Spring has sprung — in the northern hemisphere anyway. Greetings to our readers in the south who are heading into fall and winter now.
The past week Passover Seders were celebrated, and Easter is now upon us. However you celebrate, we’re wishing you a joyous new beginning because that’s what spring really represents. Starting over. A rebirth. A new cycle of growth after a long cold winter — which was filled with hardships for many this year — and now we can see the flowers and the trees blooming, new baby birds and squirrels arriving into the world, and everything just waking up…including us.
As you know, I’m all about books, and media, and publicity and marketing. Because it’s spring, maybe it’s time for a rebirth or new beginning for your book, too! Even if you have an older book, you can still find ways to make it current and relevant. One of the best and most obvious ways to do that is to tie into the calendar. Below is a list of observances for the month of April. Can your book tie into any of them?
- Alcohol Awareness Month
- Celebrate Diversity Month
- Financial Literacy Month
- National Autism Awareness Month
- National Couple Appreciation Month
- National Garden Month
- National Poetry Month
- National Volunteer Month
- Scottish American Heritage Month
- Stress Awareness Month
This list is by no means exhaustive, but the topics are popular for media interviews, so I want to mention them. If your book speaks to one or more of them, you could find the media is interested in you.
Remember though: When you’re going after coverage like this, any interview you propose would not be about your book itself. The fact that you wrote the book gives you added credibility and a reason to be interviewed. You are the expert, so you’ll have to have your talking points prepared, and be ready for what you suggest the audience do next.
Another type of new beginning, which is more internal, is known as “beginner’s mind.” It’s a term that comes from Zen Buddhism. A quote from Mindful Ambition says this:
When you are new to something, you don’t know anything about it. In order to open your mind to learn, and develop understanding, you adopt a unique mindset. In this state of mind, you are:
- Filled with curiosity to understand things more deeply
- Free of preconceptions of how anything works
- Free of expectations about what will happen
- Open to a world of possibilities, since you don’t yet know what is or isn’t possible
In other words, whatever you have experienced with media in the past, it could be different now. It’s not that you disregard what you know about generating publicity, but you don’t get locked into it. There are always other ways to reach people, but you have to be willing to experiment.
If I were to summarize something I try to do every day, it begins with this question: How can I reach out to media and others about my clients and their books in a way that is new, fresh, different and unique? If you want the real nitty gritty of this process, I do a kind of meditation with this. I quiet the mind, do some relaxation exercises, breathe, and ask a question, whatever it might be. For example, “How can I more easily reach people today? What is a new way I can try that I haven’t tried before?” And then I get quiet and just sit still.
It’s amazing what can come up. “Oh, yes. There’s that journalist who did a cover story of another client. She would love this story.” Or, “Maybe now is the time to reach out to some new people on Signal.” Or, “Who can I talk to who might have a different perspective here that I haven’t considered before?
Questions. Are. Powerful.
There is no one path for creating the kind of visibility and book sales you’re seeing. If anyone tells you there is, well, they have limited themselves. It’s good to know that. Media, publicity, marketing, and outreach is a constantly changing, never ending proposition, and that’s what makes it fun. With that kind of attitude, you can do amazing things!
Spring. New beginnings. Books. Media. Visibility. Book sales. Joy!
To your success!
P.S. As mentioned in the list above, April is Scottish American Heritage Month. I have relatives in Scotland, so I went for a visit during the summer of 2018. While driving fast over the Isle of Skye, music playing, I fell in love with this group. It was magical!
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