This unusual book offers a rare opportunity to get the inside scoop and learn secrets of the stars from a top media coach and been-there-done-that marketing expert. Susan Harrow helps people gain and keep media attention. While that may not be what you are looking for today, the principles she teaches may be just what you need to get to the next level in wherever it is you’re going, whether that means becoming a better one-on-one presenter or a more magnetic presence on stage at your next company convention.

Do you sometimes worry that marketing yourself or your product may lead you to compromise your values—that you have to brag or “sell your soul” in order to get what you want? Susan Harrow’s book shows how you can gracefully glide to the top, as long as you take into account some practical principles that combine business smarts, preparation and the courage to be true to yourself. She shows how you can easily become mediagenic if you give yourself the right tools and bank on authenticity—because if you don’t, she warns, your audience will be unforgiving.

The first part of this book helps you understand publicity and how it can help you achieve your goals and dreams more quickly. Next, Susan shows you how to start a publicity campaign, write compelling materials (from riveting stories to complete press kits) and find your own style while resolving your personal hang-ups. She then teaches you how to prepare yourself verbally and psychologically for media attention. The next logical step is to get you ready for a local TV interview and book you on a national talk show.

If you’ve never considered going on Oprah, some chapters in this book may not apply to you directly, but the main principles are for everyone—especially anyone looking to become better at selling a product or an idea—as they teach you to be the message you want to give. Here are some one-liners I particularly enjoyed:

“Show your vulnerability, then balance it with your expertise.”

“Body language is mostly unconscious, so that is where all your insecurities show up.”

“People don’t want you to be perfect; they want the opportunity to relate to you.”

Whether you are on a first date or in a prospecting interview, you are a walking, talking message of our intention. While you are talking, people listen to perceive who you are as a person. Are your words in alignment with your genuine attitude? Do you feel confident about your subject? Are you in touch with your listener, or are you rambling? Do you dress to express yourself?

If this stuff works to get you on TV, wouldn’t you think it may help you shine more next time you are in front of a room or on stage? While I’m not ready to get booked on Oprah, I know a myriad of situations in my life where I can benefit from what I learned in this fun and insightful read.

Hardcover, 373 pages, $24.95; HarperCollins, 2002