Promoting Books on Radio and TV

promoting your book on the mediaLocal TV is continually on the look out for interesting guests on chat shows etc., and you will fit the bill if you:

have some accomplishments to your name: you've published collections, given talks and signings.

your latest book is topical, of particular interest to the local community and/or has received rave reviews in national outlets.

come across as a lively personality.

 

You need to do three things:

Send out a television news release — like a press release but containing a complete media kit particularly emphasizing your public performances and any previous radio or TV appearances. It should include a routing box listing the News Director, Lifestyle Editor and Chat Show Hosts, all by name.

Create and send out to all chat show hosts an "available for interview" sheet (see below).

Call the chat show hosts directly, stressing your experience and availability at short notice (if the case: 'no shows' are often a problem).

 

The "available for interview" sheet will look like this:

 

AVAILABLE FOR INTERVIEW

photo

Name

Brief biography

 

 

Accomplishments

 

Details of your book

 

Why and how it will be of interest to viewers

 

 

Available: area and dates

Contact information

 

Once accepted, you must prepare carefully:

Study the program: how guests are seated, dressed, how long they speak for. Learn from this, and if necessary practise before a mirror or the family to project a friendly but assured personality.

Be word perfect about your book: title, publisher, price, where available, general contents.

Anticipate likely questions and have answers off pat.

Type a few questions onto an index card and give this to the interviewer before the program.

Bring an art board with the cover of your book and a couple of poems clearly printed. Give this to the director beforehand, to be held up during the show or used as fade-in or fade-out.

Arrange for local bookshops to have sufficient copies of your book to sell once the interview is over.

Be ready to answer telephone calls on the book and matters arising.

Above all, try to enjoy yourself, and communicate that pleasure at being in front of the camera.

Radio Promotion

Don't overlook the less glamorous radio interview and appearance: these generally last longer than TV shows, and reach a wider audience. In Britain, and possibly the States, that audience tends also to be better educated, and more interested in literature and the arts generally.

Your approach will be as for the TV appearance, i.e. the radio station will take you seriously if:

You have some solid accomplishments to your name: you've published collections or previous books, given talks and signings.

Your latest book is topical, of particular interest to the local community and/or has received rave reviews in national outlets.

You come across as a friendly and informative personality.


As with the TV appearance, you will need to:

send out a radio news release — like a press release but containing a complete media kit particularly emphasizing your public performances and any previous radio or TV appearances. It should include a routing box listing the News Director, Lifestyle Editor and Chat Show Hosts, all by name.

Create and send out to all chat show hosts an "available for interview" sheet (see below).

Call the chat show hosts directly, stressing your experience and availability at short notice (if the case: 'no shows' are often a problem).

The "available for interview" sheet will look like this:

AVAILABLE FOR INTERVIEW

photo

Name

Brief biography

 

 

Accomplishments

 

Details of your book

 

Why and how it will be of interest to listeners

Available: area and dates

 

Contact information

 

 

The preparation is reasonably similar:


Study the program, particularly how guests respond to questions and pick up from each others' remarks.

Telephone the director and ask about fellow guests: you have to be as interested in their work as they should be in yours.

Be word perfect about your book: title, publisher, price, where available, general contents.

Anticipate likely questions but don't have the answers too off pat: there will be time to explore the issues, and other guests will want to chip in.

Type a few questions onto an index card and give this to the interviewer before the program.

Arrange for local bookshops to have sufficient copies of your book to sell once the interview is over.

Be ready to answer telephone calls on the book and matters arising.

You'll probably be asked to read a poem or passage — so practise a few at an open reading, or before a discerning group of friends. Promoting books should be a pleasure.

 

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