Wealthy people and tourists look to New York Magazine to recommend NYC places, happenings, and people. No press to date has matched the publicity power of New York Magazine for my long term business. The Village Voice article was a wonderful introduction to the public. The New York Times feature was great for short term business. My little New York Magazine segment, ‘A Hands-On Approach’ has generated tens of thousands of dollars in private clients and special events over the years. New York Magazine archives articles online so whoever can search whenever for whatever.
One thing I didn’t mention in my previous publicity posts is that once you’ve been featured in a venue, they tend to return for various reasons. I’ve been featured in articles in the New York Times on several occasions. At the turn of the Millennium when everyone was panicking about Y2K and Armageddon, the Times ‘Week in Review’ called various ‘prognosticators’ to prognosticate about what was about to happen. I was the only one who was 100% accurate. I forecast that when we crossed the threshold to the year 2000, people would wake up, brush their teeth, and go to work.
New York Magazine’s online venue ‘The Cut’, asked me to be their expert palmist for a sixteen page feature they called ‘16 Celeb Palm Readings, Annotated and Explained’. From the President to the Prince to the Pope to Angelina Joli and Justin Beiber, I analyzed hands of various celebrities (from photos).
Author’s note: no matter what I write, the editor always has the last word. The content I create is recrafted in the context, style, and language of a venue’s demographic.
Local press is the most financially productive publicity. ‘Time Out New York’ has featured me on several occasions. The most recent article was entitled ‘The best psychics in NYC’.
‘Downtown Magazine’ published a feature they entitled ‘Downtown’s Psychic Scene: A Promising Future’. I was very pleased with the article. It’s great when a journalist ‘gets it right’.
My all-time favorite interview is five pages long and published by an online magazine ~ ‘Refinery 29’. They called it ‘Meet the Real-Deals of NYC Fortune Telling’. The writer, Annie Greenberg, asked great questions, had a wonderful sense of humor, and totally got what I was saying. Unfortunately, the story came out near the end of August 2011 at the exact same time that Hurricane Irene struck NYC and the Northeast coast. Palmistry was the last thing on anyone’s mind. Fortunately ~ it’s always online. I’m still getting calls from searches. I also refer potential clients to the link when they inquire about what to expect from a consultation with me.
National magazine coverage has been good for my ego, but hasn’t done a lot for my pocket book. I was thrilled when ‘Family Circle’ magazine called to interview me. Being featured in a two page article entitled ‘Palmistry’ seemed like a great opportunity to become recognized in the consumer mass market. It wasn’t.
‘Modern Bride Magazine’ approached me with a unique four page feature they entitled ‘Hand in Hand’ ~ I read the hands of couples who were engaged and advised them about their partnership. Couples were able to critique my reading of them. It wasn’t all roses, but it was realistic and I was fine with that. That feature generated a few wedding showers and other party business.
The most productive national magazine for me was Instyle Magazine. I was asked to be their expert palmist for the first major national palmistry column that they entitled ‘high five’. At the time, all the major magazines and newspapers had astrology. No one had palmistry. Instyle wanted to separate themselves from their competition. They assigned me the last page of each issue to analyze a new celebrity hand each month. Check out these issues ~ Kathy Najimy (I got a warm thank you note from Kathy) and Joey Lawrence. Time Inc. publishes Instyle, along with ninety different magazines. I figured it was my golden opportunity to be a player in the magazine world. I loved working with my editor, Leah Rozen. We often joked about my initial analysis ~ especially about what we weren’t able to print. We worked closely to craft what we would say. People Magazine asked Leah to be their film critic and she jumped at the opportunity. That was the beginning of the end for me and ‘high five’.
Instyle’s new editor and I didn’t see eye to eye. She told me that it was really hard to get celebrities to participate because they feared I was going to see things in their hands that they didn’t want anyone to see. I assured her that my interpretations would always be positive and constructive, but she cut the column from the magazine. I was hired on occasion to comment on celebrity hands and to work at celebrity parties for People Magazine.
Conde Nast has been one of my favorite clients for special events. I’ve worked at plenty of parties for Vogue, Glamour, Traveler, Architectural Digest, and others. I’ve read many of their top executives privately and am sometimes hired for their personal parties. I’ve pitched several column ideas to editors. Most recently I proposed a ‘Hands around the World’ column for Conde Nast Traveler after dazzling Glamour’s top advertisers at a private party at the publisher’s home.
There are many magazines dedicated to specific audiences. I’ve experimented with a variety of exclusive markets and am sharing my experiences here.
‘Astrogirl Magazine’ is a very superficial look at combining astrology and young celebrities for teens. Astrogirl hired me to analyze the hands and describe the personalities of the hottest young celebrity idols. They called it ‘Celeb Palm Readings’.
I was trying to expand my speaking business and wrote an article for a national speaking magazine, ‘Sharing Ideas’, called ‘The Sale is in Your Hands’. I figured it would help me promote my speaking business, but it did nothing on its own. I included it in my press materials when I queried meeting planners and speaker bureaus and it gave me a little added credibility.
‘CRUSH fanzine’ hired me to write a feature entitled ‘Palm Analysis’ about hands of well-known modern conceptual, visual, fashion, and performance artists. The editor emailed digital photos and scans (awful quality, no detail). I felt upset that I never got to review how my notes were edited before the article was published. The opening night party was a formal celebration. I got to read some of the people I had read remotely in the issue in person and found them different than my interpretation. I much prefer reading hands in person.
My alma-mater, Carnegie Mellon University, is always searching for bragging rights for alumni. I think it was my first New York Times article that came across their search engines. In 1998, they contacted me and asked if they could feature me in the alumni magazine. I agreed. They sent a journalist from New York City, Judith Trojan, to interview me. Judith was thorough and professional. She wrote a three page feature they called, ‘Mark Seltman ~ A Work in Progress’ (my mate, Joanna, calls me ‘a piece of work in progress’) that appeared in Carnegie Mellon Magazine. The primary benefit of the article seemed to be that it reunited me with old college friends. I also discovered several alumni who had become friends over the years, but we never realized we shared the same college.