Issue #843 Aug. 16, 2014
Publisher: Joan Stewart
“Tips, Tricks and Tools for Free Publicity”
In This Issue
- How to Take a Great Selfie
- Invite Media to Participate
- Authors, Play Dress-up
- Hound Video of the Week
This Week in the Hound House:
My friend and I are visiting Madison, Wisconsin this weekend for one of our favorite summer jaunts: the giant farmer’s market around the State Capitol building. Last year, I forgot where I parked the car (so typical of me). Heading for home, we trudged from one parking garage to the next, hauling bags stuffed with melons, sweet corn and other products. We finally found the car. There’s got to be a app for that.
1. How to Take a Great Selfie
The next time you’re tempted to grab your phone and shoot a selfie for your Facebook page, think twice about how bad it could look.
You know the one I’m talking about. It’s so overexposed that you look like Casper the Friendly Ghost. Here are three tips from photographer David Peterson on how to take a great selfie:
–Know your good side and your bad angles. To make your face look slimmer, shoot your selfie from slightly above.
–Using a smart phone? Apply a filter to soften angles and hide a less-than-perfect complexion.
–Understand how stupid the photo could look if you aren’t aware of your background. You can see an excellent example of this in Dave’s blog post “How to take a great selfie.”
Carrie Murphy found four cool apps that will help you take better selfies.
Important Note: Most selfies I’ve seen aren’t ready for prime time publicity. So you’d be smart not to use them in a publicity campaign.
2. Invite Media to Participate
Don’t just ask journalists, broadcasters and bloggers to cover your story. Involve them.
Launching a new app? Invite tech writers to beta test it.
Do you help slobs clean up their act? A professional organizer can call the local TV station and offer to show a messy TV producer how to stay better organized. It’s a story with great visuals, custom-made for TV.
When I worked as a reporter at a newspaper many years ago, I was assigned to cover an event in which a hypnotist was doing mass hypnosis sessions to help people stop smoking or lose weight. I volunteered to be hypnotized. I lost 15 pounds and wrote a follow-up story that was so much better than a story I could have written from the sidelines. The following year, the event was sold out.
My “Special Report #42: Tips for Letting Reporters Experience Your Story, Not Just Write About It,” give you lots more ideas on how to involve the media. It’s one of 52 reports that you can buy for half price only until midnight Monday night. If you’ve been eyeing the reports, hoping for a special offer, this is it. Use the coupon code SUMMERSALE and click “Apply”.
3. Authors, Play Dress-up
When Julie Hawkins does a book signing, she tells her friends to come in costume and bring their guns.
“I’m a Civil War author and get my friends to dress up in period clothing,” she says. “I get soldiers with their guns and ladies in beautiful gowns to attend the signings. People are always drawn to characters in costume.”
It got such great response that SHE started dressing up and going to Civil War reenactments with copies of her book, A Beautiful Glittering Lie (by J.D.R. Hawkins).
“Not only is it great exposure, but it’s a ton of fun. My husband and I attended the 150th Anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg last year, and it was a huge success!”
With lots of publicity to boot.
That was one of the publicity ideas I shared during Wednesday’s webinar on “How to Generate Story Ideas for Your Book Publicity Campaign.”
I let Publicity Hounds pick my brain and I shared my best ideas for their books. If you missed the call, you can listen to the replay. It’s on my YouTube channel along with two other videos on book publishing. Go to the Publishing at Sea 2015 playlist and watch the replays.
4. Hound Video of the Week
This one is called “My roommate’s chihuahua wants to kill me.” The little guy’s teeth remind me of Dracula.