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How to Fix a Broken Publicity Campaign

May 31, 2008
What's positioning? It's the art of presenting your message in such a way as to convey an immediate understanding of your subject. It "positions" your topic with other like topics in the news so that those reading your materials can easily understand the subject and how it compares to others like it.

Although positioning has been used by Madison Avenue, there is still little understanding of this concept beyond that world. If used correctly it can put a derailed campaign back on track and create huge media success.

The problem I've seen with press releases about books is that they're written with an eye toward a book reviewer...which is a perfect message for a book reviewer! But sadly this press release will completely miss the mark when it comes to attracting the attention of radio, TV and print media as the majority of them are not book reviewers

If you're not a big name author then you will need a lot more strategic creativity in your presentation to the media. Let's face it, with the massive number of titles released each year, there's a demand on publishers and authors to get aggressive about promotion.

This battle for attention makes the job of book promotion increasingly more difficult. Positioning may be the missing link that will pull you through. Here are some tips that we use at EMSI to position our authors to the media:

1) The writer creating the press materials must have a solid understanding of not only the subject of the book, but also its relevance to today's society.

2) Look through the book and find those pieces of information, or "pearls", which set it apart from books on similar topics. Also keep an eye out for those statements or assertions made by the author that are alarming or ground-breaking.

3) Find out how similar topics are being portrayed in the media. How does yours compare? Is it different? Is there a new slant to it?

4) Distill this information into a two page release positioned with current news or events and an exciting headline. Remember that you've got to grab and keep the attention of a very busy producer or journalist.

5) Don't require the media to use their imagination to see how the topic would be of interest to their listeners, viewers or readers. Give them an instant concept of what you are suggesting in the headline. That's positioning at its best.

6) Remember to include those special features about the author that positions him or her as an authority on the topic and a qualified guest!
About the Author
Marsha Friedman has been a leading authority on publicity for authors for nearly two decades as CEO of Event Management Services, Inc (EMSI). If you would like to receive her free Ebook "How to Be a Great Talk Radio Guest" visit http://www.emsincorporated.com.
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