Why You Need a Book Publicist in Los Angeles

Why You Need a Book Publicist in Los Angeles

Los Angeles may be known as the epicenter of the film industry, but it has a long and storied history as a home for writers – often drawn here by big paychecks from movie studios. Joan Didion, Charles Bukowski, Dorothy Parker, William Faulkner, Truman Capote and Gore Vidal all lived here at one point or another. 

Do I really need a book publicist in Los Angeles?

If you are a writer in Los Angeles, you might be wondering how to promote your book. 

Every day in the U.S., thousands of books are published. Authors increasingly turn to self-publishing – as of 2020, 1.7 million new books were published in the U.S., and in the last five years, the number of self-published books has risen 264 percent. 

In such a competitive environment, your book needs an edge. A good publicist will know how to get your book noticed by effectively pitching to the right people. 

In addition to being competitive, the media environment for book coverage is increasingly limited. Though more books are being published, traditional media outlets like radio and print are shrinking. In this oversaturated environment, publicity can be a tool that can garner recognition for an author. 

Some publicists are employed by publishing houses while others work freelance. If your book is being published by a major publisher, they will handle publicity for you. But if you are an independent author being published by a small press, you may want to hire a publicist directly. Hiring a book publicist will free up your time to focus on your own creative endeavors, rather than trying to do the job of a publicist by pitching the media yourself.

For indie authors, experts say not to focus on book sales, but rather on building community through social media. Think of marketing as ongoing – it will last not just around the time the book is released, but rather for as long as you have a career. 

How To Promote Books In Los Angeles

How to Promote Books in Los Angeles

You might be wondering how to promote books in the Los Angeles area, or you might be interested in national coverage. 

If you are just starting out and don’t have much of a platform, you might look to regional marketing – for example, events or smaller tours in the region. If you’re looking for national coverage, you should hire a publicist who has the experience and access to national coverage and will work with you to get you the requisite media training.

Be aware that a publicist charged with generating just local publicity should charge less than one who can get you national exposure. No matter what kind of coverage you are looking for, make sure there is good communication between you and the publicist about what you want and what they are willing to do for you.

Also, keep in mind that many book publicists do not work with self-published authors. However, if your book is of high quality, there are many freelance publicists who might be willing to work with you. 

What Is a Book Publicist?

The job of a book publicist is to get the word out about your book. In order to do this, they must first find or be aware of the target audience for your book. Ideally, a publicist will start with a conversation with the author, establishing their goals, what they’re about, and who their target audience is. From there the publicist will develop strategies to reach this target audience.

Some duties of a book publicist can include: 

  • Submitting galleys and books for book reviews. 
  • Campaigning to be on book lists or nominated for book awards.
  • Pitching stories to journalists about the book or author.
  • Scheduling book signings and tours.

While there are many ways to self-promote on the internet, the most widely consumed internet content does in fact start with traditional media like radio, magazines, newspapers, and TV. Coverage in these types of outlets lends credibility. So the job of a publicist is to get you interviews, book reviews, or even op-ed pieces in publications. 

How to Get a Book Publicist in Los Angeles

You may be wondering if hiring a book publicist is the right move for you and your book. Ideally, someone hiring a book publicist will already have a social media platform and a website so that the publicist will have tools to use to connect with the target audience.  

There is a lot you can do on your own to grow your social media profile, so that when it is time to hire a book publicist you will have an understanding of your target audience, which the publicist can then use to market to them.

What’s more, building your platform can help you grow an audience, and having your own audience will make you more desirable in the eyes of big publishers!

How To Promote Books In Los Angeles

Top 5 Qualities of an Effective Publicist

  1. A network of contacts – A major part of a publicist’s job is creating and maintaining relationships with media industry professionals. The larger their network, the more access you will have.
  2. A flair for marketing – A good publicist will leverage the author’s social media platform to get them attention and thereby increase book sales.
  3. Professionalism – Your publicist will need to stay on top of scheduling meetings and interviews with various outlets, assembling press kits, campaigning for book awards, etc. Ideally, you want a publicist with the professionalism to accomplish things that you wouldn’t be able to do yourself.
  4. Expertise – An effective publicist has the know-how to devise and execute media strategies. Some publicists even help with advertising, cover design and book formatting. A good publicist can help you avoid marketing strategies that they know won’t work. Perhaps importantly, the publicist needs to be savvy enough to know when something isn’t working and needs retooling.
  5. Experience – A proven track record is the mark of a good publicist. When looking for a publicist, don’t be afraid to ask for references. Research other campaigns they’ve worked on. 

How to Find the Right Publicist for Your Book

As with literary agents, book publicists specialize in different genres. Some specialize in fiction while others may specialize in non-fiction. It is important to find a publicist who is a good fit for your book. Do some research on different publicists to compare the services they offer, their background and their expertise.

Next, write out a list of the outcomes you are expecting the publicist to achieve. Share this with your potential publicist when you ask for their proposal and fees. 

One important factor to consider is whether the publicist has knowledge of the audience you are trying to reach. 

It’s very important to find a book publicist you can trust. Beware of publicists who are more interested in promoting their business than your book. 

Finally, make sure your personality matches with theirs. The relationship between an author and a book publicist is collaborative, so you have to be compatible. 

The Lot Studios - A Creative-Media &Amp; Entertainment Campus
THE LOT STUDIOS – A CREATIVE-MEDIA & ENTERTAINMENT CAMPUS

The Best Book Publicist in Los Angeles

How you define “best” depends on your goals. In that same vein, the ROI for a book publicity campaign depends on your goals. Indie authors often focus less on book sales and more on gaining recognition as an author that will lead to a long-lasting career. Their idea of an ROI will be different from that of an author who is focused solely on book sales. 

That said, at Loaded Media, we guarantee placements in major magazines – a promise that is otherwise almost nonexistent in today’s shrinking print media landscape. What’s more, we can work with you to develop a brand strategy for your website, blog and social media platforms. We will also work with you to develop an extensive press kit so that we can pitch the media about you and your book. Loaded Media is a tech-savvy PR agency that can help you navigate an often confusing and always-changing digital marketplace.

Loaded Media is based in Los Angeles, one of the largest literary markets in the country. What’s more, Loaded Media has a proven track record of landing its clients in national publications.

How to Hire a Book Publicist

Often, authors want to hire a publicist after their book has already been released and flopped. It is better to have a plan in place in advance, and a good publicist has the ability to play 5D chess and think 50 steps ahead.

Another thing to consider is if you can afford a book publicist. A good book publicist will charge $3,000 to $5,000 per month and will need to work with you for at least three months. 

If you’re interested in hiring a publicist directly, the first step would be to go to their website and find their contact information and contact them via email or through a contact form. When it’s time to meet with a potential publicist, ask them for a detailed list of what they plan to do to promote your book. You should also find out what they need from you, and if they will provide media training.

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