Saturday, September 01, 2007

WORKSHOP: How to Get Booked on Radio Talk Shows

WORKSHOP: How to Get Booked on Radio Talk Shows - Host: Cheryl Robinson

Radio Talk Show Exposure Sells Books! It is the most powerful PR vehicle to jump-start a media campaign and can separate you from thousands of new authors and their books by getting you noticed by the buying public.

In this workshop you will learn:

How to kick-off a coast-to-coast or international publicity campaign
How to impress a producer
How to create a "buzz" for your book
How to create a 15-second sound bite about your book
How to get a talk show interview
How to reach America's urban markets without leaving home
How to create fans and dedicated readers
How much "free publicity" would cost if you had to pay for it
What the difference is between a best-seller and a bargin-bin dweller
What the Benefits are of Using Talk Radio
How two Best-Selling Authors sold 9 million books in three years

Take Action and Separate Yourself from tens of thousands of new Authors by signing up for this workshop!


There are literally tens of thousands of new books released every year. As more and more titles enter into the market, each author needs to take immediate action if he or she wants to be separated from the majority and get noticed by the buying public. When it comes to book publicity, it’s a fiercely competitive world out there.

What is the Most Powerful Vehicle to Use for PR

RADIO TALK SHOW INTERVIEWS—One interview can jump-start a media campaign for your book. And it can get the author more business and build a personal fortune by selling more books.

The Facts About Radio

According to a recent survey by Statistical Research Inc., 96% of the US population listens to the radio at least once a week and 75% listens EVERY DAY … more than any other media. So, Talk Show Interview time is worth even more than ad time.

Why? Because people pay more attention to the talk shows than the commercials.

Understanding Radio Talk Shows

What is The Biggest Mistake Most Authors Make?

They do a twenty-city tour and think they are finished promoting their book.
What is the difference between a best-seller and a bargain-bin dweller?

Media Publicity.
Is Your Book a Best-kept Secret?

What Are the Benefits for an Author Using Radio Talk Shows?

You can tap into the unlimited availability of radio publicity.
You will have a captive audience of thousands…even millions…of listeners.
You can be promotional of your book.
You can do the interviews on the phone from anywhere for free—the radio station calls you.
You can make your book stand out from the other books.
It is easier to get booked on radio than any other venue.
More sold books, since Talk Shows are rebroadcast many times!

Why Should You Use Radio Talk Show Interviews to Promote Your Book?

You have more control over the content of the interview than television or print.
You can mention your title, your website, your contact information and your buying information several times. (Repetition, Repetition and more Repetition.)
You can promote to millions of people with one interview!
You can sell books—long after the original show is off air.
You can get both your name and book title in front of the public.
Your name and book title will eventually stick in the listener’s head.

Why Book Radio Talk Shows?

Talk Radio offers tremendous exposure, both with traditional and Internet radio stations.
You can kick-off a coast-to-coast publicity campaign on traditional radio.
You can kick-off an international publicity campaign on Internet radio.
Your book promotion should include interviews on Talk Shows to build a huge demand for your books.
You get to talk at length about your book and expertise as an author.
You don’t have to be a professional speaker.
Remember: It is the talk show host’s job to make you sound good and to keep the show moving. Statistics show that 65% of all talk show guests are authors and shows need guests!

What Can Booking a Talk Show Interview Do for You?

Create a “buzz” for your book.
Create fans and dedicated readers.
Get you in touch with individual readers and book clubs.
Help you reach urban markets without leaving home.
How to Get Booked on a Talk Show

Talk Show Producers want to attract listeners and boost ratings. They are always looking for that “special” guest.

Always send a complimentary copy of your book. It may cost you now, but it will pay in the long run. If they already have your book, they will call you first.
Impress the producer with a pitch letter and a media kit and/or a press release. It is the key that opens doors to talk show interviews. (Hard copy or Electronic)
Call or email the producer of the talk show yourself and pitch your book directly. Your publicist or agent is busy with other clients/books.

When talking to the Host, have a smile on your face. They can hear it in your voice. Be enthusiastic. Your conversation with the Host is a mini-interview.
Impress the producer with a clever hook. You know the special slant that your book has to offer.

Really impress the producer with a one-page teaser, which includes book title, related issues, and 5 suggested questions to get the host interested in your book. You have done most of the work for the Talk Show Host. If they have an opening or a cancellation, they will call you.

Ask about themes and tell the Host how you will fit in.
If you are not a perfect fit for this Talk Show, don’t panic. Talk Show Hosts talk to each other and make suggestions to their colleagues.
Remember the name of the Host and use it throughout the interview. You will be asked to return.

Create a 15-second sound bite about your book and have it memorized. This is especially good if you only get a 10- or 15-minute talk show spot. For Example: The life of a Negro League baseball player, segregation and a missed opportunity to play Major League baseball is combined with Negro League trivia, facts, and a list of Negro League teams and surviving players—a wealth of baseball information.
TIP #1/ Stay Current

Follow the news. What are people talking about? What is the media discussing? What is the buzz? Why is this important? Because, in case you haven’t noticed, talk radio is all about current events. Current events in politics, sports, weather, health, and social issues. So, how does your book tie-in to current events? When you know what’s current, you can package your message to fit the news…making you an attractive guest for a talk show. Also, monitor the talk radio arena. Take time to listen to some local and/or national talk shows, hear what they’re talking about and get a feel for the public audience.

TIP #2/ Tie-Ins To The News

As you follow the hottest stories in the news, think of ways you can tie the message of your book into them. Look for controversy or big names, big money or even relationship issues… These are always tantalizing topics for many talk show hosts (and their listeners). Developing a good angle for your book that’s newsworthy means you might get on the air with your novel.

TIP #3/ Pitch Your Topic, Not Your Book or Yourself

As you develop your message, keep in mind that radio hosts are interested in what you can do for their listeners, not what they can do for you. They want an interview, not an infomercial for your book. So, when pitching to hosts and producers, put emphasis on the issue you want to talk about on the air, rather than on your book. The fact that you’ve authored a book gives you “credibility,” so be wise when pitching your cause. There’s no need to worry, once on the air, you’ll be given plenty of opportunity to plug your book during the interview. But a word of caution, don’t overdue it.

“I had one well-known author come on my talk show and he used it as an hour-long infomercial. He was a good author, but his last book was also an infomercial, not a sequel to his first best seller. You guessed it, I will never have him on my show ever again. And I told all of my colleagues about his arrogance.”

TIP #4/ The Right Press Release Formula

Nothing is more important than the press release or pitch letter. It’s your key to opening the media’s door. The quality of your press release has everything to do with your success in getting booked as a Talk Show guest. You want to make sure your headline is enticing. It must grab the Host’s attention, first. The text of your release should elaborate on the subject matter and what the “on-air” conversation will be about. It is always good to include a couple of intriguing or provocative quotes. Also include a short, but impressive bio, and 5 to 10 questions you would like the host to ask you. They may or may not use your questions, but you gave them incite into your book.

There’s plenty more to learn, but the information in this workshop can help jump-start you into the world of talk radio. If you want to know more, ask me about Media Training Classes.

“This is how to get booked on Radio Talk Shows. This is how successful PR agents do it, this is how successful authors do it, and this is how I do it. I am looking forward to your workshop questions.”

Cheryl Robinson


Zookeeper Cat said...

Question: You mention several items to use to gain interest: press release, teaser page, complimentary book copy. Is it a good idea to bundle them together, or to send out press releases to targeted stations slightly ahead of the media package? I.e. when I do press work for my local Arts Council, I usually use email.

I have to say, I like the idea of a TalkShoe Tour even better than a blog tour.


Cathi-Lyn Dyck

Treasures Antique Store said...

This could not have come at a better time -- I'm just starting to look for the right station to go to for a panel with my local RWA chapter! Fantastic information. Thanks! Regan

Rose said...

Lashunda you have really provided an absolutely wonderful conference here. Very informative. Thanks so much for taking the time to implement and plan this.

Publicity and marketing is essential, but how much should someone pay for this publicity. Seriously when I look at what several publicists offered some authors I am affliated with, it was too much for what they were saying they would do with no gaurantees. It was actually things the author could do themselves. At what point should an author have a publicist? Self-publishing or when they are with a traditional publisher? Now don't get me wrong, I know having publicity is extremely important, but paying an armload of money when there are no gaurentees is a bit much. At least gaurantee me that everyone will know my name- maybe they won't buy the book- but I should get something out of a high price publicist. Plus how can you be sure you selected the right person who really is working to promote you?
You have provided some great information here Cheryl on getting the radio interviews. Very useful.

LaShaunda said...

Cheryl thank you so much for your informative workshop. It was a pleasure talking with you. I'm sure it won't be the last time. If there's anything I can do to help you promote, you know where to find me.

Have a great weekend.

Koko Brown said...

Thanks for the invaluable information! Couldn't have come at a better time since my book is released this month and I'm knee deep in promoting!

Koko Brown

Anonymous said...

Yes, It is a good idea to send a package to the Talk Show Host. Please make contact by email or phone call to find out what their preferences are. They or their staff will be glad to answer any questions. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Authors, Please remember to ask for an interview. So, many people have called about interviews on the Just About Books Talk Show and never asked me for an interview. Also, Keep in mind that Hosts often have last minute cancellations and they may need a quick replacement. Leave your phone number, as well as your email address.

Anonymous said...

Authors, Please keep in mind that you can book an interview for when your book will be released. Examople, Sheila Goss contacted me in July or August and booked a show in October for the release of her new book. Don't be afraid to ask for what you want. Talk Show Interviews can help make a best seller. Our show is heard around the world. One book club in London asked for contact information for an author in Virginia. They had him at their next book club meeting. Also, many Canadian book clubs are looking for authors and will seek you out after a lively interview on Just About Books Talk Show.
Cheryl (Sorry that I have to use Anonymous.)

Anonymous said...

Any authors, self-published or mainstream, I would love to have you on the Talk Show. Please call me at 301-643-2077 or 1-800-687-1019 or email me

Also, we have book giveaways for our listeners. What a wonderful way to get your book distributed around the world. We pay postage!
Good Luck to all of you and Thanks so much for attending this workshop.
Cheryl Robinson

Anonymous said...

How Much would free publicity cost, if you had to pay for it?
-$300 per minute on a mediocre station
-$1,000 per minute on a big station
-$30,000 per minute on the Howard Stern Show
How Much would an Hour cost?
-$1,800 for an hour on a mediocre station
-$1.8 million for an hour on the Howard Stern Show

"Free Publicity" adds up when you are paying for it.

Cheryl Robinson

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