Jim Rubart

Since 1994, Jim Rubart has worked with clients such as AT&T/Cingular, RE/MAX, ABC and Clear Channel radio though his company Barefoot Marketing, but his passion is writing fiction. His debut novel ROOMS released in April and hit the bestseller list in September. His next novel, BOOK OF DAYS released in January. He's also a photographer, guitarist, professional speaker, golfer, and semi-pro magician. He lives in the Northwest with the world's most perfect wife and his two almost-perfect sons. No, he doesn't sleep much. You can reach him at jlrudini[at]comcast.net, or visit his website at http://www.jimrubart.com/.

Sound Bites R You

One of my goals for 2011 was to clean out my inbox every day. Epic fail. Wait. Epic isn’t a big enough word. Gargantuan failure is more accurate. I lasted until January 3 before the e-mail flood buried me.

Being a the-glass-is-half-full-and-someone-will-be-along-soon-to-fill-it-up kind of guy, I do believe somewhere in the recesses of my deep insanity that I’ll catch up and get that pup cleaned out. But in my more realistic moments, I confess there will be thousands of e-mails at the end of 2011 that deserved my attention but never got it.

Why? The simple answer is I don’t have time to answer all of them. The more complex answer is so many things compete for my attention these days I choose not to use my limited time bank to answer all my e-mails.

No, I refuse to comment on the stack of private Facebook messages I haven’t gotten to.

Is there a point to this, Jim?

Yes, here’s my thesis: We’re not as patient as we used to be. The time drain on our lives is epidemic. I don’t need to point out the areas, you’re thinking of them right now: blogs, Twitter, Facebook, TV, movies, Internet, e-mail friends, family, working out, and reading … (wait, reading isn’t a time drain, it’s life!)

Fine, I get it. We’re impatient. How does your point apply to marketing?

Because people (editors, agents, readers) have more coming at them, we need to communicate more often in sound bites. In media terms a sound bite could be described as a concise, communication that clearly conveys a thought or idea. (I hear you alliteration junkies clapping, thank you.)

Am I actually suggesting you to talk to people in twenty or thirty-word sentences? Yes. Exactly.

Think about your elevator pitch. It’s short. Pithy. Makes people go, “Oooooo.” That’s the same way you need to think about answering any question an editor, agent, or reader asks you.

If you’re pre-published, you are marketing to editors and agents every time you talk to them. Go on too long and their eyes not only glaze over, they shut at least mentally.

If you’re published, you’re marketing to readers (and possibly to agents and editors as well) and doing radio, TV, and magazine interviews, posting on your blog, Twitter, and Facebook. If you wah, wah, wah like Charlie Brown’s parents, no one will buy you or your books.

Remember, you are marketing in every moment whether you admit it or not.

Sorry this column is a little shorter than usual, I need to go check my inbox.

(As always, if you have a marketing question you’d like me to address, shoot an, uh, e-mail my way.)


Book Of Days