I spent a few days in Boston last week for Harvard Medical School’s CME leadership and publishing course. When I wasn’t teaching workshops, I spent most of my time meeting course participants and helping them clarify their book concepts and publishing strategies.
However, I managed to squeeze in a few of the panels and presentations where I learned how much even a publishing insider can learn in this rapidly changing arena. Here are a few social media tips that served as helpful reminders—as well as a new website tip I picked up from Rusty Shelton:
One of Rusty Shelton’s social media tips: Google your name and see what comes up. “Your brand is what Google says it is.” [Click to Tweet This] Rusty asks, “Are you leaving that first impression for others to make?” Imagine a New York Times columnist searching for your name. “Would they find you? Would they be able to contact you on deadline?”
Of course, the advanced version of this is not just being searchable by name but by the keywords a journalist may search under. Rusty shared that four of the five most recent instances of his authors being on national TV were from a producer calling after finding the author in a keyword search on Google.
Rusty’s talk made me rethink the idea of having a contact form, which I used to prevent spam. Rusty’s point is that you want to make it as easy as possible for journalists considering you as a news source. A contact form adds an extra step. A clearly visible e-mail and phone number work best. We certainly don’t want to turn away the media!