As a publicist and PR coach, the first big challenge with any book is figuring out how it is unique. After all, it comes as no surprise that there is a lot of activity in the marketplace. Many people are writing books on similar subjects, and with so many books being published each year, being able to succinctly say how you are unique is critical in order to stand out from the crowd.
The truth is, standing up is easy. Lots of people are doing that. They’re launching websites, opening social media accounts, blogging, podcasting, YouTubing, etc. That’s all fine and good, but the key question is this: With all of that going on, how are you going to rise above the noise?
Question: How are you going to stand out?
Answer: By uncovering your uniqueness.
Question: How are you different?
Answer: You have to be the red sheep.
In a sea of white, you want to be the red one who stands out.
But how do you uncover your uniqueness? And how do you even know if you are being unique?
Here are some strategies for figuring out your uniqueness.
Ask your friends
I mean that literally. Next time you’re meeting with a friend, explain to them that you’re trying to figure out what sets you apart from others. Ask them what they think is unique about you, and then listen to the answer.
Sometimes someone will tell us what they think is unique about us, and we shut it down. It seems so natural to us that we don’t consider it unique. We might respond with something like, “Oh that. Anyone can do that.” No, not really. You can do that. Lots of people can’t.
Ask your network
You can ask your network what they think is unique about you too. Social media is a great way to get this kind of feedback. You simply want to be mindful of how you ask for the feedback. You don’t want to give the impression that your ego needs stroking. You’re simply asking others for their perspective of you. Something we will never have of ourselves. Then, again, listen for their answers.
Research your niche mates
Niche mates are those authors who write on the same topic as you do. Research them. How do they position themselves? What do they say is unique about themselves? We do this not to copy anyone else, but to see what they do and eliminate it as an option for ourselves. We want to find something unique to us that no one else is doing, but first we have to know what they are doing.
Talk to a PR coach
Talking to a professional in the business of PR and marketing can be wildly helpful. They have experience, expertise, and may be able to point out things that are unique to you in very little time.
Get media training
There’s nothing like media training and formulating key messages to uncover the uniqueness that is you. Media trainers have lots of experience working with authors and with media and may be able to help you hone in on it fast.
One of my side hustles is producing a podcast called Something You Should Know. The beauty of it is that I am pitched by publicists and authors from every direction. I can tell you when something is unique, and when it is overused. For example, I must get 15 pitches a week on the subject of overcoming difficulties and thriving. It’s a good subject, but when 95% of the pitches I get use the same approach, it gets old. When someone comes up with a new idea, my brain is intrigued. That is what you want to be able to do.
Are you the red sheep? You should be. Being unique and able to succinctly and impactfully communicate it to others is the way to get the kind of media coverage you are longing for with regard to your book.
To your success!
P.S. I am currently delivering an online program on publicity for the Nonfiction Authors Association. This week is all about being unique. So how are you unique???
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