Pleasantly Persistent PR Blog
The Secrets to Nonfiction Book Publicity
August 20, 2020
Nonfiction book sales have been on the rise in the last several years. This expanding market is great news for nonfiction writers who want to publicize their book. Learn how to make the most of nonfiction market trends with these nonfiction book publicity tips below.

Pinpoint Your Target Audience
One big benefit of nonfiction book promotion is that your book will have a clear audience. Audiences for fiction are usually less defined, but nonfiction books will have a specific, built-in audience based on the book's topic.

For example, a book I recently publicized, Go from Stressed to Strong, written by Laurie Watkins, focuses on how you can live better and with less stress through diet, exercise and other healthful habits. The audience for the book are people who are overwhelmed and could live life more fully by harnessing a variety of stress management tools. More specifically, this book is for professionals working in demanding environments who have prioritized their careers over their personal health, and are looking to improve their work-life balance.

When determining your book's audience, consider the book's general topic and related subtopics, and think about groups of people who would benefit from reading your book.

Find the In & Pitch to News Outlets
All nonfiction books, regardless of subject matter, will have something in them of interest to local or national news outlets. Your job is to identify what the angle is - or, what it is about your book that is compelling to a media outlet - and pitch to that outlet.

Learn more about creating marketing hooks and pitching to media outlets
The most apparent angles are those that are topical or trending. If you wrote a book about pandemics or public health in 2020, consider yourself lucky. Landing a TV spot would be relatively easy considering the substantial news coverage on these topics.

But a topical tie-in to your book doesn't require a number one trending story. Another book I promoted, Spies of the Deep, by W. Craig Reed, is about the Russian submarine Kursk disaster that occurred at the beginning of Putin's presidency. The author spent 10 years researching Putin and is an expert on the geopolitical ramifications of international submarine warfare. Tie-ins with trending news include how Putin responds to crisis and has amassed power.

If you're struggling to find an angle between your book and the news, take a look at the calendar. Consider how your book is connected to anniversaries, holidays and month-long observances like LGBTQ Pride Month. Unapologetically Favored, written by Courtney Kittrell, is about the author's coming-of-age journey as she confronts her sexuality while serving in the U.S. Navy during the "don't ask, don't tell" policy era. It is a good example of a title that could have been pitched during Pride Month.

Find Your Podcasts
Did you know that more than 50 percent of American adults listen to podcasts?
And the market is only growing as new podcasts regularly emerge geared towards niche audiences. Podcasts are novel, powerful publicity tools that should not be overlooked as part of your nonfiction book publicity. Do your research and find podcasts that cover topics that are related to your book - you are bound to find at least a few. One of my clients, John Graybill, author of Private Airlane Passenger Safety, was featured on numerous aviation podcasts, including Ready for Takeoff.

Besides broadcasting your message, being featured on a podcast has the added advantage of connecting with an audience that is active on social media. Podcast listeners are more likely than other audiences to engage on social media platforms. This means they can spread the word about your book, compounding your nonfiction book publicity.

You're An Expert
You've written a whole book on a particular topic, which makes you a subject expert. Own this.
News outlets are always eager to interview experts. They view subject experts as people who can add value to their coverage by providing high-level commentary and insight. When you are pitching yourself to media outlets, and when being interviewed, feel confident in your expertise and be prepared to showcase it. During a media interview about your book, you will likely spend more time speaking about related topics as the subject expert than directly discussing your book.
Finding a Nonfiction Hook in Fiction
If you are trying for fiction publicity, my advice is to think like a nonfiction writer.
Media outlets are more apt to interview nonfiction writers since they can discuss subjects besides their book. The media want guests who can directly contribute to a conversation about a topical or trending event and are experts in this area, so as a fiction writer, you'll need to work a little harder to determine what this is.

A fantasy author I worked with, Chad Trisef, author of The Oracle Series, loved to go to schools and talk to kids about reading and encouraging this as a life-long habit. The natural in there for media outlets was pitching Chad as a child literacy advocate who helped get kids off screens and gaming devices and into books.

Other times, a better approach is to focus on another professional endeavor, with the work of fiction riding on the coattails of the promotion. If you have a background that relates to your fiction book topic, your experience should be publicized first and foremost.
My last bit of advice is don't give up. A successful nonfiction book promotion campaign is never easy and requires a lot of hard work and tenacity. If you need help promoting your nonfiction, reach out to me today to see how I can help.
Feel free to contact me
Julia Brown
Book publicist
Phone: +1 619-888-7956
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