Newspapers are notoriously stingy with space these days.
With sliding ad revenues and increasing competition from the Internet, print publications have sliced their budgets, using fewer reporters to do more work that is placed is fewer pages. Book review columns have been cut at many publications, and other just don’t believe author news is news to readers.
Magazines aren’t much different.
While the market is tight to get publicity in a print publications, it is possible. Here are a few tips to help:
- Send an emailed news release, no more than three paragraphs long and with live links. Do not include attachments, as these will immediately shuffle your message to SPAM.
- Limit print releases to two pages maximum and do not send more than once – especially by fax. Releases sent multiple times are immediately labeled as JUNK and trashed.
- Follow up with a phone call to the appropriate editor a week after you send a release, if you haven’t heard anything. Typically, you will deal with features. However, you may deal with the metro editor if you tie yourself and your work to a current event.
- Don’t send a generic email to a database of media people. They hate to be a number. Personalize your emails whenever possible for maximum impact. Also, be sure to constantly update your email database for reporters, as they switch jobs frequently.
- Don’t use your own name as the publicist contact. Reporters simply will not take you seriously. If you don’t have a publicist, ask a friend or family member to stand in that position. All they have to do is arrange an interview for you.
- Suggest submitting a guest column for the newspaper’s blog or Web site. While space in print is limited, Web sites are always hungry for new content.
- Approach newspaper blogger for interviews, or send them a link to your book trailer. Again, bloggers are hungry for new content.
- Follow the rules for newspapers above.
- Target magazines that have something to do with your genre. If your book features an elderly man with health issues, approach AARP magazine or publications where you can discuss the disease.
- While newspapers are more immediate, magazines tend to plan ahead. Be sure to contact them several months before your book is released, so they can plan space for your story.
More on Market My Novel:
HOT TIP: Even if you cannot get publicity in print, check the publication Web sites for a free community calendar, where you can list book signings and other events.0