Amid the usual PR-speak in hyping up Peter Mandelson’s memoirs, which are published on Wednesday (“Frank, honest and revealing”; “First published account of one of the founder members of New Labour”, etc, etc), comes a rather revealing fact: the publisher is not advertising the book. At all.
It might seem strange that a publisher would not want to do everything it could do drum up excitement for one of the best scoops of the memoir season (not least because it is out before Tony Blair’s effort, The Journey, due out in September). But HarperCollins is actually running a canny marketing campaign.
Firstly, it has sold the serialisation rights to The Times, which is pushing the book heavily, and will carry a big set piece interview with the man himself in tomorrow’s paper (we may extract a few gems for you tonight). The paper is also organising four Meet Peter Mandelson events across the country to publicise the book. On top of that, Mandy will carry out a series of broadcast interviews on Thursday, the day of the launch, which ought to drum up some interest.
The fact is all parties involved know they need little more than the man himself to shift copies. Love him or loathe him, Mandy is pure box office.