Tag Archives: authors

Publicity shebangs that ACTUALLY WORK

The New York Times

For two years or whatever, I blogged three times a week about publicity, speechwriting, public relations and scandals for The New York Times’about.com.  If you are an author, actor, director, politician, professional athlete, rock star, user of social media or otherwise in the public eye, THESE POSTS ARE USEFUL TO YOU. If you live in an ice cave, you can safely ignore all this stuff and go back to tanning that elk hide.

Writing stuff that ACTUALLY WORKS

Why Most PR Products Get Ignored: How to Avoid the Slush Pile

How To Write A Fact Sheet

How To Write A Statement

How To Write A Letter To The Editor

How To Write An Oped

Three Kinds of Opeds

Before You Start Writing An Oped

Reaching Your Audience with Public Service Announcements

How to write and wield TALKING POINTS

Three Blueprints for Talking Points

Talking Points Need Structure and Discipline

Curing the PR Disease of Talking Paragraphs

Using Talking Points

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Guy - Photo by Suhyoon Cho

Guy – Photo by Suhyoon Cho

Reformed journalist. Scribbler of speeches and whatnot. Wrote a thriller that was a finalist for some award.

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Filed under 7 Media Strategy Saturday, Journalism, publicity and scandals, Old Media, which is still Big and Strong

You’re doing it wrong: press releases and press conferences are usually Bad Ideas

The New York Times

For two years or whatever, I blogged three times a week about publicity, speechwriting, public relations and scandals for The New York Times’about.com.  If you are an author, actor, director, politician, professional athlete, rock star, user of social media or otherwise in the public eye, THESE POSTS ARE USEFUL TO YOU. If you live in an ice cave, you can safely ignore all this stuff and go back to tanning that elk hide.

Why reporters HATE press releases

How To Write a Press Release

‘I Want a Press Release’ is Often Wrong

Why Reaching Your Audience Takes More than a Single Press Release

Why A Story Kit Is Often Smarter Than A Single Media Product

Why you should avoid holding press conferences FOREVER AND EVER

When To Hold A Press Conference – And When Not To

Avoiding Big Problems with Press Conferences

Preparing For A Successful Press Conference: Planning And Practice, Location And Length

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Guy - Photo by Suhyoon Cho

Guy – Photo by Suhyoon Cho

Reformed journalist. Scribbler of speeches and whatnot. Wrote a thriller that was a finalist for some award.

Google+

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Filed under 7 Media Strategy Saturday, Journalism, publicity and scandals, Old Media, which is still Big and Strong

Top 10 Myths about Publicity and Public Relations

The New York Times

For two years or whatever, I blogged three times a week about publicity, speechwriting, public relations and scandals for The New York Times’about.com.  If you are an author, actor, director, politician, professional athlete, rock star, user of social media or otherwise in the public eye, THESE POSTS ARE USEFUL TO YOU. If you live in an ice cave, you can safely ignore all this stuff and go back to tanning that elk hide.

Top 10 Myths about Publicity and Public Relations

Top 10 Myths about Public Relations

Myth 1: Any Press is Good Press

Myth 2: PR is All about Press Releases and Press Conferences

Myth 3: Once You Break Through with Publicity, You’re Golden

Myth 4: Publicity is Free and Easy

Myth 5: You Need to Hire an Expensive PR Firm

Myth 6: Good Products Don’t Need Publicity – - Only Bad Products Do

Myth 7: Public Relations Can’t be Measured and is Therefore Worthless

Myth 8: PR Means Schmoozing and Controlling the Press

Myth 9: Only Ex-Reporters Can Do It

Myth 10: Public Relations is Spin, Slogans and Propaganda

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Guy - Photo by Suhyoon Cho

Guy – Photo by Suhyoon Cho

Reformed journalist. Scribbler of speeches and whatnot. Wrote a thriller that was a finalist for some award.

Google+

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Filed under 7 Media Strategy Saturday, Journalism, publicity and scandals, Old Media, which is still Big and Strong

Social media and social networking ARE NOT THE SAME THING

For two years or whatever, I blogged three times a week about publicity, speechwriting, public relations and scandals for The New York Times’ about.com.

IT WAS INTERESTING. Also, I got checks every month from The New York-Frigging Times, which, as a journalism major, is pretty damn cool.

The New York Times

If you are an author, actor, director, politician, professional athlete, rock star, user of social media or otherwise in the public eye, THESE POSTS ARE USEFUL TO YOU.

If you live in an ice cave, you can safely ignore all this stuff and go back to tanning that elk hide.

Social media and social networking ARE NOT THE SAME THING

Word of Mouth and Viral Public Relations: If Your Images Are Strong Enough, You Don’t Need Words

How to Maximize Social Media for Public Relations

Social Media 101: A Revolution in Public Relations

Social Media 201: Different Tools for Different PR Jobs

Are Bloggers Parasites on the Mainstream Media?

How Many Followers and Fans Do You Need?

How to Publish a Daily E-newspaper — Effortlessly

Social Networking Synergy for PR

The Trouble with Twitter

Click and Share — Is it a Smart Idea for Public Relations?

The Shift Toward News on Portable Devices

Mobile News Consumers Are Opinion Leaders

The Shift to Hyper-Local Media

All Public Relations Is Local: Hyper-Local News Is Changing Everything

News Collectors Are Turning Into News Gatherers

What Are News Aggregators, and How Will They Change Public Relations?

How Should PR pros Deal with News Aggregators?

Trends are important, people

Trends in Public Relations

Don’t Believe the Hype: Newspapers Are Alive and Kicking

Media May Be in Flux – But PR Business is Booming Again


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Filed under 7 Media Strategy Saturday, Viral media math

Using free ink and airtime to BUST THROUGH

Earned media — free ink and airtime — is worth a lot to reality stars like Snooki, The Situation and Kim Kardashian, who all extended their 15 minutes of fame into millions of dollars.

Ink and airtime are even MORE valuable for people with actual talent.

Yet if you’re trying to make it — as a writer, an actor, a director, rock star, whatever — it’s hard to get the mass media to pay any attention to you at all.

Read the first evil post: The Twitter, is it NOT for selling books

Getting serious ink and airtime is a great way to bust through, boost your name recognition and make a living at doing what you love. Whatever that may be.

If you haven’t read it, get educated with the second evil post: Forget the Twitter: free ink and airtime are your MOST DANGEROUS WEAPONS

So how do people bust through?

Not everybody is placing their faith in the series of tubes and spending their free time on the Twitter, the Book of Face or their personal blog.

Reporters, editors and producers get zillions of press releases and story kits about new authors, new rock bands, new actors and the latest indie movie made for $9,000 by some up-and-coming director.

They get pitched stories all the time. Most of these pitches go nowhere.

You have to hook the reporter or editor.

A hook isn’t about the quality of the product. Not at all.

Craftsmanship matters latter. I know, This is where we cue up Keanu Reeves:

A news hook is something a reporter can tell his editor, in a sentence, why this story is worth spending column inches on.

THREE NEWS HOOKS THAT FAIL

1) This book / movie / rock band is great!

Hype is typical and horrible. The press never buys it, even if you crank up the hype machine to 11.

In the first place: Even if the hype is true, it’s not newsworthy.

In the second place: Hype is never true.

But let’s pretend it’s true just this once. “Man writes great book / sings glorious song / directs amazing movie” still isn’t something a reporter can pitch to editors.

They know how to pitch “Afghan vet with no arms types novel on Underwood WITH HIS FEET” — because that’s a story, no matter how bad the actual novel may be.

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Filed under 4 Writing Secrets Wednesday, 7 Media Strategy Saturday, Journalism, publicity and scandals, Old Media, which is still Big and Strong, The Twitter, the Book of Face and the Series of Tubes, Viral media math

Forget the Twitter: free ink and airtime are your MOST DANGEROUS WEAPONS

Most of you are trying the same thing.

Every writer, rock star and actor trying to break through is told to “Harness the powers of the internets.”

Start a blog. Get on Facebook, Twitter and six other things that haven’t been invented yet. The message is: jack into the Matrix, work it hard and the world will take notice of your inherent awesomeness.

I already poked Internet Fanboys in the eye by saying The Twitter, it is NOT for selling books.

Why pour 2.6 metric tons of salt into this fresh wound? Am I simply a bad, bad man, bent on destroying your dreams? No. I am a bad, bad man who hates people wasting their time. The series of tubes is actually quite useful. An amazing tool.

HOWEVER: 99.9 percent of people are doing it wrong. When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

Use the right tools for the right jobs

Now, some people took the wrong message from my post about the Twitter.

Bad Response No.1: “You’re wrong, because I don’t buy books from seeing authors on the Glowing Tube or when movies are made from their books or whatever. I only buy books based on word of mouth, specifically, from the mouth of my best friend, Suzie the Librarian.”

Bad Response No. 2: “Wow, that math stinks, and if we can’t break through without using Twitter and whatnot, then maybe we should give up our dreams of ever making it big, because I can’t afford millions of dollars to buy ads and publicity. I can barely afford this cardboard box and beef flavor Top Ramen, though on good months, I splurge for shrimp flavor.”

Wrong, wrong, wrong.

First off, Twitter isn’t a bad thing.

I adore Twitter. It’s a beautiful tool that’s meant for meeting people, talking smack and sharing information. It’s made for dialogue, and creative writer types are helpful. They like being nice to other creative writer types.

teh kittehs, they are friends

The kittehs, they are friends. Twitter is for making new friends, not selling things. REMEMBER THAT.

Twitter simply isn’t built for selling things.

That doesn’t mean you give up on your lifelong dream of writing, acting, singing or competitive square dancing.

Second, earned media is not only free, but it has more weight — more credibility — than paid advertising.

I will translate this into simple Man Speak: You can get on the radio, in the papers of news, on the Glowing Tube — and on blogs that review books or talk smack about movies / rock singers / square dancing — and IT DOESN’T COST YOU A DIME.

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Filed under 4 Writing Secrets Wednesday, 7 Media Strategy Saturday, Journalism, publicity and scandals, Old Media, which is still Big and Strong, The Twitter, the Book of Face and the Series of Tubes, Viral media math

The Twitter, it is NOT for selling books

Twitter isn’t built to sell books. Or anything else.

Yet if you belong to the Twitter, you see all sorts of authors pimping their books.

Some do it subtly, or randomly. Others do it faithfully, if not relentlessly.

And even if they mount a full Social Networking Offensive — a combined-forced attack with tweets on the ground, blog battleships at sea and Facebook fighter planes swooping down from above — even if they do all that, they will fail.

Attack of the Internet Fanboys

Oh, this is sacrilege. I know it.

Internet Fanboys believe that the Twitter, the Book of Face, blogs, the entire series of tubes — hey, that’s the future. Old Media is so wrinkled and, I don’t know, old. They say, “Social media once was the student, and now it is the master. If you only KNEW the power of the Dark Side…”

Except they’re wrong. No matter how much you want it to work, how hard you squeeze your eyes and reach for that Internet lightsaber, it doesn’t fly through the air and into your hand. Even when you pick it up and push the button, nothing happens.

Faith isn’t enough.

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Filed under 4 Writing Secrets Wednesday, 7 Media Strategy Saturday, Old Media, which is still Big and Strong, The Twitter, the Book of Face and the Series of Tubes, Viral media math

Vonnegut, Einstein and a Grand Unified Theory of Writing

Kurt Vonnegut was the Man.

Go back and read his books. DO IT NOW.

Once you’ve read his books, and fully appreciate his literary genius, you can watch this low-definition video with horrible audio that still rocks because it has KURT FREAKING VONNEGUT.

I would have paid monies to have him as my professor. Now that I think about it, I did pay monies to have professors. Hmm. Though my journalism profs were top-notch. Props to you all.

Now, it’s not so complicated, is it?

Hero in a hole.

Boy meets girl.

Girl with a problem.

Albert Einstein — and thousands of other people far, far smarter than you or I put together, even on our good days when our fingers spark magic and the coffee we drink would do better on an IQ test than Michele Bachmann — spent many years trying to come up with a unified theory of everything.

See, the whole E=MC2 was only part of the answer. That’s the equation for energy. He wanted to do an equation that also explained gravity and whatnot. IT IS COMPLICATED. We will not get into it.

Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein was a muffin of stud with epic hair. I salute him. Image via Wikipedia

But writing isn’t rocket science. Not even close.

Oh, people get all mystical and complicated, and come up with their own jargon and rules. Yet these self-appointed writing gurus all disagree, and they specialize so much that they know more and more about less and less until they know absolutely everything about nothing.

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