View Full Version : Is is worthwhile to hire a book publicist?

12-02-2004, 09:39 AM
Do you think it is worth the money to hire a professional to do a good portion of your marketing for you, especially if said professional has an established track record, good media contacts, an interest in your publishing niche, etc.?

Thanks for any feedback.

12-02-2004, 05:12 PM

What kind of a book is it? Market territory is a consideration. I've never used one myself and can't comment on their effectiveness. I did my own promo, along with the publisher, of course. Another consideration is the cost. How expensive are these people? In a galaxy far far away I heard some bad news about some publicists.


12-03-2004, 01:21 AM
Thanks so much for your reply. My book will be published by a tiny publisher. They have helped me in a lot of ways, including creating a nice web site for me, but their promotional budget is very limited, and I know very little about marketing/promoting. Also, I am very shy, so the idea of hiring someone to help me with that side of things is very appealing. I have someone in mind, someone who handles work in my niche (spirituality/holistic health/new age) and appears to have a proven track record. She has agreed to take a look at my book, put together a proposal outlining exactly what she would do for me, and, of course, what it would cost. If I don't like her proposal, and/or if the marketing services she provides are simply too expensive, I would obviously say no. On the other hand, if I feel she has contacts that I simply don't have and that could be of genuine use to me, I think I would consider hiring her. I look at it as an investment (and all that word implies). In other words, I could hire someone and the book could still bomb, or I could try to promote it (badly) on my own, given my general shyness/lack of media contacts, etc. and really, really bomb. Or, with her help, maybe my book could do moderately well/find its niche among readers with an interest in my book's specific subject. The reason this particular publicist is on my radar screen is that she has exclusively promoted books like mine, and some of them have done quite well.

Thanks again for your feedback!


12-03-2004, 01:21 AM
It is a excellant idea to consult with a expert in the field of PR. If this person is the experianced than they should be listed with a society so you can check them out. It depends on the genre your non-fiction is in.. has this person dealt within that genre before.. example... if your book is biographical, say in the music industry.. does that pr person have the RIGHT contacts within the music industry.. you can also contract with them for specialty fields as I have mentioned... leave me a message and I can give you more ideas..

12-03-2004, 04:40 AM
In that case it sounds like a good idea to go with this publicist. Specialty markets are difficult to reach unless you know exactly where to go. Publicists are like agents, they wine and dine with the right contacts, that in itself saves time and frustration


12-21-2004, 01:00 AM
I think it can be worthwhile to work with a book publicist *if* they are indeed a book publicist that specializes in nonfiction and not just PR person who thinks that they have the ability to do so. Being a book publicist is a specialized gig and you want them to have good contacts. A regular PR person is unlikely to have that.

Tom Nixon
The SmallPress Blog (http://www.smallpress.typepad.com)
Read this week's interview with book marketing guru John Kremer!
(His book: 1001 Ways to Market Your Book)

12-23-2004, 11:33 PM
thank you all for your very helpful feedback!


12-31-2004, 11:32 PM
Geena, in all my experience as a freelance writer and author, I would say that a publicist would be an excellent thing to have, being as you have the funds for it. That's the only thing stopping me at this point, lol. Publicists know the ins and outs of the media industry and will really be advantageous in giving you just the right kind of PR for your book. I've always been one to do things myself and have turned down well-known publicists for that reason. However, down the road, I found out that there's just so much I can do and it's frustrating for me sometimes. I find it interesting that this publicist handles spiritual type of books...right up my alley. Heck, send her my way...lol. One thing, though, see what kind of a track record they have. Put the publicist in Google for instance and see her success record. I turned down an agent one time for this very reason. She didn't even have a website. Nowadays, it's a must. I saw it as unprofessional and went looking for an agent that had a well organized website and success stories from authors she had handled. Bottom line...do your homework before you commit. :D

www.dorothythompson.net (http://www.dorothythompson.net)