The Goldhanger Dog by Wanda Whiteley

The Brief

Midas was hired by author Wanda Whiteley to provide publicity around the publication of her debut novel The Goldhanger Dog (27th May). Our aim was to position The Goldhanger Dog as a must-read novel for the summer, and raise Wanda’s profile as an exciting new name in historical fiction. As Wanda is a self-published author without traditional marketing avenues, it was vital that coverage reached target audiences – historical fiction fans, dog lovers, women’s fiction readers – who may otherwise not be aware of the novel’s release.

 

The Work

We were conscious that Wanda is a new name in the fiction space, so our primary focus was raising awareness of her work among target audiences through national, broadcast, lifestyle and regional press. We worked closely with Wanda at the beginning of the campaign to establish topics she was happy for us to pitch, as well as pieces she was keen to write. With these discussions as a guide, we were able to reach out to press in a strategic and targeted way, using strong ideas that we knew Wanda could deliver effectively.

By pitching media for review several months in advance, we were able to stay on the radar of key outlets, securing reviews in major lifestyle media. Where Wanda’s profile was not yet high enough for straightforward interviews with key outlets, we went down different avenues, pitching short stories for national supplements, or articles on writing tips for lifestyle press.

Wanda was keen to tap into the distinct regional flavour of the novel, which takes place around Essex’s Blackwater Estuary, so we approached author events in the area as well as local press to create buzz among readers in the county.

 

The Results

Midas secured positive reviews for The Goldhanger Dog in Country & Townhouse and Cosmopolitan, with the latter naming it one of their must-read titles for May 2022. In order to raise awareness of her writing among a target audience, we placed a short story by Wanda with Daily Express, with it running in both the Saturday Magazine and Sunday People supplements.

Wanda was interviewed for pieces in The Table Read, TripFiction, Female First, WeAreTheCity, Maldon & Burnham Standard and Writing.ie, as well as a full page profile piece in Essex Life. To tap into the history enthusiast audience, she recorded an episode of the popular Talking Tudors podcast, discussing researching and writing about Tudor Essex for the novel.

We placed a speaking opportunity for Wanda at Essex Author’s Day, during which she delivered a 90 minute workshop to aspiring authors on creating a sense of time and place, and also presented a quickfire pitch for the novel to a large audience of readers.

The blog tour, during which six prominent bloggers featured The Goldhanger Dog, saw rave reviews for the novel, with highlights including:

“An enchanting and immersive tale that follows the close friendship between two unlikely misfits…an engaging historical fiction adventure, and I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Dela and Turnspit”

“Full of unforgettable characters and scenes that make themselves feel as modern and relevant and fraught with danger as any modern thriller, this is a book with reverence, historical significance and a huge beating heart”

“An absolutely wonderful historical story with just a touch of magical realism to make it absolutely entrancing. I absolutely loved this book.”

“I thoroughly enjoyed this tale, a mixture of romance, adventure and history, with a splash of magical realism.”