Print media lead times

If you want to get print media coverage to coincide with your book release in stores, you have to be ready to contact magazine editors 3 to 6 months before your book is printed. That’s how far in advance they plan their editorial.

That means if promotional timing is critical for your book to sell, you must start work on publicity before your book is ready for sale. You can send copies of the book manuscript to key target media who ask to see it in advance. Often, the media want to see your book content before they agree to endorse it.

Print lead times vary for different magazines which can be categorised into:

Long-lead magazines

Annual, quarterly, bi-monthly and monthly magazines plan their editorial content with really long lead times. These are the ones you have to be ready to contact at least 3 to 6 months before your book is out.

Short-lead magazines

Fortnightly and weekly magazines have shorter lead times. This could be good news if you want faster results. Still, they work months in advance – similar to newspaper magazines.

Newspaper magazines

Magazines inserted into newspapers have much longer lead times for production than general news pages. If you are interviewed by a newspaper reporter, generally the story could be published the very next day. Not so for newspaper magazines – they tend to work to production deadlines around one month in advance and plan their content even further ahead.

So don’t wait to put together your media kit – you can get ready to contact the media before your book is in its editing and printing stages.

Yours in book publicity

Chelsea McLean

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