Public relatons: Tips for books and films

Hello there!

Today is going to be a much different post. I’m going to be talking about how public relations is utilized in the film and book industries.

As I’ve said before, I’m a public relations major, so this kind of thing is pretty interesting to me.  I hope you like it!

Film

I’ve done a bit of research on how the film industry promotes movies using PR and there are a few key tips that come up over and over: (Disclaimer: a lot of the following pertained to independent films. However, I see the same tactics use on big budget picParanormal activity movie covertures as well.)

1. Use social media

Willis Wee wrote in his blog, Promoting a Movie Made Easy with Social Media, “Movie is social. Social is movie.” What he means is going to see a movie, and every step leading up to it, is a very social process made easier by social media. I agree. Think about it… before you even go to the theater you watch the trailer, read reviews, talk to your friends about what they think of it and then plan to go see it. Now, every step I just listed can be done online through social media sites like Youtube, Facebook and Twitter. Whoever had the idea   to use social media to promote Paranormal Activitythrough social media was a genius. I heard more about the film on Facebook than I did through any traditional media source (TV, newspaper etc…).

Anthony Mora adds in his blog, Promoting Your Movie via the Media, that another good use of Facebook is to run ads on Facebook and Google.

2. Make a press release

A press release is the information about your film you send to the press (radio, television, newspapers etc…) when you want to start promotion. It’s free and the press can help promote your movie to millions of people.

Guerilla-filmmaker.com says this about press releases:

The key to the press acting on your press release is to have a hook. In the case of local press this might just be the fact that you’re local people making a film and for the local paper that’s newsworthy enough. However, for the national press to pick up on your film you will need a major hook.

I think this is a great tip. Many press releases are looked over if they are deemed “un-newsworthy.” That’s why having something attention-grabbing in yours.

3. Know your target audience/market

This is true in any PR campaign. You MUST know who you are trying to promote your film to. If you’re promoting a teen romance with vampires and werewolves, you probably don’t want to advertise your film in AARP’s magazine. According to Haute PR, “The most essential aspect of public relations is understanding your target audience in a better way. To understand your target audience better, you should know who your target audiences are. ” You should know your audience’s attitudes, opinions and  interests and they should correlate with what your film is offering.

Books

Just as with the film tips, these tactics were given over and over again.

1. Virtual book tours

Pump Up Your Book Promotion PR says that one of the best promotion tools they use is a virtual tour. Online book tours provide an opportunity for an author to get a lot more exposure than they might using only traditional media outlets. Tours last about a month and during that time, the author will be interviewed, write guest posts and have their book spotlighted or reviewed on blogs. I think this is a really cool idea and a great way to utilize the blogosphere. The other cool thing about this is that as long as the blogger keeps that post up about your book, you will have that exposure. It’s not a one-and-done thing.

2. Media coverageJ.K. Rowling signing books on tour

This is similar to the virtual book tour but focuses on traditional media outlets such as television, radio and print. Pam Perry, Book Publicity Coach calls media publicity “the icing on the cake.” It’s probably the biggest component of a successful book promotion. Assetebooks.com does say, however, that you don’t need to use all types of media to promote your book. Focus on the outlets that your audience will actually see. Which brings me to the final point…

3. Know your target audience/market

Once again, knowing your audience is a HUGE part of book promotion. It’s more than just knowing the market’s interest and opinions according to Pam Perry, Book Publicity Coach. You also need to know the author’s reputation in that market. “The author must create a market for himself by really addressing the needs of that market, knowing that market and communicating the right message to that market.”

 

Well, that’s all for today! I hope you guys liked the change. I won’t be positing for a couple weeks but my next post is going to be awesome! I will be posting about the Hunger Games film!

Jen

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The Hunger Games Working to Stop World Hunger

Hi everyone!
Today’s post is going to be a little different. As I mentioned in my “about me” page, I’m a public relations major so I’m going to throw a little PR into my blog.

The Hunger Games is the first in a trilogy of novels written by Suzanne Collins and is now being turned into a highly-anticipated film.

Amazon.com gives this description of the book:The Hunger Games Book Cover

“Katniss is a 16-year-old girl living with her mother and younger sister in the poorest district of Panem, the remains of what used be the United States. Long ago the districts waged war on the Capitol and were defeated. As part of the surrender terms, each district agreed to send one boy and one girl to appear in an annual televised event called, “The Hunger Games.” The terrain, rules, and level of audience participation may change but one thing is constant: kill or be killed. When Kat’s sister is chosen by lottery, Kat steps up to go in her place. “

Let me start off by saying I am in love with the series. I read the first two books during my winter break because a friend recommended them to me and I would tell anyone to go pick up a copy. I plan to read the final book over spring break since I haven’t had time with school. The film is to be released on March 23 and you can bet I’ll be first in line for the midnight showing. If you want to see for yourself, check out the film’s trailer.

That being said, today I wanted to talk about The Hunger Games teaming up with World Food Programme and Feeding America to help end world hunger. If you follow The Hunger Games film’s Facebook page, you may very well have seen them posting videos accompanied by this message:

The Hunger Games is teaming up with World Food Programme and Feeding America and launching a new website to raise awareness about hunger around the world. You can help by making a donation and becoming an active part of the solution to help solve world hunger!

I think this is a great cause and with all of the buzz surrounding the film and books this is bound to get the cause more attention. It’s also pretty smart on the PR side. The film is mainly being advertised to those who have already read the books and to people who enjoy books/films such as Harry Potter and Twilight.

According to PRNewswire, “The Hunger Games partnership will engage fans of the book and movie and enable them to make a difference through a website, wfp.org/hungergames.  On the website users can watch the public service announcement featuring the stars of the film.  They can participate in a Hunger Quiz to learn more about hunger. Supporters can also make a donation to actively become a part of the solution and help solve world hunger.” I went on the site and it does a really nice job of combining the message of stopping world hunger with the film’s promotion.

So far, I have seen the film’s collaboration on Facebook, official Hunger Games websites as well as Hunger Games fansites. The Wold Food Programme and Feeding America have also been promoting the collaboration. All-in-all, along with helping a great cause, this has also opened up marketing of the film to completely different audiences.

I say, round of applause all around.
Jenna