Building Bookbridgr to leverage bloggers voices for publishing: “Nothing could have prepared me for how gosh-darn complicated it all is.”
And what Ben Willis brought into development at Headline Publishing Group would get even more complicated, just five months after launch: today, his Bookbridgr.com offers book bloggers not only titles from Headline but also from Hachette family Hodder & Stoughton imprints.
The Bookseller’s Sarah Shaffi quoted Willis in February in her report shortly before the initial launch, indicating the kind of innovative understanding some of publishing’s junior leaders have for the importance of online community. At the time, Willis said:
Over the last few years, book bloggers have played an increasingly important role in a book’s publication. They not only command a huge amount of respect from the book industry and reading communities alike, but also often prove fundamental in creating that all-important early ‘buzz’ for an author or book.
Bookbridgr seeks to provide book bloggers with everything they need to get the very most out of our books and authors – from review and competition copies of our books to exclusive author interviews, chapter extracts, blog tours and more.
It would be Shaffi’s story again in July when Willis added imprints including Coronet, John Murray, Mulholland Books, Yellow Kite, Saltyard Books, Sceptre and others.
By 17 July, some 5,000 reviews had been submitted by bloggers. Today, Willis says, about a fifth of them are for Headline books.
Willis, Headline’s affable and wryly self-deprecating publicity and digital campaigns manager, was named one of The Bookseller’s Rising Stars this summer, not only for the Bookbridgr project but also for his Bookseller Industry Award-winning campaign for The Silent Wife.
Obviously, this is a man with a sharp eye for which boats might be floated in the mission to engage readers. And he understands that the highest tide he can catch is online.
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By Porter Anderson | @Porter_Anderson
The FutureBook: ‘No idea what the hell I was doing’: Headline’s Ben Willis
Read the full post at: The Bookseller’s The FutureBook