Making the headlines: Ruby Rides an Elephant

Ruby Rides an Elephant is the debut children’s picture book from Ruby Lovell, published independently by Lychee Books in March 2018. Illustrated by Zara Merrick, it is a vibrant celebration of Sri Lankan culture that encourages curiosity in other cultures, and is inspired by Lovell’s own experience of teaching her mixed-race children about their Sri Lankan heritage. Our objectives were to launch Ruby Lovell as an exciting new children’s author, promote Ruby Rides an Elephant as a unique, leading children’s title for 2018 and drive sales, and showcase the book’s focus on diversity and inclusivity. We also supported Ruby throughout the book production process by consulting on cover design, editorial content and formatting, pricing and stocking the book with high street retailers.

Ruby was motivated to write the book after she struggled to find picture books with characters representing her own mixed-race children, and so we used this experience to position Ruby as a spokesperson on the importance of diversity in children’s literature. Midas delivered a national, regional and specialist PR campaign with over 50 pieces of coverage across print, broadcast and digital titles in the UK, which targeted our key audiences: parents, librarians, teachers and industry experts. Our campaign brought Ruby’s story to life through a variety of news stories, interviews and features, alongside reviews and competitions that showcased the content of the book.

We secured national coverage with interviews on the Press Association, BBC Radio Asian Network, BBC Radio Scotland, Ink Pellet, Big Issue in the North, and Asians UK Magazine. Extensive regional radio interviews with Ruby discussing inclusivity in children’s books were secured across 10 BBC stations including BBC Radio Scotland, Ulster, Leeds, Nottingham, Hereford & Worcester, Coventry & Warwickshire and more.

Midas also secured extensive coverage in the author’s home area of Wandsworth, London with interviews on BBC Radio London – The Jo Good Show, London Live TV, The Resident SW, Brightside – Wandsworth Council Magazine, Primary Times South West London. A special area of focus for this campaign was parenting bloggers, magazines and websites, with pieces secured in BookTrust, Toppsta, Practical Pre-School Magazine, Right Start Magazine, Families Magazine, NetMums, UKMumsTV and more. Midas PR also assisted the author in the setting up a special launch event for the book at Waterstones Putney, with listings to drive footfall secured on leading London parenting app Kidadl, as well as Nappy Valley Net, The List, Essentially Surrey, PutneySW15.

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