THIS is what passes for 'marketing' at book publishers. Some may call it that - I say it falls into the "well, we did something" bucket. I realize the 800th diet book of the year isn't a piece of cake to promote. But paying the toll in the fattest cities - to the tune of $5,000 per? How is the author connecting with his audience? Motivating his buyer to become an advocate? Of course he isn't. Could he? Well, if Sterling is willing to throw this kind of money at promotion - why not fly the author to Kansas, and arrange for several appearances in the market where he speaks to an audience who then get a FREE copy of the book. What if he spoke to a couple hundred people motivated enough by wanting to LOSE weight to show up. What if even 10% of those people were successful in losing weight - you'd agree that those are going to be 20 people telling EVERYONE they know "I went to the health food store/company cafeteria/bookstore and heard this guy - and it really works!!" And then you get some momentum.
It costs a hell of a lot less than paying tolls - and is a heck of a lot better way to sell books.