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All the Light, All the Love

Photo by Stokpic

I intended to write about new marketing communications strategies I’ve seen in the book world these days, but given the current pandemic and it’s impact on our industry, I’m going to pivot slightly and go back to a topic I’ve written about before: community.

I write now having just come from picking up books from my children’s public school, a school of 1,300 in the borough of Queens, NY.  The parents lingered a little longer to see a friend, to stand in the sunlight, to just be around a place that gives our children encouragement, knowledge, friendship.

In the PR world, (hopefully) most of us are doing what we’ve been trained to do—(I’ll use the word again) pivot, monitor, heed with caution, give back, educate and jump when the moment is right. Author tours have been cancelled as have appearances, signings, speaking engagements, and festivals. Bookstores have closed their doors to browsing. Media has shifted focus. Social media messaging plans are being retooled and new messaging crafted with considerable care.

With all this in mind, I’ve been monitoring people’s actions—not so much their use of hand sanitizer, toilet paper hoarding and social distancing, but 1) how are they changing gears, giving back, and jumping in to mobilize, educate and protect.

Here’s a round up of all the light and love I’ve seen:

Author interviews

Journal writing prompts

Cool writerly kid stuff

Virtual book clubbing and tours

General good book juju

So cool, don’t miss it:

Giveaways galore

Before I end this post, I must go back to what I intended with this article and that’s to discuss new marketing communications strategies in the book world.

Text Message Marketing. Philippe Boussiou, Ph.D., co-founder of Palo-Alto based Blue Dot Partners and author of the recently released Aligning the Dots: The New Paradigm to Grow Any Business [30]. He used text message marketing to announce his new book. This text included a link to Amazon. Later that day when I went to buy my copy, I noticed that the book had hit number one in a category.

Marketing Your Book on Instagram. I mentioned Andrew Zimmerman’s [31] Instagram account above. Andy’s a client with big, beautiful ideas that have left me curious and excited—everything I want in my workday. When he said that he wanted to build out his book Journey’s world on Instagram using the photos from his various trips to Glastonbury, I was lured right in. Here’s some insight into Andy’s why and how.

  1. Your debut novel journey tackles a pretty heavy topic in today’s day and age – work/life balance, the drive to be successful, and the implications of career success on your personal life. What’s one thing you’d like a reader to take away from all of this? It can sound trite, but it is about self-love which opens oneself up to loving others and embracing what life offers us. Just opening your eyes, a little bit, you can see a world in color versus black and white.
  2. Your book takes place in New York City and Glastonbury, most people know it for the musical festival, but it’s also a very spiritual and mystical place. What do you want people to know about Glastonbury?  Glastonbury has always been in myth and in history a place where things begin, whether the Druids on the Tor doing ceremonies millennia ago, to the Isle of Avalon to one of the first and then largest Abbies in Europe, it has always touch humanity with its heart.  It is called the heart chakra of the world.  I find it is a safe place to explore one’s beliefs and willingness to take chances.  To believe in everything, and the feel the release that belief enables.  Yes, in a town full of witches and druids and fairies and every type of belief system in the world, Glastonbury can be overwhelming.  But it also gives you breathing space to connect with yourself and you are surrounded by sacred space, centuries of mystical energy and healers of every kind.  It is what I tried to convey in my storytelling.
  3. To have readers get a more intimate feel of Glastonbury and your book, you worked with Rodrigo Corral Studio [32] to create an Instagram campaign based on your photos from there. How did you come up with this idea as someone who doesn’t personally spend a lot of time on the platform? I wanted the reader to feel the hauntingly beautiful spaces of Glastonbury. I’m the most amateur of photographers; in fact, I hate the way everyone takes pictures of things as opposed to experiencing them. But over a ten-year period, I did take some photographs in Glastonbury—nothing special. Rodrigo was inspired by the story and Glastonbury and asked to see some of my photographs. He suggested taking advantage of the Instagram visual medium and did an amazing mashup of the visual look and feel of the Journey cover and my somewhat pedestrian photographs.  The result was an amazing walking tour of Glastonbury with excerpts from my novel. Rodrigo picked most of the excerpts and curated this amazing Instagram experience.  It is probably appropriate that the President of frog, one of the leading design firms in the world, use Instagram to share his story using one of the world’s leading designers.  Thank you, Rodrigo!

I will FINALLY end this post.

Please, if you could, share the love and light you’ve seen or are offering in the comments below. And, please, stay safe.

About Ann Marie Nieves [33]

Ann-Marie Nieves [34] is the founder of Get Red PR, and an award-winning communicator with experience across a broad range of industries in both the business-to-consumer and business-to-business sectors. She has experience within all communications platforms including public relations, advertising, marketing, copywriting, website development, community relations, and social media.