In the guest chair today is publicist guru Dana Kaye! Dana is the owner of Kaye Publicity, Inc. and author of Your Book, Your Brand: The Step-By-Step Guide to Launching Your Book and Boosting Your Sales. Known for her innovative ideas and knowledge of current trends, she frequently speaks on the topics of social media, branding, and publishing trends, and teaches online courses at KayePublicity.teachable.com.
It’s a real treat having her here to teach us debut authors the best ways to reach our audiences!
YOUR BOOK, YOUR BRAND is in stores now but if you retweet/share this post, you can enter to win a copy!
What’s your secret or not-so-secret superpower?
Many people call me the “Peddler of Pipe Dreams.” I have the ability to take any passion or dream a person has and show them how to make it come true. One of my assistants quit after talking to me about her passion for cooking and her dream of being a caterer, and I of course told her how she could easily build her business and make that dream come true. I met a woman at a BEA party who worked for a publisher, and we talked for a bit about going freelance and how I wouldn’t trade being self-employed for anything. She emailed me Monday to say she put in her notice. My belief in following your bliss is contagious. So, if you’ve always wanted to run a marathon, become an actor, or open a bakery, give me a call and I’ll show you the way.
Share one quirk you have that most people don’t know about.
I always stop at lemonade stands.
What is your advice for aspiring writers?
My advice is two-fold. First, there’s no substitution for sitting down in the chair and typing. Being on social media and going to conferences isn’t going to get you published; writing is going to get you published.
Second, the easy path is seldom the right one. I see too many authors get discouraged after a handful of rejections, or jump at the first offer they receive because they’re so excited to get an agent or a publishing deal. It’s important to be persistent and scrutinize any offer that comes your way. Don’t take the easy way out, rarely does it pay off.
What are the hardest and easiest things about your job?
For me, the easiest part of my job is strategizing. I love brainstorming, coming up with unique ways to market a book, and creating a plan to execute the campaign. Finding creative solutions to problems or reinventing the way things have always been done is the best aspect of my job.
There are many aspects of my job that are challenging, but I think the hardest part of my job is when we have an amazing book and a dynamic, talented author, and for whatever reason, the campaign just doesn’t work. Sometimes, for whatever reason, the media doesn’t bite, or they do and the reviews are subpar, or we get great reviews but B&N doesn’t place a big order or the independent bookstores don’t embrace the book. There are no guarantees in book PR and sometimes, despite our efforts, we just don’t get the coverage we were hoping for. Authors put their careers in our hands, and I don’t take that responsibility lightly. Over the years, we’ve launched dozens of bestsellers and award winners. But those one or two campaigns that didn’t pan out still stick with me.
What’s your next big thing?
I’m launching an online course based on the book, which is opening October 1st. I love online courses and think they’re a great way to learn new skills. The Your Book, Your Brand course expands on the ideas addressed in the book and provides a more detailed walk through of the book PR process. I’m also working on my next book, which is slated for fall of 2017 and covers content marketing.
About YOUR BOOK, YOUR BRAND:
The publishing industry is changing rapidly. From the rise of ebooks to the impact of online retail sales through companies like Amazon to the wide acceptance of self-publishing as a natural path — countless authors are writing books and then wondering what to do with them. If they decide to bring their book to market themselves, how do they ensure they will reach audiences without a marketing or publicity department and without the budgets and outreach that publishers have? If a house has acquired the rights and promises to publish, how does that writer supplement the work of those publicity managers and develop a direct relationship with everyone from the media to potential fans?
Kaye walks her readers through all of their options, taking the anxiety out of the pitching process and teaching authors how to be their own best promoters. Sharp, intuitive, and user-friendly, Dana Kaye’s guide is a must-have for anyone looking to get their manuscript into the hands of legions of readers.
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