Marketing “Crazy” Like a Fox: A Prize Winner’s Method

August 2002
by Harry Lynn

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When the Harbor Press book, Yes, Your Teen Is Crazy! – Loving Your Kid Without Losing Your Mind (by Michael J. Bradley, Ed.D.), was recognized for marketing excellence at this year’s Benjamin Franklin Awards ceremony, there was special reason for us to celebrate. That’s because our company operates on the premise that book publishing is, above all, an exercise in packaging and marketing. Without diminishing the importance of the publisher’s role in conceptualizing and shaping a book editorially, at Harbor Press, marketing considerations influence how book projects are chosen, shaped, packaged, and sold.



Author Michael Bradley met all the marketing prerequisites: he was a talented writer; he was credentialed; and he had the skills needed for handling media interviews effectively. The challenge was to match him with the right subject, with promotability being a prime consideration. After the author expressed interest in new research about the development of the teen brain, we saw the potential for a very strong news hook. With already intense media interest in teenagers, we reasoned that a book explaining how the teenage brain works could be a publicity bonanza.

Predictably, the brain research story turned up in cover stories in Newsweek and U.S. News & World Report, and it got big play in all the major daily newspapers. That helped us get lots of TV, radio, and press exposure, includi…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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