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How To Get Celebrity Endorsements
by Penny C. Sansevieri
   







2 free books from eHarlequin.com!












 

One complimentary nod from a famous face can launch even the most obscure product. Advertising agencies may pay a high price to have a celebrity take a swig of their soft drink, or wear a pair of their running shoes.

The good news is, you can get endorsements for your book that probably won’t cost you a thing, except time, patience, and persistence. It’s a long road to get an endorsement, but once traveled, it can prove very profitable to the sale of your book. Now, your celebrity endorsement might not be from the hottest celebrity. It might a radio personality, a local celebrity, or an author. Who your chosen celebrities are will likely depend on your book. First off, you’re going to want to inquire of those celebs who have a vested interest in your topic – that will help to greatly increase your chances of getting a response.

So, let’s say that the target of your endorsement campaign is an actor. Start by contacting the Screen Actor’s Guild to get their current agent/publicist information. You can call (323) 549-6737 for Los Angeles-based celebs. Otherwise, head on over to
http://www.sag.org for the New York office.

If you’re trying to reach a famous author, head on over to the author’s web site to determine who published the book--and then call or write to the publisher (you can often approach less well-known authors directly). Sometimes the publisher will filter these requests, sometimes the author has a separate agent who will handle this. If you’re pursuing someone with obscure contact information, send a request to the Author’s Guild. If the author is a member, the Guild will have current contact information. You can send an email to
staff@authorsregistry.org with your list of names.

Once you’ve gotten contact information for all of your endorsement hopefuls, you’ll want to get your package ready to send to them. Some people will want to see a synopsis, outline or press release. Whatever they ask for, make sure it’s ready to send off to them right away. You’ll want to wait a few days to confirm their receipt of this information. At that time, you might get a response “We’ll forward this on” or “Sorry, Mr. Such and Such doesn’t endorse this type of material.”

If all goes well, you’ll be asked to send your packet. An endorsement package should include nearly the same information as your review kit: press release, book information, synopsis, book. Also include sample endorsements, much like the mock reviews I talk about in my book, “Get Published!” The celeb can just circle one of the endorsements and fax or mail it back to you (don't forget your prepaid FedEx envelope or SASE). But unlike a sample review, once a celebrity “claims” an endorsement, remove it from the sample sheet.

Your cover letter should be professional and appreciative. Remember, they don’t have to do this! It should also indicate that you will forward a copy of the final product once your book is printed. Once that package is sent, then it’s time to wait...and wait...and wait--and sometimes resend the package if they can’t seem to locate it when yo follow up. Though this process is long and arduous at times, it’s worth every letter, every call and every book mailed out.

As powerful a tool as a celebrity endorsement can be, this is too often the most overlooked marketing aspect of an author’s campaign. In fact, most authors I work with never give any thought to celebrity endorsements, even those who have spent years in the business. For example, I recently worked with an author whose book, What I Learned on the Way Down, was all about his life as an Emmy award-winning writer, sky diver and personal assistant to Jerry Lewis. The last part stopped me in my tracks. When I asked my client about getting an endorsement from Mr. Lewis, he looked at me as though I were speaking Greek. The thought had never occurred to him!

Even if you don't know any celebrities directly, you might even know someone who knows someone who knows someone, narrowing that six degrees of separation--or you might develop contacts online. If you don’t, do it the old fashioned way. In either case, getting even one famous face to acknowledge your work is often enough to get even the most apprehensive buyer to give your book a second look. And in the end, isn’t that what it’s all about?

Copyright Penny C. Sansevieri. All Rights Reserved.



Penny Sansevieri, is the author of The Cliffhanger, which was published in June of 2000. After a strategic marketing campaign it quickly climbed the ranks at Amazon.com to the #1 best selling book in San Diego . Her most recent book: No More Rejections. Get Published Today! was released in July of 2002 to rave reviews. Penny is a literary agent and also works with authors to help them market and promote their books. To learn more about her books or her promotional services, you can visit her web site at
www.booksbypen.com.




 













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