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ECPA Wire: Industry News

Publicists to Unite at Pub U, held Nov. 7-8 in Nashville

Wednesday, September 13, 2017  
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by Jenaye White, Publicist, B&H Publishing Group

Jenaye White

Harper Lee wrote in To Kill a Mockingbird, “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view.” As a book publicist, I spend my days juggling author expectations vs. media realities, crafting pitches, making sure galleys are sent on time, preparing authors for their interviews, and sending lots (and lots) of follow-up emails to media contacts.

 

The work that often gets pushed to the backburner is networking with media contacts and learning about new media or podcasts -- although those activities often produce the greatest return on investment.

There’s no better way to meet, network, and learn from media contacts than face-to-face, and at this year’s ECPA PubU, you’ll have that chance.

 

 

I’m excited about two sessions in particular that will help publicists carve out time for those two important functions: networking with media and learning about new media/podcasts.

 

NEWS EDITORS PANEL:  WHAT EVERY NEWS EDITOR OR PRODUCER NEEDS FROM A PUBLICIST/PUBLISHER
Panelists are Emily McFarlan Miller (National reporter, RNS), Richard Clark (Director of editorial development for CT Pastors), Holly Meyer (Religion reporter, The Tennessean), David Bennett (Editor, Home Life Magazine), and Bob Smietana (Veteran religion reporter and frequent contributor to national publications; Senior writer, Facts & Trends)


PODCASTS: WHAT IS FUN, WHAT SELLS, AND WHAT STINKS
Panelists are Richard Clark (Director of Editorial Development for CT Pastors and host of The Calling podcast), Barnabas Piper (Author and Co-host of 5 Leadership Questions podcast and The Happy Rant podcast), and Todd Adkins (Director, LifeWay Leadership, Co-host of 5 Leadership Questions podcast). One more podcaster may be added at a later time.

 

The “News Editors” panel will give attendees a unique chance to hear from and ask questions of media professionals representing a variety of outlets -- feature/magazine editors, religion beat reporters, and managing editors. We’ll hear their perspectives on book pitches, what kinds of stories gain the most traction, what topics they’d like to cover more, and how Christian publishers can be a better resource to them. This session will also be a time to speak with panelists and network with other publicists, share what we’ve learned this year, and strengthen ongoing relationships.

 

Podcasts have grown so rapidly in the last few years and have such devoted listeners (and book buyers) that they are now an integral part of most book launch campaigns. Over the past year, I’ve seen podcasts make a significant impact on book sales and launches, and perhaps are beginning to replace the typical “radio tours” most publishers have traditionally utilized.

 

The podcast session will feature a panel of top podcast hosts who will share their insights into the world of podcasting, what kinds of authors and books they cover, and how Christian publishers can use podcasts for maximum impact and book sales.

 

In addition to these two panels, there are a variety of other sessions offered in both the in the Marketing/Publicity and Reader Engagement tracks that would be helpful to publicists:

 

SHOUTING AT CULTURE with Gabe Lyons

 

LET'S PARTY!  HOW TO LEVERAGE EVENTS FOR EFFECTIVE READER ENGAGEMENT

 

DID YOU HEAR ABOUT HIS BOOK?  BUILDING EFFECTIVE STREET TEAMS with Anna LeBaron

 

INFLUENCER MARKETING:  IN GOD WE TRUST, EVERYONE ELSE HAS TO BRING DATA with Todd Adkins

 

5 ESSENTIAL STRATEGIES FOR PROMOTING BOOKS ONLINE 
with Andrew Tebbe

 

VIDEO CAMPAIGNS: BUILDING VALUE THROUGH
STORY-DRIVEN CREATIVE 
with David McKay

 

Whether you’re a publicist at a Christian publisher or an independent publicist who works with Christian publishers and authors, I urge you to consider attending ECPA PubU this year. As a fellow publicist, I believe it will be incredibly beneficial to you. I hope to see you in November, and I look forward to learning from and alongside you.  

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