Amazon Marketing rejects advertisement hurting religious setiments

Amazon recently rejected an advertisement which they felt is hurting religious sentiments. This advertisement was for a client of ours who has a book questioning Biblical Jesus while maintaining existence of Historical Jesus.

Here is the rejection email:

Thank you for submitting your ad campaign “xyz” for review. We are unable to serve your ad campaign because it does not comply with our Book Ads Creative Acceptance Policy. Specifically,

– Your Product Display Ad is for a non-fiction religion-specific book. These books include sacred texts (Qur’an, Bible, Bhagavad Gita, Guru Granth Sahib, etc.), commentary on these sacred texts, and educational or explanatory books about the specific religion. To help provide a welcoming experience for customers of all faiths and beliefs, please promote this book using our keyword-targeted ads (Sponsored Brands and Sponsored Products) selecting keywords relevant to that religion or about religion in general.
– Your book title or cover contains misspellings.

We appealed to them stating we are using Keyword Targeting ads and there are no misspellings in the title.

They wrote back:

Thanks for your patience. We have determined that the content of your book is not suitable for all audiences. 

We review ads on a case-by-case basis and reserve the right to not run ads that contain elements that may not be appropriate for all audiences. This may include ads for non-fiction controversial books related to a particular religion. 
The content of your book may be interpreted to be offensive for readers of a particular religion and it may hurt their sentiments and therefor it is not appropriate for advertisement.

For more details on our Amazon Advertising policy, check:

The book contains arguments on the subject and is not at all offensive to the religion.

Press Release

India’s first full service Book PR Agency completes 2.5 years

MUMBAI, MAHARASHTRA, INDIA, October 29, 2018 – More than 300 new books are released every day in India and the authors are finding it difficult to garner attention to their work because of the clutter. The high decibel political, business and entertainment news makes the situation even worse for authors trying to compete for the mind space and eyeballs. To cater to this need, India’s first full-service Book Public Relations brand,, was introduced in 2016. A host of PR services for both pre-launch and post-launch of books has been successfully offered under the brand since its launch. Authors are provided full or partial services based on their requirement and budget. has implemented more than 30 book promotion campaigns for both fiction and nonfiction books.

There are other companies offering partial PR services but brings in a lot of innovation, analytics, personal touch and of course wealth of experience to the campaigns.

“The idea of a full-fledged PR service for books germinated after we approached many PR agencies for our books and authors”, says Joseph P Chacko, Publisher at Frontier India Technology. “All the PR offers were either product or corporate oriented. But books required a different approach. So we tried some known methods and evolved some new methods. A mix of PR and Advertising helped to cater to our objectives. These learnings are now being offered to other authors via a marketing company Itail Agencies LLP under brand,” he adds.

Initially, the effort was to provide Book PR services to only traditionally published authors and as the experience grew the agency began offering the services to self-published authors too.

Itail Agencies LLP offers a full spectrum of publishing and PR services for self-published authors. Traditionally published authors can choose specific services like manuscript editing or PR services or book distribution services provided by the company. Self-Publishing services are offered under the imprint BruteGorilla. The company also offers assisted publishing offers to a select few which is a hybrid between self-publishing and traditional publishing.


5 reasons you should read short story collection Monsoon Minds by Ravi Nambiar

MONSOON MINDS – a collection of short stories by Ravi Nambiar takes the readers through all-together different rustic village settings with his lucid and simple style of writing which appeals to readers of all ages. The characters in these stories are so realistic that readers will “see” them as having met them sometime some-where. Each story depicts typical personal traits and opens up heart-warming human interactions. Set in the Pre-Tech-Invasion era, readers are amused how the life is depicted nicely without any “mobile communications”, “social networking” etc… just plain and smooth personal interactions.

Monsoon Minds
Monsoon Minds by Ravi Nambiar

1. In “A Rural Desire” – one finds a typical curiosity which every one has as to how his or her own Obituary column with picture would like…

2. Love, crush, infatuation, which is so common in everyone’s life is beautifully depicted in “An Old Love Story”, “By the Waves”.

3. Characters in these stories come from all walks of life and of all ages which captivate the minds of the readers with their varied personalities – the flower-vending small and innocent girl; the young and bubbly young girl, middle aged people and even characters on their last leg of this earthly journey.

4. Dilemma and paradoxes in life, which are so very common, find their expression in “The God of Mason”, “The Last Pilgrimage”.

5. Love and affection for the pets and animals comes through vividly in “A Divine Bonding”. Readers actually feel the “Divine Bonding” in this simple and heart-rendering narrative.

Through all these short stories, which never lead to the boredom, Ravi has captured the tender feelings of these innocent and offers insight into the world, culture, and lives of the next-door Indian people.

Ravi Nambiar writes occasionally on topics like sentimental values and relationships. A believer in karma, he lives in Bangalore, India.


5 reasons you should read the novel Rafflesia – The Banished Princess by Gautam

When was the last time you called up your childhood friends to say how much you miss them? When was the last time you told your parents how much they mean to you? When was the last time you did something you really enjoy doing? Questions that cross our way sometime or the other. That touch ordinary human lives every day. Intense, gripping and refreshingly different, ‘Rafflesia The Banished Princess‘ is a heart-warming tale about ordinary people and their inherent desire to remain happy, the people they care about, the things they dream of and live for and events that change their lives forever!

Rafflesia - The Banished Princess by Gautam
Rafflesia – The Banished Princess by Gautam

Incredibly evocative: A touching social drama focused on ordinary lives. The characters are very fundamental, layered, vulnerable and flawed. Reading the book is an intensely emotional experience.

Evokes strong visuals: Wildly scenic with vivid descriptions throughout evoke strong visuals while reading. It is almost like watching a movie at the theatre. There is a dream like feel throughout the story.

Identifiable characters: Poignant situations and believable characters, they are people you know. They are just near you, somewhere. Or they may be those you have left behind. The book leaves you with a strong feeling of connecting to your past.

Engaging narrative: The story grows on the reader slowly and leaves a lingering sense of deja-vu by the time it ends. An engaging narrative makes it a worthwhile read, something you would like to catch on a lazy rainy afternoon or while on a long holiday.

Refreshingly different: Absolutely unpretentious with a very different take on relationships. The story celebrates relationships, the ones that are less celebrated. It celebrates music. It celebrates colours. It celebrates life, just the way it is!

Gautam says “Writing a book has been a childhood dream. I remember dad reading out the ‘Merchant of Venice’ when I was quite young. I hadn’t understood much then. Vague memories of dad’s rimmed glasses and the story of Shylock still remain. Dickens happened a few years later and I thought I was Pip. Along came the Famous Five and Hardy Boys and then Harold Robbins and Sidney Sheldon. Before I realized, I was an adolescent. Life flew fast. One thing led to the other and all that remains of my childhood today are a collection of some fleeting yet beautiful memories. But somewhere deep down, the desire to write something always remained strong. It played hide and seek with me for years. I did not know what to write about. Whatever little I managed remained in a diary, then floppy disks, eventually making their way into my laptop. During weekdays I am a business analyst dabbling with figures and charts, a writer for a few hours during weekends, music, travel and reading at other times.”


How Chicken Soup for the Soul book became a hit

Here is a very inspiring story how Jack Canfield, a motivational speaker, brought his book Chicken Soup for the Soul to fame.

When Mark Victor Hansen and I needed a title for the book of inspirational and motivational stories that we had compiled, I decided to meditate an hour a day in search of the perfect title. My approach was simple: I asked God to give me a title – and then I sat in silence waiting for it.

Nothing came to me the first two days… But on the third day, a green chalkboard suddenly emerged in my mind. I watched as a hand appeared and wrote the words, “Chicken Soup” on the board.

I contemplated that for a moment, then I asked what I assumed was God’s hand: “What does chicken soup have to do with this book?”

I heard, “Your grandmother used to give you chicken soup when you were sick as a kid.”

I replied, “But this book isn’t about sick people.”

The voice responded, “People’s spirits are sick.”

This was in 1992, during the recession that accompanied the first Gulf War, and many people were indeed living in fear, hopelessness, and resignation.

I played with the title “Chicken Soup for the Spirit,” but that didn’t sound quite right, and then it morphed into “Chicken Soup for the Soul” – and I immediately got goose bumps (what Mark likes to call “God bumps”). They almost always seem to accompany an idea that is deeply aligned with what is for my highest good.

I immediately got up from meditation and told my wife, who also got goose bumps. Then I called Mark, who got goose bumps, and our agent, who got goose bumps as well. By the end of the day the full title had emerged—Chicken Soup for the Soul: 101 Stories to Open the Heart and Rekindle the Spirit.

chicken soup for the soul[ ATTRIBUTE: Please check:[email protected]/7162736475 to find out how to attribute this image ]

So once we had our divinely inspired title, Mark, our agent, and I headed off to New York City to sell our book.

Unfortunately, during the three days, we were in New York City, no one at the fifteen publishing houses we visited was as excited about our book as we were. Everyone told us that nobody bought collections of short stories and that our title was stupid. Our agent became so discouraged that he gave us the book back and said he could not sell it.

Over the next five months, we were rejected by 144 publishers. Eventually, we went to the American Booksellers Association Convention and walked the floor of the exhibit area for three days asking hundreds of publishers, “Will you publish our book?” It wasn’t until late in the third day that Health Communications, Inc., a little publisher in Deerfield Beach, Florida, decided to seriously look at our book. A month later they decided to publish it.

When the book finally came out in July 1993, it was not an overnight success. It wasn’t until a year later that it hit its first bestsellers list. But it was during that year that Mark and I came up with what we dubbed the Rule of Five.

We agreed to take five action steps every single day, except on holidays and vacations, to promote and sell our book. One day, we called five radio stations and asked them to interview us about the book. On another, we sent out five free review copies to book reviewers and influential people.

One of those people was the producer of the hit television show Touched by an Angel. She was so taken by the book that she required all of her writers, directors, cameramen, and other crew members to read the book. She said that the feelings generated and evoked by our stories were the same ones she wanted to create in their TV episodes. That story made it into Variety and later onto the Associated Press wire and generated thousands of book sales.

We also bought the book 1001 Ways to Market Your Book, by John Kremer, and wrote each way on a Post-it note and stuck them all on a long wall in our office. We did five of those suggestions every day. Eventually, Chicken Soup for the Soul reached number one on the New York Times list and stayed there for almost three years, selling ten million copies along the way.

Click here for the Source.


An author should build up his platform

Building an platform is an amazingly powerful thing an author can do. Tim Grahl, a successful author and book marketer has identified 3 steps for building an author platform.

Permission. You need to have a way to communicate with your fans that reliably gets their attention and drives them into action.

Content. You need to put your work out into the world widely and freely, for people to easily find and interact with.

Outreach. You need a way to move people from not knowing you exist to knowing you exist.

If an author can figure out a way to figure out the Outreach + Content + Permission equation, he or she is going to be successful.

3 common ways of getting connected to potential readers are 1) Speaking at a conference or college or other places 2) Guest Blog 3) Find other authors to promote you on their platform.

Most authors mistake a platform as a channel for self-promotion hard sales. It is not. It will annoy your readers.

If you haven’t started making an author platform, do it now as it takes years to build one.


Quotes from Indian Authors for making a book successful

Most of us aspire to write a book and ofcourse make it successful. While writing a book is tedious but easier than making it successful. Hindustan Times has compiled eight points that Indian authors recommend for making a book successful. Although Preeti Vyas is not an author herself, her husband Amish Tripathi credits her for being the driving force behind the marketing of the books.

1) ‘Believe in the story. You live in a free country where you have a right to be heard. Don’t be afraid of putting it out there’ – Preeti Vyas

2) ‘Bounce ideas off Friends and family. A lot of the plans for the Immortals book came from calling people home and feeding them coffee, dinner and apple pie’ – Preeti Vyas

3) ‘Writing isn’t everything. There are a lot of books out there. Many don’t make it to the reader. Yours has to shout “I’m here! I deserve to be read!” – Sangram Surve

4) ‘Approach every publisher It’s still the best way to get a book out’ – Preeti Vyas

5) ‘Don’t fear failure. The moment you are afraid of what people, readers, critics think, you’ll be paralyzed. You can’t make decisions based on market research’ – Amish Tripathi

6) ‘Prepare to do the selling. Publishers don’t have the bandwidth or the money to push every book. Figure out what each of your stakeholders’ selfish interest is and add it to your marketing plan’ – Sangram Surve

7) If it doesn’t work, it’s cool, man everyone gets three out of 10 decisions wrong. But if you’re wrong more often than you’re right, you have a capability issue. You probably should be in another industry’ – Amish Tripathi

8) Remember that in India, the average bestseller is still only 3,000 to 10,000 copies – Sivaraman Balakrishnan

Let us know what is your experience?