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Hint: Become a publicity hound

MarketingSkokie

From a publicity perspective, Larry Kay has made a good start with some awards, national distribution and experts involved with the company that lend it credibility, says Andrea Blain, a specialist for 16 years in publicity for children's entertainment and educational DVDs and other products. She runs Andrea Blain Public Relations out of Skokie, Ill.

Blain recommends Kay consider a national, grass-roots publicity campaign to land positive press coverage in print and on blogs and websites that appeal to moms of young children.

"With independent children's DVDs, the smaller independent producers don't have the budget for those big marketing and advertising TV campaigns," Blain says. "So we rely more on publicity to get the word out."

The goal of publicity is to drive awareness, she says. If sales respond too, all the better, but it's not the primary focus.

Mom bloggers are a target she is increasingly working to win over for her clients' products. That's in part because the publicity almost directly reaches the target who, while reading, can click a link and instantly purchase or learn more about the product. She also suggests that Kay expand beyond the pet market.

"He need reviews in the library and educational press so they can start stocking the DVD," she says.

Eventually for Animal Wow to grow "word of mouth," it needs to expand beyond one title into three, four or five, she says.

Kay does have three other Animal Wow projects on his drawing board, some geared to older children, but he needs money to have them produced, he says.

The right publicity might help. "With more awards, more press coverage and more buzz, the series has a better chance to grow beyond its current positioning," Blain says.

cyndia.zwahlen@latimes.com

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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