How to Get Famous People to Promote Your Book for You
From two-liner word plays to printed winks of approval, and now shout outs seen by a million fan base – endorsements vine with technology. Before the boom of social media, getting in touch with famous faces is just about an onion being stripped from gate keepers, middlemen, PR people, and their egotistical layer at its core.
But thanks to networking, followers, and the new means for self-pat on the back that is our online façade, you can now boost ties with influencers, experts, and your heroes to give that complimentary nod readers are roused to see.
You ask them and they vouch for your book, easy right? Well, as good as it sounds, there’s still extra effective styles and techniques you can learn from these pros below:
If you don’t ask, they can’t say ‘yes.’ They also can’t turn you down. It never hurts. - R. Lacroix
If you’re writing a book, chances are you already have a social media presence. Whether this is Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest or even just a blog (like myself), you are NETWORKED. This? THIS is your platform.
BUT. The key? YOU HAVE TO BUILD A RELATIONSHIP. Network. Use social media. Make ties and – when people feel comfortable and friendly – ASK. What do you have to lose? Nothing. Nothing at all. GO ASK.
The first thing you have to remember when you’re trying to get a celebrity to endorse your book is that they’d be doing you a huge favor. - C. George
Contact them in the way they wish to be contacted (mail, email or fax); follow their guidelines (or their agents’ guidelines) to the letter.
When you’re putting together your list of desired endorsements, make it long to begin with – 20 or so names.
If your target is an actor, you’ll want to start by contacting The Screen Actor’s Guild to get current agent/publicist information.
If you’re trying to reach an author, your best bet will be to search for the author’s own website, determine who the publisher and/or agent is and call them. Or try sending your request to The Author’s Guild (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Once you’ve gotten contact information for everyone on your list, get your package ready to send. Some people will want to see a synopsis, outline or press release.
If you happen to be at an event where the celeb is (perhaps a conference or other speaking venue) try and approach them with your book. Make sure your contact information is not loose but pasted or written inside the book because contact points will get separated.
Make sure you’re the last person in line waiting to see the celeb so you don’t get ushered out too quickly to “keep the line moving.” I’ve actually done this a few times to get celeb endorsements for clients and it absolutely works.
I explained that I was writing the book and would be honored to include their names in the proposal as potential endorsers. I explained why I thought they were a good match for the book. All agreed. - D. Jacob
Another kind of endorsement is the foreword. This is a larger commitment, where someone writes an essay inside the book, instead of a sentence or paragraph. A respected name, mentioned in the proposal, can impress agents and editors.
Think about it this way: Who is an admired authority on the broad subject of your book, in the mind of the target reader? Not in your mind. If you’re lucky and you’re a good networker, you might already know these people, or you have a connection. If not, it’s just a matter of asking them.
It’s free marketing to their intended audience, if you chose correctly. So if you’re worried that you have nothing to offer these big names, think again. Your book can be a billboard for their own publicity.
The first this to remember about partnerships is The Law of Reciprocity. - W. Whitlock
Approach every relationship as an opportunity to add value, solve a problem or fulfill the desire of the other person and you’ll find that it’s much easier to get what you want.
You really can get anything you want by helping other people get what they want.
Most authors tell me that someone approaching them that has read their books, subscribed to their newsletters or purchase a product will get a warm reception. A heartfelt testimonial is even better.
Book agents write and sell proposals for a living, and have dozens of proposals crossing their desk every week. They see what works and what doesn’t.
The lesson I learned here was that the Internet is as small as it is big. You never know who’s listening, and relationships can be built from the simplest communications. Google names.
If you decide to partner with another writer (as a co-author or even a ghost writer), the obvious choice is to work with someone who will make the project better, and who brings assets to the table that you do not.
Just take two things that most people know about, each of which relates to your idea in someway, and sandwich them together in a way that immediately creates context. For us, it was “The 4-Hour Body meets The Hero With a Thousand Faces with a dash ofFight Club.”
If you want to understand how to get a 7-figure advance in just a few lines, try this: understand how to explain your uniqueness; develop a compelling pitch around a single break-out concept; build and exhibit your massive network and platform; painstakingly detail your previous successes; present all of these things with an Alpha veneer of knowing that your stuff is awesome.
Book buys and book tours. – If you are an entrepreneur and an expert who has written a book whose topic ties in with their corporate marketing goals, they will potentially buy thousands of your books as giveaways to a specific audience they want to reach. - B. Burchard
Promotions, contests, and sweepstakes. – Find a like-minded corporate sponsor to supply the prizes. Remember they love the advertising and they love that you are doing the bulk of the work setting up the contest or promotion and they have the connections you need to make it work.
Don’t forsake the crème de la crème but don’t only rely on them to fuel your book’s promotion – everyone’s fighting to go to prom with the prom king and prom queen. - C. Abraham
You can do it on the cheap using just your time and talent or you can subscribe to a dedicated blogger outreach platform like GroupHigh with a little bit of treasure
Or, you can open your wallet and either collaborate with an expert or hire a publicist to do the outreach on your behalf (I’m always happy to help)
Never forget that every single profile, website, blog, and email address represents a person, a soul, an ego, and a heart. Never lose sight of the fact that you’re reaching out to people and not just reviews, ratings, blog posts, or earned media mentions.
It’s not enough to say I have a brilliant idea and then lock it in your laptop. And it’s not enough to just talk about it, tweet about it, blog about it. Talk is cheap. An authentic, unique voice is a doer. - M. Ecko
Treat handlers (assistant, publicist, manager, associate) with respect. Not only is this the right thing to do, but this could be the hand of the king—and they’ll later whisper into the king’s ear.
Let the content and the high concept speak for you. Don’t send some weird headshot. There is a time and place for fanboy-dom, and pre-pitch isn’t it.
You will always keep pitching, and you will always have to deal with rejections. This doesn’t mean you should give up; it means you’re human and you have a pulse. –
Don’t scour for the “private” or “personal” email because you think they don’t check the main one listed on their contact form. It makes you seem desperate–and weird. Find their public email and make your pitch. If you do it well, it will work. If it doesn’t, the problem is your pitch…not where you’re pitching it.
Have a product? Ask them if they would like it. Give it to them. Ask for nothing in return. - D. Garland
@ reply your favorite author when they ask a question or ask for a recommendation on Twitter.
Promote their book or latest offering on your blog or via Twitter.
Write an article about them or include them in a list like this: 35 Unique Entrepreneurs That Are Changing The Business World. Shoot them an email/tweet/or some other way of communication and let them know they are in the article.
One thing I love to do is help others out on their “big day.” Their big day might be: When their new product comes out, such as a book. When they have a BIG announcement about something.
Yes, the Internet is an amazing freaking medium, but still nothing beats face-to-face. Looking to meet someone? See where they will be speaking or hanging out. And go there.
It might be weeks later. It might be months later. Heck, it took me over a year to interview Seth Godin. This takes time. But, at some point after giving, giving, giving, you can ask for something small. There isn’t some kind of manipulative jackass formula to this. It is just the reality of it.
One of the first things we do in most cases is to follow every member on our list by putting them in Twitter lists and Google+ Circles. - J. Jantsch
We also subscribe to their blog feed using Feedly, as well as their newsletters and other forms of content. In addition to our targeted Influencers, we also build a list of potential guest blog post opportunities.
There are a variety of tools you can employ to find such folks. Currently, I’m quite fond ofBuzzSumo’s influence ranking tool but I also employ Topsy and Followerwonk to help validate and expand my list of potential partners. (Inkybee and BlogDash offer powerful paid plans as well.)
Do you have a unique strategy? Let us know in the comments section below.