Sarah Palin is actually headed to Iowa. Palin will be in Sioux City on December 6th at the Barnes and Noble book store to promote her new book Going Rogue.
Palin’s Iowa stop will garner a ton of attention, but she will not have the type of impact that she would have had if she combined the book signing stop with an actual political event. Palin also has some stiff competition when it comes to selling books in Iowa. Mike Huckabee was just in the state selling his Christmas book. It’s the second time he has come to the state that launched his presidential campaign to sell a new book. It’s been a good strategy, at one stop more than a thousand people waited in line to meet the author, Fox News personality, and potential presidential candidate.
Huckabee does a good job of getting people’s information when he comes to town. Last year, Huckabee had a kiosk where people could sign up for the chance to win some hideous Team Huck coat. The contest allowed his to collect peoples name, address, and email address. It will be interesting to see if Palin knows to collect this information.
Palin’s decision to come to Iowa and sell her book is a no-brainer. What’s sad is that she could have done so much more. I’m not going to pretend to know what is going on in her head, but she needs a political advisor who can maximize the impact she can have when traveling to certain states. I know that some don’t think she’s actually going to run for president, but even if she never wants to run for office again, a savvy political advisor would also help her sell more books.
I think it’s safe to say that Palin could have sold 5,000 to 10,000 books had she attended the Iowa Family Policy Center event. Heck, IFPC could have built in the price of the book for every ticket sold, so everyone who attended walked away with a book. The possibilities were endless, but Palin didn’t grab the opportunity.
Palin’s visit to Iowa will just be a well covered blip on the news. The cameras will show her signing books and interacting with people. The lines will be full of excited people waiting to see her. Politically however, it will be a missed opportunity. Her visit will not endear her with the supporters of any Iowa political organization or activist. It’s doubtful that she will harvest the names of the people who came to see her. Instead, she’s just coming to the state for a photo-op which will be no different than any of her other book signing event.
For a potential presidential candidate Iowa should be handled with special care and attention. This is the one state that someone like Palin can come to and make national news. Just look at the media coverage from Tim Pawlenty’s visit. Going Rogue might be a good name for a book, but it’s not a good tactic if you are thinking about running for president.
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