I'm a Social Media Entrepreneur, Professor of Digital Marketing, Author of 5 books, Podcaster and an Organic Farmer.

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Speaking on Book Marketing in the Age of Social Media

When I received the invitation to speak at the Publishing-Next conference, the timings couldn’t have been better. I was wrapping up content for two books (CrowdsourcingTweet ,  CopyRight and Left ) that I was working on and had already started thinking about promotional ideas.

Around the same time a few of my author friends who were cribbing that the book publishers were not promoting their books hard enough. I began to realize that no matter who publishes the book, it is in the authors’ own interest to make use of whatever technology is on hand to promote themselves and their book.

However, the emergence of social media, and the proliferation of channels that allow it, has created much confusion over how these various avenues can be used efficiently so that readers can be reached, their reading tastes deciphered and the appropriate book marketed to them.

While many publishing houses have devoted resources to social media marketing, there seems to be still no consensus on how to tackle this phenomenon. There is also little clarity on how these new avenues should be balanced with the old, or on how reader loyalty can be maintained. The panel session that I’m part of will try to find the answers to the lingering questions:

  • Have the rules of book marketing changed with the advent of social media marketing?
  • Has the book marketer’s job profile changed?
  • Has social media marketing been hyped up a lot? Are there limitations to social media marketing?
  • Have other, previously used marketing methods, lost their relevance?
  • How do publishers manage multi-channel book selling?
  • How has the proliferation of bookstores, in various formats, changed the equation?

I have an awesome set of fellow panelists moderated by  Preeti Vyas, Publisher, FunOKplease.

The other panelists are:
Kinjal Shah, Currently the COO of Crossword Bookstores
Lipika Bhushan, Head of Marketing department, HarperCollins India.
Maegan Chadwick-Dobson, Social Media Strategist, Tara Books
Nikhil Pahwa, Editor and Publisher, MediaNama

I look forward to connecting with them much before our meeting in Goa. And yes, can’t wait to get to the ‘Pondicherry of the West’ 😉

Also, keenly look forward to meeting and getting to know other stalwarts in the publishing business. The speaker list looks seriously impressive.

This conference  is organized by CinnamonTeal Publishing, who pioneered the business of providing publishing services to authors and trade publishers here in India. Located in Goa, they have, thus far, catered to customers in 18 countries and have published books of nearly all genres and in 9 languages. Last September, they were awarded the British Council-sponsored Young Creative Entrepreneur Publishing Award.


Podcast with Vishy Shenoy, Head of Ambadi, on the Guiness Record Attempt for World’s Largest Apron.

Interview With Vishy Shenoy On Guinness Record Initiative For Largest Apron from kiruba on Vimeo.

I caught up with Vishy Shenoy, the head of Ambadi, a division of the $3 Billion Murugappa Group. He is the brain behind the attempt to create the World’s largest apron.

In this video, I ask him why even attempt such an elaborate exercise. And his answers make sense. Ambadi is in the business of household apparels and aprons are their biggest export items. They mostly serve the overseas market and having a Guinness World Record to their name gives them a lot of credibility and brand recall. Its smart marketing.

Watch the video. It makes for an interesting conversation and has great marketing tips. We also shot lots of photographs from the Guinness World Record event.


Witnessing a Guinness World Record for World’s Largest Apron

I have never witnessed a Guinness World Record in the making in real life. All that could change today evening when I visit the venue where the record for the World’s Largest Apron will be attempted.

Ambadi, part of the Murugappa Group conglomerate, is attempting this World record.

This Guinness World Record is attempted at YMCA Grounds in Nandanam, Chennai. The event is between 3 to 4:30 pm today (Wednesday, 22nd June). All are welcome.

Will take snaps of the event and let you know the experience later tonight.


Need Your Help : Trying to Source Wire-Cut Bricks


Photo : Donnr MB

I have always loved houses that have earthy looks. Houses with exposed bricks have fascinated me. For long, I have been imagining living in such a house. Now, that I’m closer to the dream, I’d like to make it happen.

We bake our own hand-made bricks in our farm but they cannot be used for exposed walls. For cemented walls, they are quite good but not for exposed ones. Hence, looking outside.

The wire-cut bricks are usually machine made. They are compressed and hence much stronger and heavier. More importantly,  they have sharp edges which are essential for a good looking exposed brick wall.

However, I’m having difficulty in sourcing good grade Wire-Cut bricks. The best ones are either available in Kerala or in Karnataka. The travel costs tend to be prohibitive.

Do you know anyone who makes these wire-cut bricks in Tamilnadu? Preferably somewhere closer to Chennai or Tindivanam. Alternatively, any reference to an architect or a builder who might have a lead would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for your help. I can be reached at 9841597744 and Kiruba(@)Kiruba.com.


Selected Awesome Set of Wooden Pillars

NOTE:  I’m NOT a dealer in wooden pillars.  So, please DO NOT call me inquiring for the same.  The best places for you to get these wooden pillars are from two places:   1) Pondicherry.  On the East Coast Road (ECR), near Auroville, there are dozens of antique shops that has these pillars. No, I don’t have the phone numbers of any of them.   2) The other place is Karaikudi in Tamilnadu. 

Unfortunately, I can’t provide any more information on these wooden pillars. Thank you for respecting my privacy and not calling me. I’ve been getting way too many calls and hence this message. Appreciate it. 

 

 

After hunting high and low for the right wooden pillars for the farmhouse that I’m currently constructing at our 7 acre farm, we finally found a set of 4 identical pillars.   We instantly fell in love with them. Not only were they in amazing condition, they were also the exact height and thickness that we had wanted.

The pilllars are 7.9 feet in height in its entirety. A full pillar has three parts. (Watch the video above where I explain this clearly.)  The top part with ornamental woodwork is called called ‘Bhondil’ and its about 1 foot thick. Then comes the wooden pillar which is 6.1 feet in height. The bottom most portion is a round granite stone which is 7 inches in height.

The pillar is about half foot lesser than what I was originally aiming for. But our mason says its the perfect height as the belt beam will come atop the pillars and that will be atleast half foot thick. So, it all adds up fine.

The pillars’ circumference at its thickest point is 32 inches. Just the perfect thickness that I had wanted.

The pillars are made of  ‘Satin Wood’ or Vaippu Maram as its called locally. Its not as expensive as Teak or Rosewood but just as good. Locals say that having this variety of wood brings good luck to the household. I don’t believe in such sentiments. All I care is that it feels solid and looks great.

The best part was the pricing. Most other shops were charging anywhere between Rs.10,000 to Rs.15,000 for similar pillar. I managed to buy this for Rs.6750 per pillar which is a damn good bargain. Helps to have the wife alongside! 🙂

I took this video right after we paid the advance to the antique furniture guy. The video also features a small conversation with him about the pillars. Even though it was still evening, there was no electricity then. So, had to shoot the video in low light.

This was a very satisfying purchase. The pillars are currently being polished and we will get the final delivery on Thursday, 23rd June. Can’t wait !

NOTE:  I’m NOT a dealer in wooden pillars.  So, please DO NOT call me inquiring for the same.  The best places for you to get these wooden pillars are from two places:   1) Pondicherry.  On the East Coast Road (ECR), near Auroville, there are dozens of antique shops that has these pillars. No, I don’t have the phone numbers of any of them.   2) The other place is Karaikudi in Tamilnadu. 

Unfortunately, I can’t provide any more information on these wooden pillars. Thank you for respecting my privacy and not calling me. I’ve been getting way too many calls and hence this message. Appreciate it. 





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