In addition to your personal website and getting nominated and winning awards, what else can you do to get good publicity for your work and yourself? Here are a couple of good, novel ideas for getting publicity that are fun, too!
1. Cover art. Many journals allow you to submit your own artwork for the cover. If so, you should go for it. If it gets accepted, you should put that on your news page, on your publication page, and in your talks. If it doesn’t get picked, use the pretty picture in your talks anyway and on your own website. Bonus, it is fun to put together some nice images from your work for a cover.
2. Tell others. Tell your department and dean about your good news. Many departments and colleges have news items on their own webpages. Sometimes they ask you to write up the short blurb and give them an image. Good thing you made that pretty image for a cover art, right? Many universities have a new office that will write press releases about publications. You should find out who is in the press office and contact them when you have a new publication out. They like to write press releases about publications is high profile journals like Science, Nature, and PNAS, but they will also write press releases about other new-worthy items, too. Once they write a press release, if could get picked up by local or even national media. You could get an interview on NPR!
3. Mentor well. Your students who go on to do great things after being in your lab are your legacy. Being a good mentor to them is good for them, and it is good for you. While they are still working for you, send them to conferences, have them meet with speakers, and have them attend workshops and short courses. Their good abilities will reflect well on you. Let them graduate when they are ready. (More on mentoring topics in future posts.) When they leave and continue to do well, that will reflect well on you. I know this sounds selfish, and mentoring is certainly not typically thought of in self-centered terms, but you have to admit that creating amazing new scientists is good for your career, too.
4. Spoofs. This one is not for everyone because you have to have the right attitude and the right group of students, but a really fun way to grab a little attention is to make a spoof or parody of a music video or movie with your lab. You can put it on your webpage with your cool science movies. They could go viral, but probably won’t.
I am sure I have missed a huge number of other opportunities for self-promotion. If others have more good ideas, please share as comments, or write a guest post. Hope to hear from you!