Marketing and Publicity
When I first ventured into the world of publishing, I didn't expect to land in marketing and publicity. Once I found myself there, I realized that I really enjoy the work. I'm always learning something new, because in marketing, you rarely do the same thing twice. The tasks might be similar, but something is always changing because no two projects are exactly alike; each one requires fresh thinking.
Below are a few samples of my marketing-related work. In addition to the work shown here, I also have experience with other facets of the marketing and publicity process that aren't easily demonstrated in a single document. I'm great at marketing and publicity research, including everything from finding blogs or media outlets for the purpose of making pitches, to looking for event opportunities. I know my way around social media platforms (including Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, Pinterest, and Goodreads), and have learned how to develop a voice appropriate for each. I've worked on digital and print advertising campaigns. I also have a lot of event planning experience, including planning a public publishing-related lecture series, and various readings and author events.
Space at the Table Marketing
Space at the Table: Conversations Between an Evangelical Theologian and His Gay Son was the first title released by new publisher Zeal Books. For this book, we used traditional book marketing tactics—things like publicity outreach to online and print media, digital advertisements, giveaways, and direct mail and email campaigns—as well as a few less traditional strategies. We ran a Kickstarter campaign, both to raise money to cover our first print run (effectively using the crowdfunding platform as a way to take pre-orders), and to engage the target audience in a way that gave them a stake in the success of the book. (Kickstarter campaigns are an all-or-nothing game, so if backers want the product they pledged for, they have a vested interest in sharing the project so that it reaches its goal.) Our project was successfully funded and raised over $31,000 in a matter of weeks. You can check out the project's Kickstarter page, including all of our updates, here.
After the project was successfully funded, I wanted to find a way to keep these early adopters engaged, knowing that they already had a stake in the book. I created a webpage on Zeal's site for the 600 people who backed our campaign, and shared it with them through a letter I included when we sent out their rewards. This website had some freebies, including a discussion guide, and a list of ways they could help us out, including sharing about the book on social media, writing reviews, or telling a friend about the book. You can see that website here using the password "morespace." I also included a pre-stamped postcard with each book we sent out so that they could jot a note down and mail it to a friend.
Space at the Table also received some fantastic media, including a feature article, excerpt, and follow-up article that I placed in the Oregonian:
- Feature: "What an evangelical theologian and his gay son can teach us all about respect and reconciliation"
- "Space at the Table calls for respect between evangelicals and gays: Book excerpt"
- Follow-up article: "Can conservative churches genuinely welcome and serve LGBT people?"
I assembled this sales kit for Sean Davis's memoir, The Wax Bullet War. The kit was sent to our sales reps at Ingram Publisher Services and contained four key pieces:
- Sample chapters (not included here)
- A tip sheet
- An Ooligan Press info sheet (a standard document used at the press)
- The Wax Bullet War marketing plan
These documents were packaged in a folder, which I designed to resemble a military personnel file. You can click the image to the left to view the entire package, or click the links listed above to see individual documents.
George Horace Lorimer's Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to His Son was first published in 1901 as a serial in The Saturday Evening Post. In 1902, the letters were collected into a single volume that went on to become something of a bestseller.
The task here was to take this once-popular book and decide what would need to be done to make it succeed today, considering the way that the content and editorial needs of the book align with the contemporary market. This project shows how market awareness and marketing strategy can help inform the acquisition and design processes for a title.
Transmedia Marketing Plan
"Transmedia is storytelling across multiple platforms of media, with each element making distinctive contributions to a viewer, user, or player’s understanding of the story world. By using different media formats, it attempts to create entry-points through which consumers can become immersed in a storytelling world." —Convergence Culture by Henry Jenkins
This is a transmedia marketing plan for Ooligan Press’s YA title The Ninth Day. Ooligan is a small, nonprofit trade press with a very small marketing budget, so I focused on free or low-cost options that would utilize social media to create and distribute creative extensions and additions to the fictional world of the book. This marketing plan is meant to supplement (rather than replace) the book’s traditional marketing plan, which focuses on things like reviews, blurbs, giveaways, promotional collateral, and events and readings.
Other Marketing Samples
A pitch to bloggers (written while interning at HarperCollins).