Perhaps you don’t expect to be the next Melissa Hartwig, but you are most likely working tirelessly to get noticed. You want to build your following and see your readers excited about your latest recipe. If you have a cookbook, you should consider hiring a publicist to help promote it. Uploading your book to Amazon and hoping for the best isn’t going to work, nor is sending an email blast out to your subscribers (who already know about you). And don’t try to do it all yourself. You may have some great connections in the health + wellness industry, but a few podcast interviews isn’t enough. The world is too big and you have too much competition. A publicist will help make your book stand out.
You probably already have a good handle on some of the parts of your cookbook promotion (like managing your Instagram or Facebook pages), but a publicist can make a big difference in building your brand even further.
A good publicist will create a PR campaign tailored to meet your specific needs. Let them know what areas you have covered and they’ll tell you what they can do to help. Teamwork makes the dream work. By all means, reach out to your connections, send out your email blast, and let your publicist do the same with their contacts.
PR STRATEGIES & TACTICS:
A publicist will spend a majority of your PR campaign on media outreach. They will research and pitch you to the media outlets that would be the best fit to reach your target audience. This includes magazines, newspapers, TV & radio shows, websites, and more. Your publicist will pitch to get articles written about your book in the media (from small blogs to major news outlets). Each placement (no matter how big or small) is an opportunity to reach new followers. Some examples include: Self, Women’s Health, Shape, Mind Body Green, the Los Angeles Times, Huffington Post, Cooking Light, Food & Wine Magazine. The health + wellness industry is huge and the list of writers, reporters, bloggers, and social media influencers is endless, which means lots of opportunities for exposure. If there are any specific outlets that you would like your publicist to target, just let them know. Media exposure will help get your book noticed not just locally, but nationally, and even internationally.
SOCIAL MEDIA INFLUENCERS
A publicist will also help get the word out about your cookbook by placing it directly in the hands of social media influencers. They will reach out to popular bloggers, Instagrammers, and YouTubers to ask if they would be interested in reading your book (and sharing it with their followers). If you have a gluten-free cookbook, your publicist will research and pitch you to Instagrammers that are Gluten-Free. The idea is that by sending them a complimentary copy of your cookbook, they will share it on their Instagram Stories or post about it on their feed for their followers to see (and buy). Each placement, no matter how big or small, is an opportunity to build your fan base and reach more potential customers. Your publicist can help coordinate sponsored posts, giveaways, blog posts, feature articles, and more. They can also get bloggers to share a recipe from your cookbook on their blog (with a link in their post to buy your book).
A publicist can also help coordinate reviews for your book. By sending out complimentary review copies, your publicist will ask each person to publish a review for the book on Amazon and/or Goodreads (in addition to their website or channel). As your book reviews increase, so will your sales.
Your publicist can help coordinate podcast interviews for you. Some examples include: Food Psych, Balanced Bites, Nutrition Diva, iTunes Fitness + Nutrition Podcasts, The Balanced Blonde, Well-Fed Women, The Nourished Podcast, Food Heaven Podcast, Recipes for Life, The Ultimate Health Podcast. There are so many podcasts out there that your publicist could pitch. Podcast interviews are a great way to promote your book.
EVENTS & SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS
A publicist can help coordinate book signings and speaking engagements for you. They could contact your local bookstores, libraries, book clubs, book fairs, and other types of author events to see if they would be interested in having you come speak and sign copies of your book. They may also be able to reach out to conferences to pitch you as a speaker.
Don’t underestimate the power of PR. A publicist can make a world of a difference in promoting your book. These are just a few of the ways. Take your PR as seriously as you take your food and you will see an increase in your followers, fan base, and book sales.