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Last week, my wife was featured in the lead story on the front page of USA Today, and then was interviewed live on a national morning news show the following day. And it all started with a Google search. Here’s how it all happened, as well how we used Web marketing and social media to get the word out.

Search Marketing Case Study: How A Google Search Led To National Media Coverage 

It started with a Google Search A couple of years ago, the authors of a new book, Spiritual Adventures in the Snow, were looking for source material for their book. They did a quick Google search:

Google Search - spiritual Skiing

The #1 result was the Adventure Rabbi site. On average the #1 search result receives about 42% of the click throughs on a search results page.

Google Search Result - Spiritual Skiing

They clicked through, and contacted Jamie, and subsequently featured her in a chapter of their book: Spiritual Adventures in the Snow When the book was released, the religion editor of USA Today covered the book, and included Jamie and her first book, God in the Wilderness, in an article in April 2010.

The coverage sent the book into it’s third printing. Fast forward to October 2010: When yet another book came out, America’s Four Gods: What We Say About God — And What That Says About Us, the USA Today reporter asked Jamie for a quote on how her God concept fit within the framework of the book.

Step 1: Google Alert The first indication that the article was going to be in the newspaper came into my Blackberry

Book Marketing - Google Alert

Like any good doting husband who has a wife in the media, I have a Google Alert set up on her name. USA Today is the largest newspaper in the US, with more than 6.9 million daily readers. The last time Jamie was in USA Today, it pushed her first book, God in the Wilderness, into it’s 3rd printing.

We wanted to make sure that if the article mentioned her next book, God Envy: A Rabbi’s Confession. A Book for People Who Don’t Believe God Can Intervene in Their Lives and Why Judaism Is Still Important (Jewish Lights Publishing, 2011), then we would be prepared with a simple one-page website. Here’s a screenshot of the article (and it mentioned the book):

American's views of God Shape attitudes on key issues

Read article – visit here >>Step 2: Email to Adventure Rabbi List However, many people only read the paper when they are traveling, so we wanted to let as many people know to pick up a copy in the morning. We quickly sent out a text-only email (without all the fancy HTML). Part of this was due to timing — we wanted it out quickly, so HTML design can add an hour or two to the creative process. We also wanted it to appear like a personal email sent from Rabbi Korngold’s email program, too. Here’s a copy of the email we sent out, using personalization in the TO line, Subject line and message body:

Email Message out to readers

Personalized email to fans the night before the article ran Step 3: Posted on Facebook, Twitter, Blogs We also posted a link letting people know on Facebook:

Author Posting Book Marketing on Facebook

Posting on Facebook (profile + fan page) The Adventure Rabbi Blog:

Author Posting Book Media Coverage to BlogPosting on the AdventureRabbi.org BlogAnd on Twitter:Posting advance notice for article on Twitter

Posting on TwitterWe also created a simple, one page Website for www.GodEnvy.com:

GodEnvy.com - Website

GodEnvy.com basic 1 page website with email signupWe also added an email signup form, to allow people to receive an email reminder when the book is released: Book to be released - email signup form

The privacy promise made it more likely that someone would fill out the form, as well. Next, I created a Google Adwords CPC Campaign: If someone searched for the book, we wanted them to be able to find the GodEnvy.com website quickly and easily. In Google’s Adwords
I next added 27 quick keywords to the system:



Google Adwords CPC Keywords for book author marketing

Keywords in Google Adwords – My goal: if someone searched for the book on Google, the Ad would come up, and they could click through to the GodEnvy.com website. My secondary goal: I knew that USA Today displays Google’s Advertising on their site, so I created an ad that might be displayed next to the article:

Create CPC Content Ad to display next to featured article Note: I slightly enlarged the ad in the screenshot above for clarification purposes.Want help with your Search Marketing Campaigns or CPC Advertising? We Can Help! Please call 303.499.9318 or 888.772.0777 to speak with a real person. Or click here to have a real person contact you now >>

The Next Day… The next day, the article ran on the lead spot on the front page. USA Today has 6.9 million daily readers, and more than 1,962 commented online on the article. (A friend who has a blog with 100,000 page views a month says he’s lucky if he gets 1-2 comments per article). People were very interested. The GodEnvy.com website received a lot of traffic, including clickthroughs from the ad campaign:

Google CPC Reporting for clickthroughs on Book Marketing campaignAt 4:45 pm the day the article ran, MSNBC called. They wanted Jamie to appear, live on the air, the next morning, to discuss her book and the article. Here’s the link to a copy of the interview:

Rabbi Korngold on MSNBC - Video

If you listen to the interview, the anchor knew some of the chapter titles of the book. As the book isn’t published, it’s clear that the folks at MSNBC found the one-page website, and used it to prepare the anchor for the interview. More Information: We also sent out an email letting people know that Jamie would be on MSNBC, and posted it to Facebook, Twitter and the Adventure Rabbi Blog. We also added a link to the press page on the Adventure Rabbi site, and embedded a copy of the video for those people that missed it.

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