Issue #833 July 8, 2014
Publisher: Joan Stewart
“Tips, Tricks and Tools for Free Publicity”
In This Issue
- 5 Reasons to Follow Up Pitches
- Join the Food Fight
- How to Promote an Ebook
- Hound Video of the Week
This Week in the Hound House:
Still chuckling over the sign on my bank teller’s counter: “My fake plants died because I did not pretend to water them.”
1. 5 Reasons to Follow Up Pitches
When you pitch a blogger or a journalist and after a week, hear nothing, what should you do?
Don’t assume they don’t want a follow-up.
They just SAY that. What they really mean is, “We don’t want follow-ups from pests who waste our time.”
Here are five reasons to follow up your pitches:
–Things fall through the cracks on their end.
–Pitches get caught in spam folders.
–They want a good story.
–If you’re in PR or marketing, both of your jobs depend on it.
–The squeaky wheel gets the publicity.
If you can establish the relationship on social media, follow-ups for story pitches are usually OK. But never follow up after you send a press release.
Michelle Tennant of Wasabi Publicity, who pitches top-tier media on behalf of her clients, uses a combination of tweets, texts, phone and snail-mail cards when following up. During the webinar I hosted on The New Rules of Following Up Pitches to Journalists, Michelle and two other top-notch publicists I respect shared the process they use for following up pitches. They explain how many times they follow up and when they call it quits and move on.
You can order the video replay today and save $10 off the regular price of $49.95. Use coupon code FOLLOWUP at check out.
2. Join the Food Fight
The fight over school nutrition guidelines is heating up, long before students return to school in a few months.
This is a perfect opportunity for nutritionists, school administrators, parents, dieticians, cookbook authors and health experts to join the fray.
The School Nutrition Association, which celebrated changes that requiring more fruits and vegetables and less sugar and salt in government-subsidized lunches, proposed by First Lady Michelle Obama, has done an about-face. It’s now leading a lobbying campaign to allow schools to opt out of the very rules it helped to create because students don’t like the new food and aren’t eating it.
On the other side, the association’s critics say dozens of food companies have paid millions in sponsorship fees to the School Nutrition Association, covering more than half of its $10.5 million annual budget.
The media are working on back-to-stories right now. So this is an ideal time to contact local and national media outlets and offer your expert opinion.
Keep you eyes on controversial national issues like this one–perfect for piggybacking your pitches. See these nine examples of how to be the local angle to national stories. I wrote that blog post two years ago but many of the pitching opportunities I mentioned then are still alive.
3. How to Promote Your Ebooks
Authors have been inundating me with questions the last several weeks on how to promote their ebooks.
Publishing them has become so easy, that the much harder task, it turns out, is letting the world know about them.
Here are three ideas:
–Take advantage of websites like Addicted to Ebooks which let authors post a free blurb about ebooks that are free on Amazon.
–For non-fiction, excerpt tips from the book and include them in a press release you send to national magazines. The ebook doesn’t have to be new but the tips still need to be timely.
–Promote your ebook on BookBub, a leading service for publishers and authors looking to reach new readers through limited-time ebook deals. Millions of members turn to BookBub’s daily email to find free and deeply discounted ebooks that match their interests. You’ll find submission tips at their site.
I have dozens more ideas and I’ll present them all at a webinar I’m hosting on Thursday, Aug. 17. I’m telling you now so you can save the date. You can register starting next week.
4. Hound Video of the Week
This 10-minute compilation of short clips shows a variety of animals–fur, feathers and fins–doing funny things. The first clip is for Publicity Hounds and it’s my favorite.