Obviously it is big budget; but not really. Dan Brown's publishers are going for a Summer of Symbols, and a Twitter & Facebook presence. The email arrives this afternoon and it is almost impossible not to put down the Isaiah Berlin essays and hop over to the website - where nothing much is happening....yet. Already there is a teaser campaign including this first clue on Twitter:
Codes of ethics? T 10 C; 6 P O T SOD; 12 S O T Z
And an email alert:
IN ANTICIPATION OF THE LONG-AWAITED PUBLICATION OF DAN BROWN'S FIFTH NOVEL, THE LOST SYMBOL, ON SEPTEMBER 15 OF THIS YEAR, DOUBLEDAY IS PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE THE LAUNCH OF A SUMMER-LONG EVENT FEATURING AN ENIGMATIC ARRAY OF CODES, CRYPTIC TRIVIA, PUZZLES, SECRET HISTORY, MAPS, APHORISMS, CIPHERS, ARCANE KNOWLEDGE, AND MORE.
THERE WILL BE A NUMBER OF FOCAL POINTS. THELOSTSYMBOL.COM, NOW DECEPTIVELY SIMPLE IN APPEARANCE, WILL REVEAL MORE AS THE SUMMER ADVANCES. THERE, YOU WILL ALSO FIND LINKS TO THE OFFICIAL DAN BROWN FACEBOOK PAGE AND TO LOSTSYMBOLBOOK - THE OFFICIAL TWITTER PAGE FOR THE NOVEL. DAILY POSTS IN BOTH SPACES WILL CHALLENGE, INTRIGUE, EDUCATE AND ENTERTAIN!
ENJOY YOUR SUMMER...AND REMEMBER TO MARK SEPTEMBER 15TH ON YOUR CALENDARS - WITH A SYMBOL OF YOUR CHOOSING.
It's brilliant marketing; and even though this is Dan Brown the lesson is surely clear for all publishers: build an audience online. Here's a few quotes from the Facebook page.
You liberated my life when you wrote and confirmed, black on white, what I was secretely thinking about Faith and Church. I gladly joined the ranks as one of your best fans.
I have learned so much from your books!!!They have inspired me to study different religions, and sciences. When The Lost Symbol comes out you can count on me being the first to bye a copy!!
Crowdsourcing or what?