What kind of press coverage can a publicist get me?
By “press coverage”, we mean coverage in the different forms of traditional media: newspapers, magazines, online newspapers and magazines, radio and television. In other words, “blogs” are listed as a different category on our marketplace: blog tours.
Pitching to the traditional media outlets requires both a network (i.e. relationships with people from within those media) and PR experience. Because of this, publicists can often be specialized in certain genres and outlets.
Of course, the kind of press coverage you will get will mainly depend on your genre, target market and story. If your book addresses a niche market, your publicist will identify which outlets specialize in that market and pitch the story to them. Inversely, if your book has a wider audience, and a very strong selling point, publicists will try to reach more mainstream media outlets.
At the end of the day, hiring a publicist cannot guarantee you coverage of any kind. It can, however, guarantee that the right story around your book will be pitched to the right outlet by the right person. And if you do get media coverage, it can be a huge turning point in your career. This is what you are paying for.
Is press coverage useful for any genre?
It is undeniable that certain genres are more difficult to sell to the media than others, and, in general, non-fiction is better suited for publicity than fiction. This is mainly a question of market competition and differentiation potential.
Non-fiction works usually either address a specific question (how-to or reference books) or focus on a precise theme (narrative non-fiction), making it easy for your publicist to identify your market and target it through niche publications. They are also easier to “differentiate”: no two memoirs are the same, whereas many fiction works follow very similar patterns.
For better or for worse, the only “differentiation” factor right now in genre fiction is how the book has been published. This is why most fiction publicists only work with traditional publishing companies, and traditionally published authors. Unless your self-published fiction work has been hugely successful, it will never be featured or reviewed in a major media outlet. That said, there are thousands of fiction blogs out there that are open to reviewing and promoting new fiction works –whatever their publishing path was.
Do I need to choose between “blog tour” and “press coverage”?
Definitely not. In fact, we highly recommend authors and publishers tick both boxes when reaching out to our publicists. You should leave as many potential venues open as possible, and let them decide whether your book would benefit more from being pitched to traditional outlets or to niche blogs, or even both. Read more about blog tours.
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