We work with authors to both promote, as well as position their books - with the goal of maximizing marketing/exposure.
And while the subject matter varies, we approach books largely the same way we would position someone's brand: Dissecting the audience, identifying the core messages and look for additional opportunities that the company (or author) can use it to build on future ROI, tools, platforms, etc.
It's a fun process and one which benefits the author before they even begin to write. The reasoning is quite simple: PR people are in charge of selling the thing in the end and gaining people's interest; how it would "stand out" to media, what might make it "jump off the shelf" or what the "current trends" are that you could capitalize on during promotion. Wouldn't you want to have some of those ideas and that feedback before you finalize your labour of love?
When to begin with PR? Most people would answer - when I'm planning the launch party. Not always so. We like to be involved around the time you have your outline, or chapter breakdown flushed out. Put it all on the table. This team will be more able to dissect and pull out the core messages, look for key indicators, patterns, flow and opportunities inside each chapter to make the book come together and even expand its shelf life.
Will it curb my creativity? Absolutely not. In fact, there are key defining factors that an outside PR person can tune into that you might be missing. Simply put - you are too close to the project to see the outlying opportunities by a simple adjustment or refocusing of core concepts. Small shifts can make big impact.
Is my book PR worthy? This is a good question. At times it may feel as if there are no 'new ideas', just recycled ones. Sometimes we stumble on books whose subject matter is so revolutionary, groundbreaking that it's as if we're hearing it for the first time. Then there are books that have passion and heart, but unfortunately will be swimming in a sea of similar subject matter, trying to stand out. We don't pitch gimmicks - but we do know how to pull out the most timely, newsworthy and significant subject matter that will resonate with the public, media and your audience.
Is that an expense I can afford? Think of it as saving money on printing a revised edition! If a book is positioned properly the first time around, you will save yourself the pain of revising and adding printing costs, or worse, having boxes of books that go unsold because they didn't quite "hit the mark" with who you were trying to reach.
Remember, there is not only your readers to think about, there are editors, critics, enthusiasts, bloggers, experts - and you will need to reach them all to make any real impact.
We absolutely love authors, and mostly we love when people start buying and SHARING their book! The stories inside the book, that's the writer's job - but the stories behind your book are infinite and it's our job to tell those too.
Now - Go Write Your Book!