Public Relations 101: Why are bloggers important for PR outreach?

bloggers and blogging

If there’s one thing I know for sure, it’s that there are a lot of bloggers. Google the term “book bloggers” and you’ll ping a million results. Google “book review bloggers” and you’ll ping a million more search results. Researching and sifting through blogs and their contact information is a time consuming process, but they are an important part of a PR campaign.

Why are bloggers so necessary to publicists as part of their outreach? More importantly, why are they so necessary for an an author looking to establish their brand?

They have their own fan base. Each blog has a built-in audience that comes with it, whether it is five people or five thousand. If you’re looking to have your chick lit novel reviewed, you’ll want to check out some chick lit reviewers—their fans may be your future fans, too.

They may review indie or self published authors. As an indie author, it’s difficult to get yourself reviewed in newspapers like the New York Times. Book review bloggers can give you the support you need, especially if they decide to favorably review your novel. Always respect a blog’s review policy—many clearly state that they do not review independently published titles. You will find bloggers that are open to reviewing indie authors, but you must ensure that the book is professionally edited before deciding to contact a reviewer—you don’t want to find a scathing review of your novel’s numerous spelling and grammatical errors.

They provide you with an online presence. A social media presence is one thing, but a presence on the rest of the web is just as important. Because blogging equals SEO, tagging, categories, and all that great online marketing jargon, reviews of your book online will make you a more searchable term—and people Googling your name will see that you and your book exist.

They have their own networks. More than ever, bloggers are an important tool for publishers. This summer, Book Expo America even had a networking conference for bloggers with several seminars related to the profession. Attending a blogger networking event in your area could lead to a relationship with someone who could have interest in your future career as a writer!

They’re a supportive medium. A blogger who has their own book review site is going to be someone who supports books. Why wouldn’t you want to be friendly with a crowd that loves reading just as much as you do?

Are you an author who utilizes bloggers and blog tours, and do you find those parts of your campaign successful? Tweet us your insight at @MCKINNEYPR!

Language is important: Don’t call me “stupid”!

2016 Presidential Election
Image via

As a PR person I am trained to manipulate the English language to express what I need  to, at any given moment.  As a kid I was pushed by parents who spoke foreign languages and insisted on proper verb agreement and other basic grammatical sentence structures. Since I spend so much time glued to the words I hear, it’s very depressing to find nearly every newscaster and public speaker having trouble with “there is” and “there are”.  For all of you out there who know what I mean, thank you!  For everyone else, “there is” is to be used when speaking of a single item; “there are” is for more than one.  There is a storm brewing.  There are a lot of storms in the Midwest at this time of year.  Slurring the words together in a slack form of “there’s” is not acceptable and does not excuse anyone from knowing that “is” relates to one thing.

It has been particularly interesting to watch the Presidential races of the past decade.  First Obama’s team put together a brilliant campaign aimed at those people who are heard less in this country.  Many of them are on the internet, and between using social media well, and papering low-income neighborhoods, Obama was able to win the election…twice.

2016 is shaping up to be a different animal altogether.  This is the age of referring to the words of co-candidates as “stupid” and telling your constituents to “sit down and shut up”.  If I thought our problems rested in the way we put together sentences, I was so wrong.  We seem to have fallen into a schoolyard, junior-high world where sounding like you just came out of the local pub on the corner and you are yelling at a guy who ran the stop sign, is the way to express yourself.

Who cares if your suit costs $5000? If you comb your hair or even take a shower?  Gee whiz, how debasing it is to watch potential world leaders practically pull out “nah, nah, nah, nah, nah, naaahhhh” (again, schoolyard).

And even funnier is to hear them actually put each other down.  A newscaster recently pointed out that “sit down and shut up” didn’t think  “stupid” has the proper “temperament” for the presidency.  Meanwhile another candidate from the other party decided to go all out and label a domestic terrorist a religious zealot commonly found in occupied territories in the Middle East.

Have these public figures spent too much time on Instagram and Snapchat?  Or have they made too many appearances on late night television? I’m not sure what’s happening, but it is sad to watch “stupid”, “sit down and shut up” and “religious zealot” standing at their podiums trying to tell us that they are going to take the country in a direction that will provide for the common welfare and keep us safe.  I mean, really, it isn’t proper for us to be pointing and laughing behind our hands when our national leaders are trying to be serious.


Links Roundup: Week of 6/8

Happy Friday, and a beautiful one at that! The excitement and buzz of Book Expo finally started to die down this week, and now it’s time to move on to other book and pr related topics! So here’s our Friday Links Roundup for you, and we wish you a sunny weekend!

RIP Christopher Lee [People]

Growing your audience on LinkedIN by repurposing content [Copyblogger]

A case study of a successful book launch [ALLi]

53 of the best lines in literature. Is yours here? [Buzzfeed]

Quiz: How humble are you? [92Y]

Can reading make you happier? [New Yorker]

Assembling a good team can help a lot in self-publishing [PW]

More ideas on repurposing content [PR Daily]

A finished copy of EL James’ “Grey” was stolen [Bookseller]

How much should you spend on a marketing budget as a writer? [Funds for Writers]



Publicizing a book? What to expect & when

What happens next? — A question I am asked all the time when it comes to a publicity campaign for a book, especially from new authors and clients. It’s time to lay down an outline of the calendar so you are armed with enough information that you can move on to other things on your list.

Infographic-Publicity timeline