Thursday, May 14, 2009

guest blogger: Stacey Cochran, author of *Claws*


Thanks so much, Elisa, for the opportunity to guest blog at your place about my new novel CLAWS. Not only are you a tremendously talented writer, but you are tremendously generous and kind as well. Thank you.

So what is CLAWS?

CLAWS is a thriller set in Arizona with a wildlife biologist as the protagonist. Dr. Angie Rippard is drawn into a police investigation when two teens are found dead early one morning on a golf course. She suspects they were killed by a large mountain lion.

If you’re a fan of romance, CLAWS has that too. There are a couple of steamy scenes in the early part of the novel, and ultimately a major part of the story involves Rippard’s romantic triangle between her boyfriend and one of her top grad students. Put these folks in the middle of Arizona’s two-million-acre Tonto National Forest and throw in an endangered mountain lion, and you’ve got a pretty good sense of what my novel is.

I’m currently in the midst of a 45-day blog tour. For those who’ve never heard of such a thing, a blog tour is essentially a planned online tour where a writer visits blogs (just as I’m doing right now) in some sort of official capacity to help promote his/her novel.

In contrast to an actual roadtrip book tour, I can confidently say this is less expensive and less time consuming. And I’m currently writing this up looking rather un-showered and sucking down some freshly-brewed coffee at my writing desk at home.

Now I have no idea whether this will result in a single book sold, but a big part of the marketing strategy for writers like myself and Elisa is to gain exposure any way you can. And hope that your books find a receptive audience.

So what is the topic for today’s guest blog post? I would like to hear y’all discuss the most memorable marketing campaigns of your life.

Immediately, I’m thinking of the “I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke” campaign of the early 80s. That jingle has stayed with me for nearly three decades now. That’s effective marketing. Also, the Budweiser Frogs from the mid-90s (whatever happened to those guys any ways?). In terms of book marketing, I’ve never seen anything like Harry Potter and Rowling’s books have definitely changed the world.

I remember being in an airport and seeing a bookstore that had a Potter display with rip-off calendar dates counting down to the launch of one of the books. It occurred to me that there were thousands of similar displays all around the world, and everyone seemed united in their anticipation of the release of the book. Phenomenal.

So how you? What are a couple of the most memorable marketing campaigns from any business that comes to mind? What really sticks with you? Which ad campaigns worked?


Stacey Cochran said...

Thanks so much, Elisa!

I'd like to buy the world some Coke...Wait a minute, that doesn't sound right.

Sarah said...

my all time favorite add is one that i tore out of a magazine, cut off the add portion (some speaker company) and slapped on my dorm room wall. it was an image in rolling stone of water drops making a large music note with a caption that read "ever been drenched in sound?". fantastic. (my runner up would be all the absolut adds - very clever. what can i say? i'm a sucker for visual design.)

my question for you, stacey, is could you do a "reading" during your tour? having read amazon's few pages i'd love to get a sneak peak of a favorite scene.

thanks and good luck with your blog tour!

Stacey Cochran said...

Hey Sarah,

Your ads sounds quenching! I love the Absolut ads; they're very clever.

I'd be happy to do a reading. Have you got a blog that could host me doing a reading? I could add you to my tour dates!

What do you think?

Sarah said...

thanks, stacey. the closest thing to a blog i have is livejournal (i only have a blog account here to keep tabs on others), and it's a pretty small reader base. however, i'd be happy to host you.

it's up to you. if you do want to send anything to me to post, elisa has my email address.

Elisa said...

That's a great question, Stacey! I love the Absolut ads as well (have a fabulous coffeetable book crammed w/ ads torn from magazines). But my favorite has to be the classic Volkswagon Beetle ads from the 60s and/or 70s. It mastered self-deprecation in a way that was humorous and creative and turned this ugly car into a trend. When the New Beetle debuted, they captured some of the simplicity of the old ads. It's no longer the practical car, and yet I still want one. Really bad.

It was "I'd like to buy the world **a** Coke", yes?

And reiterating what Sarah said -- send it to me and I'll forward to her.

Stacey Cochran said...

Ahh, the Volkswagen ads. Those are classic! Great example, Elisa.

I like the "Does that thing have a Hemi?" car ads with the guy from Hickory.

Watch it here!

saraphen said...

I like the campaigns that attempt to grab your attention without telling you what the product is. When the Infiniti automobile was first introduced the TV ads showed miles of winding highway through beautiful scenery with no cars, just the one word "Infiniti." It caught my interest, even if I never bought one.
More recently there was the rooster ad. You know the one with the rooster crowing in the middle of the night. Apparently that ad spawned a bunch of attack ads by the time they said that the product was AmbienCR. I'm not in the market for a sleep-aid, but I thought it was cute.

Stacey Cochran said...

The rooster one... I've seen that!