Frequently Asked Questions
These are some of the most common questions we get from authors and prospective clients. Please have a look and let us know if you have any other questions!
Do you represent self-published or indie published books?
Yes! We were among the first publicity firms in the United States to represent both traditionally published and self/indie published books. The industry has transformed and continues to; we are proud to be pioneers in publicity.
Does my book have to be edited?
Yes! Our firm only represents professionally edited books. If you would like to learn more about our professional editing division, click here. These qualified book editors will enable you to transform your manuscript into a professional product.
I have a professionally edited book, but I don’t have a cover. Can JKS help?
Yes! Our seasoned team can produce a cover that represents your book! Click here for examples.
How early do I need to contact a publicity firm when I know my book will be published?
If you are traditionally published, it’s best to contact a publicity firm as soon as you know your publishing date. Together we can determine when it makes sense to start working together – often about four months prior to the release date. If you are self-published, contact us when you’ve finished your manuscript and are planning your release.
I’ve worked with other publicity firms and I feel like I’m in the dark. How do I know what JKS Communications is doing for me on a regular basis?
Because of our team approach, you are integrated into our process immediately. You will approve your press materials (news release, etc.) prior to it being sent out to media and booksellers, and you will have input on your media target list. You will have 24/7 access to our online communication tool that allows you to see what is happening in real time on your campaign and to track progress online whenever you choose.
What happens when my publicity agreement has come to an end?
Many of our clients choose to do an author branding campaign, which allows them to continue to have publicity opportunities and keep them in the public eye between their book releases. If your campaign comes to a conclusion, but we get a request from a media outlet, we will contact you and help facilitate your connecting with that journalist. Book publishing is such a tough business for authors as it is, we do not want you to feel “orphaned” – we like to think of our team and our authors as part of a family. Many of our authors get to know each other and support each other as well.
What if my book is already released?
This is one of the most challenging aspects of a publicity campaign. Traditional media especially takes notice of launch dates and prefers to be reached months prior to the book’s public release. There are rare times when a book has already been released, but the topic is so relevant to current events, that it can be reintroduced to media. Campaigns for books that are already released take more of our team’s time, and therefore may cost more. We would like to discuss the strategic promotional opportunities still available for branding you as an author and raising exposure of your book.
How involved do I have to be in my campaign?
Participating in your own campaign will amplify everything JKS does for your career. We are a team, and we will set you up to succeed by handling the details. You will set your book up to shine by investing yourself in the process.
The Type of Author Who Will Have the Most Successful Campaigns Is:
• Willing to be involved and engaged
• Active on social media
• A team player
• Realistic about their expectations
• Friendly with fellow authors in the industry
• Has an appreciation for booksellers
• Willing to walk over hot coals to meet one fan, versus only doing something with an audience of 1,000 people
• Patient, understanding that publicity is a marathon, not a sprint.
• Available and willing to strategize / do media interviews
How long does a publicity campaign typically run?
Ideally, we like to start a campaign four months before a book launches, and continue it for two months through the launch. This is important because media and event organizers like to be on the front end before a book is available to the public. With newsrooms shrinking everyday and book coverage being the first things that get cut, book publicity is already an uphill battle. Once your book is out—your old news! Second, we must give reviewers and event organizers enough lead time to get the book in their queue, read it, and schedule coverage and events.
Can you give me an example timeline of a typical PR campaign?
Month 1: Team becomes familiar with book and goals of campaign. We strategize, build press kit, create media target list, develop physical book tour plan, send review copies/submissions to industry publications and long-lead (magazines and review publication with longer press cycles) outlets.
Month 2: Initial pitching on media list / event target plan, especially for long lead. Certain online promotions and giveaways.
Month 3-4: Continuing to pitch and coordinate media and events.
Month 5: LAUNCH. Staying on top of launch promotions making sure everything runs smoothly.
Month 6: Finalizing things that are still in the works, following up on outstanding coverage, coordinating other events that are still running, submitting for literary awards.
Can I have a New York Times review or appear on Oprah and The Today Show?
Any publicist who promises you this is not being honest. In fact, there are truly no guarantees in publicity. We are proud to have had authors in O Magazine, on The TODAY Show, in Southern Living, in The New York Times, in the Washington Post, and many other national, regional, and local publications. It’s very, very challenging to secure these spots as literally hundreds of publicists make requests every day and on some days these outlets get over 1,000 requests! Our team will make every effort to personally pitch and tenaciously follow up with a targeted media list unique to your book and to get the best media attention possible.
Someone promised to review my book, but they didn’t follow through. Can you make that happen?
While our publicists have excellent professional relationships with reviewers, bloggers, and other media reporters, we have no true control over what and when they publish. Media schedules are volatile and subject to change. Our team works regularly with industry reviewers, book bloggers, and columnists across the globe.
How many books am I going to sell?
Realistically there is absolutely no way to predict that because there are so many variables. The distribution of a book, the reaction by media and tastemakers of the book, and how well an author performs in interviews and in other aspects of the campaign affect it. We only agree to do marketing and publicity for books that we believe have a reasonable chance of garnering positive attention.
Will I become a New York Times bestseller?
We, like you, would love to see your book on the New York Times bestseller list. We are proud to have represented New York Times, Washington Post, USA today, Amazon, and other national, regional and local bestsellers. However, In 99.9% of cases, hitting the New York Times is not a realistic expectation.
I’ve heard author horror stories about no one showing up to their events. Will that happen to me?
We know how important getting an author into a bookstore is. However, we’re not going to send authors unless they have a network of friends and family because no amount of media exposure is going to get someone off their couch and to your event. Our team specializes in creating and promoting events with built-in audiences at unique off-site venues or with bookstores if you would be paired with a local author or group panel, or simply going in for a meet-and-greet with booksellers where you sign stock copies of your book.
How much is publicity?
Our campaigns range in cost from $1,500 for basic online promotions and can go up to $25,000 or more for full service campaigns and cross-country book tours. Please see the Services tab on our website and request a proposal for more details. We always strive to be fiscally responsible and work hard to make sure you get the most bang for your buck.