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Welcome to our latest fortnightly eBulletin, posted here on Tuesday, 15 April 2014. In this issue:

 

New Email Marketing Census 2014, plus another week to share your open/click stats

Adestra and Econsultancy have just published their Email Marketing Industry Census 2014, free to clients and subscribers respectively. It's about strategy and trends, not metrics, but definitely worth browsing if you have free access to it.

Here are a few quick points which jumped out at me:

Read more about the Email Marketing Industry Census 2014 at Econsultancy.

Thank you if who've already shared your typical open and click rates with us for our mini subscriber benchmark survey. We've decided to extend the deadline until Wednesday 23 April and would love more submissions! It should only take a minute or two, confidentiality is guaranteed, and we'll publish the results in the eBulletin on 29 April.

Email rachel@marketability.info now if you'd been meaning to do this, or read more about our survey first.

 

Do readers trust quotes any more?

I was recently asked this question by an editor during the marketing session on a Publishing Training Centre course. It comes up regularly: are readers now too cynical about quotes or endorsements being 'paid for' or doctored to be impressed by them when used in copy?

My response was to ask the group how they responded to quotes as consumers of copy. And the answer was that they weighed them up, assessing how well they could be trusted based on content (eg: too ecstatic = suspicious, or comments qualified with reasons = convincing). They also judged quotes based on what they knew of the sources. Were these 'people like them' whose preferences and opinions were likely to be similar? I recalled a bad Trip Advisor review of a boutique hotel in the Sri Lankan jungle, which complained that there were 'creepy crawlies in the private outdoor bathroom'. This and the rest of the post (in similar vein) convinced me that its author was an idiot and helped me choose the hotel. (Very special, email me if you want details!)

In summary, we've all become more sophisticated about how we use quotes, but they are still fantastically effective. To make them work for you, always credit them (if you can't use a name, 'Head of English at St Leonard's School in Stafford', or 'Amazon customer' is fine and they don't go out of date when individuals move on), and choose positive comments qualified with reasons. Readers look for quotes from 'people like them' ('social proof'), so choose accordingly.

Our Copywriting Workshop runs in Oxford in June and in London in October - or at your office on a date to suit you.

 

Should you refuse to send review copies to national newspapers?

At least one big academic publisher that I know of is doing just this, making clear to (most) authors that the nationals will not be approached. If marketing is all about ROI (which it is), then arguably only titles likely to be bought as a result of column inches should be pitched. And there's a big gap between readers enjoying a Sunday morning browse of a diverting feature and going online to buy a book - for most the feature will simply be enough.

There are benefits other than sales of course, but keeping an egotistical author happy isn't one of them.

Our Practical Publicity Workshop is realistic about where potential lies and how to exploit it. Even niche academic presses have titles appropriate to national and broadcast media, and ALL titles benefit from coverage in appropriate media. Why not join Corinne Julius and me in London on 29 April?

PS: In 1991 Corinne Julius asked Katharine Hepburn (yes, that one) 'Why did you get fired?'... Listen to this interview in the BBC archives.

 

On The Marketability Grapevine on Facebook

• What an agile Jaffa Cake looks like (see this week's Tip below!)
• Read something that hit the spot in this eBulletin? Click through and like the item or add a comment on Facebook
• Watch the Wall for postings of new jobs, or feel free to add to them.

Visit The Marketability Grapevine.

 

Tip of the Week - how to do agile marketing, with two examples

Heard the phrase 'agile marketing' but not sure what it means? The good news is you're almost certainly doing it already. It's spotting a mainstream news story on which to hitch a message about a title/product of yours. Great for Twitter (excellent retweet potential), Facebook and emailings. Just make sure there's a point to the connection, that you add value for your readers.

Two examples:

  1. This time last year Wiley used the horse-meat scandal to flag up its journal articles on food science through social media used by the research community. Perfect!
  2. And when the new 10-sided £1 coin was announced last month, a 10-sided Jaffa Cake appeared on Twitter with a line that it was (also) to help combat counterfeit copies. I love both the well-judged humour and the underlying message that Jaffa Cakes are desirable enough to lead to illegal copying.

For ideas on how to incorporate agile marketing and much more into your plans, check out our Impressive Marketing Plans on a Small Budget workshop (runs on 13 May).

 

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Rachel Maund
Marketability - extra marketing resources and training just when you need them
Tel: +44 (0)20 8977 2741
Email: rachel@marketability.info

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