting with people again and again till they get enough action to pay for their investment in the work they created. It’s not just mechanics and technology.
It’s not just fine art or excellence in creative writing.
There’s persistent, dedicated systematic communication outreach that has to drive people to action.
Success often lives or dies with the close monitoring of the one-to one relationship developed between the author and his or her audience.
That is where the author must determine “what did I do and say that turned you on?”
Learn this and you can use the technologies.
Fail to learn this and nothing happens.
January 31st, 2012 by Paul Krupin
How to turn a rejection from media into an acceptance and feature story media coverage
OK, you send out a news release.
You asked for a review, a feature story or an interview. You gave them options, incentives, access to data, photos, people.
They said NO! Is it all over? Is that all there is? Has the door to opportunity slammed in your face?
I don’t think so.
No rarely means No. It usually means not now. It means maybe later.
But it is up to you to figure out what do do.
And what you do is simple: You make another proposal. You offer to send another idea. You say, how about i call you back in two hours (after your deadline has passed).
Always pitch back another idea for something else. Never let the conversation stop. Take the action and get them to say yes to something that keeps the conversation going.
Media people have a job to do. Maybe your proposed idea just didn’t fit in with their needs or maybe they think it will take more time and effort than they can give. As them “Is there something I/We can do to make this more attractive? Is there more information we can send to you.”
If they still say no, ask them “How about something totally different? What about this idea instead?”
Ask them “What would you like to see us present to you?”
Find out what the media wants. Then give them what they need and make it easy for them to work with you.
That’s how you’ll get respect from media for being a valued contributor and a working professional they can trust and rely upon to help them do their job.
That’s how you’ll close more deals and get more of what you want, too.
January 14th, 2012 by Paul Krupin
Getting the media (and everyone else...) to pay attention and get interested
One of the participants in the Independent Authors Guild list on Yahoo said:
> There is one question that I think all indi authors have asked themselves. How do the big publishers do it. I understand that authors like Dan
> Brown and Rawling can sell 10 million copies on release day, but before that. I remember years ago stopping in the book isle at Wall-Mart. I
> picked up this book called “Deception Point” by Dan Brown. …… But? How did he get his first novel on that Wall-Mart shelf? No one
> had ever heard of Dan Brown before.
I hear the frustration people have in seeking to break even and make a profit writing all the time. Just want to share some experience, perspective and some ideas.
Many years ago, Dan Brown was a poor starving author and an English teacher and his wife Blythe were struggling, seeking to achieve success and sales with his fiction writing. They hired me back in the days when I operated a business called Imediafax (we used to send one page faxes to media) and I worked for them to get publicity for the book Angels & Demons before Dan made it big with The Da Vinci Code. (If you have Angels and Demons on your shelf go and look, you’ll find my name in the acknowledgements).
Then as now, an author must first do his or her best and WRITE A GOOD BOOK. (That’s a separate question. But let’s just say, OK, you’ve written a good book.)
Then they must do their best to let the right people know that they have a good book. They must reach their target audience and entertain and educate them so that they are motivated to buy the book. Many authors don’t do this very well. Yet it’s crucial if you are to be successful. So I’m going to focus on this a little.
People’s needs haven’t really changed. Time and technologies have changed.
I think there are amazing opportunities for success in writing. In the US alone you have over 330 million people all of whom read, watch and listen to newspapers, magazines, radio, TV and all sorts of Internet and electronic media and communications devices. We’re trained from birth and indoctrinated in how to use these technologies.
What’s more is we are biological organisms and have five senses and we respond to stimulation in predictable ways. We laugh at the same jokes, we cry at the same sad stories, and we get turn on by beautiful half naked people. What even more important is that we can be stimulated to buy things. The media and producers have figured out how to do this and you can too.
It’s pretty clear that you have the opportunity to do really well IF you figure out how to turn people on.
The challenge is that you need to learn how to turn YOUR people on.
And once you learn how to do that, THEN you can use all the available technologies to reach people and stimulate them to action.
BUT if you don’t figure out how to turn people on first, then no matter what technologies you use, you really won’t have the effect you seek.
So HOW do you turn people on? HOW do you turn media on? That’s the challenge.
At least in my continuing experience and a publicist, it doesn’t matter whether you write non-fiction or fiction. The media does not really care about the book. They care about what you do to their audience with what you ask them to publish (in an article or a review) or use on a show (in a feature or an interview). It has to be so good that it helps them sell more subscriptions and advertising. This is how they make their income and this is what you have to provide if you want them to use your content.
So if it’s not the book, what is it?
My Answer: It’s about the issues you can talk about! It’s about the emotional engagement and interest you can capture!
As a publicist, I see this again and again. You can see the proof of it day in and day out in the media you want to be in. The question is how do you do it?
You have maximum success turning people on by getting jazzed up and energized and spontaneously raving about the issues you write about. It’s when you and revved up and all fired up that you generate the energy and the intelligence that galvanizes people’s attention. It’s those moments when you are at your best.
That’s what you need to identify for your all promotional efforts. You will be most successful with media, when you offer them a show or an article with you doing what you do best. It need not be very long. It just has to be really good.
So if you’ve written a book and are seeking to get people to buy that book, keep on talking to people about your book and your writing. Pay close attention to what you say and do when you create maximum interest and turn people on. You can also find much of this information in the reviewer comments and testimonials that you receive from people who read your book. They’ll tell you very specifically what you wrote that turns them on.
But remember that you can’t use the description of the book or the feeling as a substitute for the real thing. When you do promotion, you must deliver the communication that actually produce the feelings that trigger the interest and action.
That is what you have to place into the communications you use. You must learn what you say and do and then capture and repeat that messages. This is not easy to do, when you realize that each medium of communications you choose to use has its own format requirements.
So focus on identifying what you say and do that turns people on. Capture it! Repeat it several times in various settings and circumstances and make sure that it produces the action that you want to happen (as in people get so interested that they buy your books).
Then you can reformat and use all the technologies you want to repeat that message. Like Dan Poynter says, write it once and sell it forever.
January 8th, 2011 by Paul Krupin
Strategies and tactics for getting beyond the book review pages
One of my clients expressed her frustration in getting her local paper to give her coverage for a children’s book. Her local paper was The New Orleans Time’s Picayune.
I offer up some of the techniques I use to help identify how to increase your chances of being successful with them and other newspapers and media who cover children’s books.
Use the 3 I Technique and the newspapers’ own search engine.
The 3 I Technique consists of 3 steps:
1. Identify a Success Story (and use this for a model for your own pitch).
2. Imitate It (line by line).
3. Innovate It (with your own information).
Now go to the target media that you want to be in.
I went to Nola.com since this is where you want to be, but you could use Google News, USAToday.com, the NY Times, or any media that you want to target.
Now search on your key words: children’s book
I used the singular (book) to capture both articles that use ‘children’s book’ and ‘children’s books’
Here’s the search:
The first set of results included several years’ worth of articles so I used the advanced search engine option to narrow the results to the past 18 months only.
Now start studying the articles. Look to see what the editors write and publish, who the journalists are, what the articles contain in the way of information about the books, the authors, and their stories.
Make a list of the key content you see and realize that this list reveals both the editorial style and readership interests of the media you are studying.
Now use the 3 I Technique and start writing headlines, leads, sentences, paragraphs, and ends that mimic the articles you see.
If you use this process carefully, when you get through you have created a draft article that will very likely have all the characteristics of a feature story that looks like it came right out of the media you are using. You’ve done this on the first try without much pain at all.
Now polish it up and turn it into a news release. Send it to your target media.
You can also now use this same news release and send it to a custom targeted media list of other media.
There are about 2200 media that you can pitch that will consider stories about children’s books and authors in the US and Canada.
This is one of the best ways I know to be successful when you try for reviews and stories.
If all you do is seek a book review, you are narrowing your chances of getting media coverage. Book reviews occupy a very small portion of the overall publication. You have far greater opportunity for media coverage if you expand your horizons and look at other sections of the publications you seek to be in.
To avoid the risk and stigma of being classified as a self-publisher and experiencing the negative response associated with such a determination, you must first make sure that your book has the quality and content of a professionally produced product. This is a given.
Assuming it passes muster, then you must then bring into your pitch for media coverage, news angles and story content that goes well beyond what is covered on the book review pages. You must be totally aware of the type of news, educational information, entertainment information, and human interest data that is used in the other parts of the media publication (or tv or radio show) that you want to be in. Then you must consciously and strategically array and incorporate this type of data and information into your news release.
If you look over the stories in the NOLA search you will see that they do appear to be quite discriminating in what they choose to publish. But there are media coverage opportunities you can aim at. The big area of opportunity appears to be in local book events with a strong community involvement element.
To maximize your chances, you must identify the topics and the content of the articles that you see and then propose and present comparable content.
Now there is a diversity of content demonstrated in the articles. Learn from them. Identify from these articles the characteristics and information that is deemed newsworthy and do your best to present comparable information about yourself.
Just realize that no matter what you do, the media you are pitching to may still have a standard for “celebrity” that may be very difficult indeed to achieve. In the case of NOLA, if you look over the articles they publish on children’s book authors, you will see that the “celebrity” standard is indeed quite high indeed. In the past year, it does not appear that they have even written on article about a local author unless he or she was indeed a best seller or had “national celebrity” status.
You may think that you deserve to be there, but these media may simply still decide that you do not have what they are looking for to justify the coverage to their audience. Accept it and move on. Don’t get in a slump over the media you can’t please. They are making editorial decisions that keep them thriving economically as publishers. Realize that they are very sensitive to the character of their articles and editorial coverage. There are economic reasons that force them to maintain rather strict policies on what they can publish, so as to avoid any loss of revenue. The “self-publishing stigma” is one of those areas. Imagine the consequences of giving media coverage to low quality books. Understand what happens to subscriptions and advertising revenue if the audience decides, that was a pretty poorly done book you wrote about. The quality of the paper goes down if the quality of the content fails to stay at the levels that the paying audience expects and demands. So realize and understand the plight of your fellow publishers. They too are trying to stay alive publishing.
My advice is to try your best, allow yourself to fail, and move on. Stay focused on working with the media that will allow you to reach the people that matter the most to you. Like my client Andy Andrews says “what you focus on get bigger”.
So focus on getting beyond the book pages. Use the 3 I technique to bring your proposal up to the caliber and style of the media you want to be in.
Then present it to that media and all sorts of other similar media who will be interested in this sort of content. You will find that when you use these techniques to create a quality media proposal that contains the type of information, you will see other media respond to that quality content as well.
You can use this combination of tactics any time to maximize your media coverage and success.
Go for it!
December 27th, 2010 by Paul Krupin
Book publicity and selling more books
Question Posted on Independent Authors at Yahoo Groups.
>> Do book reviews sell book? Yes, and the review sites can prove it, because they get paid a percentage of the “buy-through” from Amazon. They don’t sell that many, and more nonfiction than fiction, but they do sell. And why not try to get our books reviewed? There are only so many options open to us. We can try to place an article in a magazine or newspaper, we can try to get book reviews, we can enter contests and hope for the best, we can do book club talks, and we can visit our local book stores and try to get signings. Why not try them all? I’d stand in front of Costco with a banjo and balloon hat if I thought it would help. I write books that I hope people will read. How they find my book is immaterial to me. I write books that I hope people will read. How they find my book is immaterial to me. < <
I just don't believe that it's smart to rely on the "proof that reviews work" for others and make the assumption that the same process will work for you.
I also believe that if you are writing to create a real business, then how people find your book is crucial to your survival and success.
There are many choices an author/publisher can make when deciding how to profit off one's intellectual property. Hope is not a strategy. Systematic carefully targeted communication to specific groups of high probability markets of people with money, with dedicated monitoring and continuous improvement is a strategy.
The Naked Cowboy stands in Times Square in his underwear playing his guitar.
That's how he communicates with HIS PEOPLE. He's built a successful nationally recognized brand doing this.
He entertains and stimulates sufficient numbers of people who buy his music.
There's a teenage kid with hair down to his knees who plays a screaming guitar a la Jimi Hendrix each day in Santa Monica who also is doing pretty well.
So maybe standing in front of Costco with a banjo and a balloon isn't such a bad idea.
If it works for you, do it!
YOU have to determine how you can reach and communicate with the people who matter to you. If what matters is sales, then that means you HAVE to know how you are communicating so that the action you produce is sales.
Look at this model:
Write a book. Self-Publish in ten ebook formats and POD. Have the book available at Amazon and Google and dozens or even thousands of other e-stores. Send the eBook to book reviewers by email. Get reviews. Sell books.
Sounds pretty good, doesn't it?
What if YOUR PEOPLE, don't read the reviews.
What if THE REVIEWERS, won't even accept the ebook.
Yet this is what lots of people are doing. They write the book and pitch to a limited number of book reviewers. Then fail and stop.
I see this all the time. Sometimes the problem is the book. Some books simply aren't that good. This is one serious problem.
Sometimes the book is fine, but the author and the publisher don't take the actions needed to reach THEIR PEOPLE. And they don't have the stamina to go the distance. They stop before they learn how to turn THEIR PEOPLE on.
To me and my clients, this question is one that turns on return on investment. If the goal of writing and publishing is to produce sales, and there is only so much time and money to be invested in marketing, promoting and publicizing, then the determining factor is how many books can you sell?
People do write to try and make some money. You have to care about how people find out about you and your writing if sales are important to you. If you don't care, then there is very little chance that enough people will ever learn about you and buy what you have to offer.
My point is that YOU have to decide how to spend your time and what you receive from your efforts.
Book reviews are one option.
Feature stories are another.
You can embark on a program of speaking and or doing entertainment. People are successful in producing income and attracting attention that triggers action (e.g., sales).
Which tactic works the best for you? Do you know?
The LA Times article BOOK PUBLISHERS SEE THEIR ROLE AS GATEKEEPERS SHRINK (http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-gatekeepers-20101226,0,7119214.story) is pointing out that it is possible to create writings and develop audiences using the new technologies that are available. The article only hints at what JA Konrath and the other authors are doing to gain attention for their writings so that they do indeed sell books. The article says “In addition to Konrath, bestselling author Seth Godin, science fiction writer Greg Bear and action novelist David Morrell recently have used Internet tools to put their works online themselves.”
This article fills people with hopeful and vague ideas that the future is here and that this type of success is going to become more commonplace.
And it may indeed for some.
BTW. Look at this article! It points out exactly what I am saying. It’s not a book review. It’s a human interest feature story. It is even a shining example of one of my favorite rules — the DPAA + H rule. It’s dramatic, personal, and tells stories of achievement in the face of adversity + humor.
So it does attract reader attention. It is emotionally engaging and even galvanizes people with visions of hope that they too can be a wildly successful author without being raked over the coals by classical mainstream publishers. It highlights the apparent simplicity of the new publishing economic model.
It also identifies the authors by name. It brands each one so that anyone who looks them up can now be exposed and potentially buy everything they have available.
Great article. This is an example of the very best type of media coverage authors can get.
Is it entertaining? Yes. Is it really helpful? Let’s look for the practical value.
Seth Godin and Stephen King can write just about anything they want and it will sell. They not only have created a huge national following, but they’ve each created consistent, high performing diverse platforms of communication that allow them to reach and sell directly to THEIR PEOPLE. They have created astoundingly successful communications systems that persuade people to take action.
Most people do not have these “Internet tools” in place. In fact, many authors write and publish without even thinking about how to reach out and touch someone, anyone. They don’t think about how to do so consistently, so that can run a writing and publishing business profitably and consistently.
The article doesn’t help most of us very much at all. In fact, the end of the article highlights what is identified as the biggest challenge to successful publishing:
“Indeed, the challenge in a world where anyone can publish a book is getting people to pay attention…. In a blog post titled “Moving on,” about his decision to self-publish, Godin wrote that “my mission is to figure out who the audience is, and take them where they want and need to go, in whatever format works.”
Seth Godin is talking my language. This is the field I work in. Targeted PR.
So back to reality.
You get to choose what you want to do.
And if you want to make money with your publishing, here’s my suggestion.
Follow the money.
The country is huge – in the US alone you have 330 million people. The potential is phenomenal. If you can develop a process for reaching people you can do very well. I believe you can even learn how to do this starting one on one in your back yard, anywhere.
I even came up with a cute little acronym which describes how to do this.
Think about what you do that turns people on. Test it. Get a sale.
Ask people who reacted the way you wanted them to. Ask them, “What did I do that turned you on?”
Capture it. Record it. Document it. Then prove it.
If it works, do it again. Test it again. Improve it by asking again.
Then repeat this process till you can stand in a room or present to 25 people and get half the people in the audience to hand you money.
Then use the many technologies you have at your disposal to present, broadcast and target YOUR PEOPLE with this proven message.
Decide what marketing actions to take and then document the sales and profits you receive.
Compare it to other actions you can take. Be systematic. Identify a pathway to profits. Determine if you have developed a process of steps that can be duplicated.
If it works, then do it some more. If it doesn’t, then stop and do something else.
Bring it on.
August 15th, 2010 by Paul Krupin
wish fulfillment as a publicity strategy
You see it in best selling books and movies. You can do it yourself if you think about it and try.
The element is wish fulfillment.
It must be so vivid that your audience can visualize it, taste it, feel it.
It can be the feeling of overcoming all odds and achieving success.
It can be the vision of being healthy or wealthy.
It can be the freedom to choose, the enjoyment of love or the magnificence of winning the race.
It can be the indulgence of eating chocolate.
It can be the thrill of flying down a mountainside or soaring like a bird.
It can be the excitement and anticipation of heading into a battle to save people from harm.
You identify the wish you can give to a media audience and then offer it up to the media on a silver platter.
Whose dreams and visions can you fulfill today?
Do your very best. Tell people what they can do to achieve their deepest hopes and desires.
Make their dreams come true.
April 15th, 2010 by Paul Krupin
Book Reviews VS. Feature Stories - Which Sells More?
I personally don’t believe that book reviews sell as many books as do feature stories. Yes, they have a role to play, but it’s actually a very limited role. The real gains are to be made with galvanizing feature stories.
The key to understanding this is that book reviews tend to simply show and tell the book and what’s inside the book while good feature stories are designed to galvanize and get people emotionally involved. If what people see gives them an experience, then they are far more inclined to take the action desired, which is to step closer to the book and the author. Articles about the author also tend to produce a professional branding effect. this means that if people read and like what they see, then they will be inclined to buy everything the author has for sale.
This means that if you put down the book, stop selling the product for a second and focus on doing what you do best – entertaining your audience and giving them your best, then this is when you stand your best chance of saying and doing something that will really turn people on.
Give people an experience. Make them laugh, cringe, make them hungry, solve a painful problem, make them feel good, feel bad, feel sexy, or feel awed and inspired.
Do that and they’ll remember you.
That’s what really causes people to pay attention and buy what you are selling.
April 12th, 2010 by Paul Krupin
Getting book reviews can be hard even with a really good book
Client had me send out a news release for a crime fiction mystery novel. The news release was transmitted on Feb 16 and produced 50 requests for review copies in four days.
It’s now April (three months later) and he has received exactly three reviews. Those reviews were all quite favorable.
But the client wonders, “is that all there will be?” He wrote “I originally thought by sending out the press releases, that all I had to do was to wait for those who solicited a copy of my book to read it, then they would do a review.”
It was not hard getting the book review media interested. 50 requests for review copies off of a single emailed news release for a fiction book is really quite good.
So why the low coverage? Why the lukewarm response from the book reviewers?
Is it the book? Maybe. It’s a relatively thick book, 426 pages, clearly self published, limited national distribution. Author is Canadian resident. Cover could be improved.
Is three reviews good or should there be more? There may yet be more to come, but three out of 50 is six percent, and that may be a very good reflection of what the media sees as the relative number of people who will be interested in this genre. It may be a very good reflection of the perceived interest in the marketplace.
Buit this is pure armchair speculation. You need hard data to make business decisions.
So what can you do?
You can call the media who received the review copies and ask them for feedback.
It may be that they simply haven’t gotten to it yet. They are busy people with their own lives, businesses and priorities.
It may also be that once the book reviewers actually see the book, they simply decide “this is not right for my audience”.
But without calling to ask them and see if they will be frank and give an honest and objective appraisal, this is pure speculation.
Call and ask. But be prepared for some hard to accept feedback.
People may not like your book.
They may resent you asking for this feedback.
They may not give you what you are asking.
You may not like what they say.
So if you do call media and ask them, be prepared.
Are you tough enough?