Should I Hire A Book Publicist?

Having a dedicated book publicist can increase your legitimacy, afford you unique publicity opportunities, and free up hours of time that you might have spent trying to make contacts. But just as with any other element of your book marketing plan, having a book publicist will not guarantee book sales. If you have some room in your budget to have the extra help, a book publicist can be an excellent investment. They have established relationships with reviewers, editors, and other important media people you might not otherwise have access to. But even if you do decide to hire a book publicist, you only have their services for a finite period of time and they cannot work miracles overnight. Your ultimate success depends on your continued commitment to promoting your book from your end.

So what, exactly, does a book publicist do? The main aim of a book publicist is to generate media and public interest in a book and, where applicable, its author. Traditionally, a book publicist goes about this by focusing their attention on promoting the book prior to its publication. A big part of that promotion involves the writing and distribution of news press releases to key outlets.

Because magazines and other print outlets typically have long lead times, a book publicist will need to secure media coverage for a book several months before it is due to come out in stores.  With a major decrease in space for reviews and a major increase in popular book blogs, book publicists are also taking to online methods to increase exposure for books. Book publicists may also be expected to take care of travel arrangements and media appearances in the event that an author goes on tour with their book. There are media outlets who will only deal with publicists and prefer to not deal directly with authors. Many stores and buyers are the same way. A book publicist can offer objectivity where an author cannot.

The main thing to remember as you consider hiring a publicist is that what you are really paying for is their time.  A publicist would be a key investment for an author who considers writing to be their secondary career. If you intend to focus on something outside of your book as your primary career, a book publicist could be very valuable to you. Promoting a book takes a lot of time and dedication. Making pitches, returning calls and emails, following leads, keeping track of who has books and when things are expected to print or run, etc. is definitely a full time job. But a well-rounded publicity campaign with a book publicist can easily run between five and ten thousand dollars. If you are not able to make the financial investment, you should look at your other options.

Go Publish Yourself offers affordable marketing services as well as resources and articles to help get you started on conducting your own campaign.

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