So today I have for you all an interview with the lovely and super friendly Lauren Bennett; Publicity Manager at Random House Children’s Publisher’s! I’ve asked her some questions about the industry and blogs! Hope you enjoy all of the questions and answers!
Let’s start with some basics. What is your name and your position in publishing?
Lauren Bennett, Publicity Manager at RHCP
In your opinion, how much have bloggers changed the way books are publicised/marketed?
Bloggers have hugely changed the way books are publicised, they can be the difference between a book being successful or unsuccessful, their reviews, chatter on twitter / facebook / goodreads / youtube helps spread the buzz of a book and gets that valuable word of mouth publicity we are always trying to get! I think it especially has an impact on YA books as teens get their info about books online, rather than traditional media.
How different is the planning for a book tour online to an offline book tour?
Well there are the obvious differences like you don’t need to go anywhere for online tours so less travel booking and wondering how to get from A to B with only 10 mins to spare and trying to find somewhere for a sandwich on the way! Online tours are great as authors can do from home, they can reach the whole of the UK at once (and international) and people may read online pieces and discover new authors where they might not do that for a physical event. The only downside I guess is that the author cannot see the fans reactions – their emotions etc but now with things like google hangouts we are getting the best of both worlds!
Do you feel that the internet (and blogs in particular) have helped the industry?
Absolutely, anything that gives more coverage to children’s and YA books and gets more people talking is a huge positive. I’ve always said the UK bloggers helped launch Lauren Kate’s Fallen in the UK and I will be forever grateful!!
What has been your favourite blog experience?
I love the RHCP blogger brunches, it is so nice to have face to face time with bloggers and chat about what they have been reading and have a bit of a gossip – one of my favourites was when Laura Dockrill came to speak to bloggers – she whizzed in like a colourful whirlwind and all the bloggers were instantly in love! I also thought it was great fun working with the bloggers to create the fan trailer for Lauren Kate’s Teardrop, everyone was so up for it and enthusiastic, no questions, they just went with it and it was great fun!
Are there any authors that you feel have truly benefited from being highlighted on blogs?
As mentioned before definitely Lauren Kate – I do think it is great for debuts, bloggers aren’t so fixated on big names they are more led by great books so I love introducing new authors to bloggers as it feels like a real partnership.
Do you prefer online book tours or offline book tours?
I like both (I know that is a cop-out but you need balance!)
Do you think there will there ever be a day when offline book tours stop?
I hope not, I think its important for children to meet their literary heroes, its fun and inspirational and great to be outside interacting in the real world!
And finally, while we’re all incredibly grateful that you work with us, do you enjoy working with bloggers?
Love it. There is nothing like getting an excited email or tweet from a blogger who has just read and loved a book you recommended – it makes your day as a publicist and is so nice to share with an author!
Anything else you want to say about publishing and blogging?
Just a huge thanks to all the bloggers who support RHCP with reviews, online tours, brunches and events!
Thank you so much for all of those lovely answers Lauren! It was great hearing a few things from the publishers side for a change! And it was great to have you on the blog again! Bloggers, if you ever think your blog doesn’t help, think again!