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Marketability eBulletin

Welcome to our latest fortnightly eBulletin, posted here on 16 October 2018. In this issue:

Cambridge wins the prize for best conference freebie from an ELT publisher

Give-aways at conferences work best when they’re something attendees genuinely value and when they’re appropriate to the publisher’s brand, and this is a brilliant example. Cambridge University Press offered delegates at IATEFL (a huge English language teaching conference) a ‘Cambridge yourself’ photo opportunity.

Joe Tearle from Cambridge explains: “We realised that many people who attend international events like IATEFL and TESOL were unable to actually visit Cambridge, so it was our attempt to truly bring Cambridge to them. We shot video content in Cambridge of things like punting on the Cam, cyclists outside King’s College and the Corpus clock to create Cambridge away from Cambridge. Using AR and artificial green screen technology you can place the stand visitor in Cambridge and even give them their own souvenir of their trip with a photograph.”

I love this. There’s even a Cambridge Yourself video so you can see it for yourself. I especially love the delegate who really gets stuck into virtual punting! 

At this time of year as we plan our 2019 marketing strategy most of the focus will be on campaigns for specific titles where we hope to achieve sales and measure ROI. But we should remember too to plan for some brand and profile-raising activity, fun for us to work on as well as for our potential customers to engage with.

Keen to add some more creative elements to your marketing? Our Impressive Marketing Plans on a Small Budget workshop is the perfect forum for new ideas.


The Scholarly Kitchen looks at how university librarians select books

The University of Houston library announcing it was moving to patron-driven acquisition of books prompted Bob Nardini to write the post that appeared on The Scholarly Kitchen last week. Bob is VP of Library Services at ProQuest Books. The article ‘A Long Tale: Why Book Selection is Always Up for Debate’ is thought-provoking reading for anyone in academic publishing.

Read the post on The Scholarly Kitchen

Our Academic Marketing Workshop is the place to be for more like this.


Were the Man Booker Prize judges right to criticise the editing process?

Do you find yourself noticing ‘sloppy’ errors in books or even in publishers’ emails? If you’re of a certain age you may find yourself shaking your head and sighing sadly at the demise of that old chestnut ‘attention to detail’ that most job adverts used to require any applicant to bring to the post.

Last month the Man Booker Prize judges criticised poor editing in some of the shortlisted titles, but went one step further to conclude that editorial skills were no longer valued by publishers as they once were.

The Bookseller last week brought together the views of a number of agents and trade publishers, raising concerns that the editor’s traditional expertise is today under-valued and should be better supported. We are pulled in so many directions with new formats, channels, workflows and competitors that it’s easy to lose sight of what publishers have always done best, which is to turn good manuscripts into excellent books.

I definitely don’t agree with all the points made (eg I applaud appointing people with a marketing background into an editorial role, but then I would), but I have a lot of sympathy with issues raised, and am all for empowering editors (and marketers) to bring their expertise confidently to the table to result in better books.

Read the article in The Bookseller

If this article gets people at your company thinking about doing more training, perhaps we could help? We’re publishers through and through and can deliver in-company tailored courses on most topics. Here’s an overview of courses offered to get you started, but email us or use the Contact Us tab at the top of this page if you’ve got issues of your own you’d like covering in a tailored course.


On The Marketability Grapevine on Facebook

  • How can it be October already? But it is, and our 2019 mini desk calendar is on its way.
  • Read something that hit the spot in this eBulletin? Click through and like the item or add a comment on Facebook
  • Watch the wall for postings of new jobs, or feel free to add to them.

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Tip of the week: “creativity is the residue of time wasted”

How often do you feel frustrated that writing a piece of copy is just taking too long? The quote above is credited to Albert Einstein. I try to remember it when I’m trying, and failing, to speed up when copywriting. Sure, we don’t have any time to spare, but writing copy is a legitimate way of spending it, and we certainly shouldn’t beat ourselves up if it’s taking time. (But breaking off for a cup of tea can really help too.)

Our Copywriting Workshops always discuss how we ‘find time’ to write copy.




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