The Author’s One-Hit Blunder

Why Frequent Placement in Specialty Publications Generates the Discovery of Your Book

This month’s featured article comes from Public Relations expert Russell Trahan, of the firm PR/PR:
     It’s no secret that book discovery is an uphill battle for many new authors. Unfortunately, there isn’t an “Old Boys Authors’ Club” in existence, conducting backroom dealings that guarantee you a spot atop The New York Times Best Sellers list; there is sufficient legwork involved. With the frustration that often accompanies a lack of immediate sales of the book comes an insatiable desire to accelerate the success-timeline by seeking out visibility via the big names in print media. What many authors fail to realize, however, is that a quick quote in a daily newspaper or newsstand magazine amounts to little more than a temporary ego-massage. For authors who desire sustained, long-term recognition of their name and book, the answer lies in the frequent visibility gained from article placements in specialty publications.
     Many specialty publications—the ones that focus on topics such as women and parenting, senior lifestyle, or specific aspects of business—accept third-party, bylined articles. Providing exposure to authors with a variety of expertise or unique stories to tell, they are an excellent resource to employ while creating awareness about your forthcoming book. These magazines and journals may not be found next to candy in the checkout line, but they are found exactly where you’ll benefit most—on the desks of potential clients and in doctors’ waiting rooms.
     Where these types of publications provide the most impact is in their readership. As an author, you’re probably acutely aware of a certain niche that would benefit most from what you have to say. Each of these publications focuses on a specific aspect of its topic, which allows you to guarantee that the message in your article is reaching your target audience.
     Another valuable aspect to consider is the possibility of parlaying article placements into public speaking engagements. Considering these publications make it into the hands of industry thought-leaders daily, your pieces cement you as an expert in their associated fields. Event coordinators are constantly seeking qualified individuals to deliver breakout sessions or keynotes at their annual conferences—and many times, the speakers are gleaned from within the pages of industry publications. Couple your speaking fee with the ability to sell your book at the back of the room, and you begin to see where the profitability of article placement is derived.
     So while there is the allure of having your quote featured in The Wall Street Journal, oftentimes the excitement is short-lived and provides little to boost the brand awareness of you and your book. The answer lies in creating name-recognition by putting yourself in front of your target audience on a consistent basis, and this is best achieved by placing articles in specialty publications.
Russell Trahan is the Owner and President of PR/PR. He has more than 20 years in the public relations field. He started his career working with Chamber of Commerce and Downtown Business Associations, coordinating their marketing, public relations, and event management. Gathering experience at a top 10 market radio station, Russell then returned to the nonprofit sector. After a tenure with the Walt Disney Company, he joined PR/PR. Russell was educated at a liberal-arts college in Southern Oregon and attended the Institute for Organizational Management at Stanford University.

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