Since my last blog post, What is an Author’s Brand… and How Do I Get One? I have done more reading on the subject and I’ve taken my first steps in figuring out/designing my brand. If you’re also an aspiring novelist, perhaps my blog posts on this topic will help you. Disclaimer: I am learning as I go. I am no expert.
“The Basics of Author Branding,” by Theresa Meyers
In her article, “The Basics of Author Branding,” Theresa Meyers, the president of Blue Moon Communications (http://Bluemooncommunications.com/white_papers/author_branding.htm) stresses the importance of mapping out your branding plan. Since I love maps, this concept appeals to me.
How an Author Brand Works
Theresa Meyers gives three steps to explain how an author brand works.
- When readers love your stories, they will “believe that they have formed a relationship” with you. (She calls this “emotional Velcro.”);
- Garnering accolades within the writing community and publishing industry will create a public perception of you; and
- Your author’s voice will set you apart. You have a unique way of writing.
Summary of Theresa Meyers’s Article
What I came away with is that the following things must be done in order to form your author’s brand, and they must be done in the following order:
- Produce good quality product;
- Decide on your message points;
- Be consistent;
- Get your name/brand out there; and
- “Find a word or phrase . . . to define what you do or your unique aspect and own it.”
That last part got my attention. I haven’t seen anyone else give that tip. It has me thinking. I write historical fiction, but what sets my historical fiction apart?
The second item on the list also got my attention. I’m not sure I know what my message points are.
YourWriterPlatform.com’s “Brand Story Worksheet”
In addition to studying what Theresa Meyers wrote about author branding, I have put some serious thought into answering the first four of the 12 questions on the “Brand Story Worksheet found at http://YourWriterPlatform.com.
Right off the bat, the first question forced me to put in writing my beliefs and worldview and analyze how that influences my writing. That was a sobering exercise. It made me seriously consider and discover why I write the historical fiction I write and aspire to write.
The second question forced me to write down my personality strengths and weaknesses. Maybe I did this exercise on a bad day, but I was stunned when I came up with 11 weaknesses and just three strengths! It seems I have some rough edges that need to be smoothed out a little bit.
The third question made me put in writing what motivates me to write. I already knew the answer(s), but it was helpful to write it down. It helped me focus.
The fourth question was harder to answer than I anticipated when I first read it. I not only had to try to identify the types of readers that will value my writing but also say why they will value it.
Until my next blog post, I will continue to work my way through the remaining eight questions on the worksheet, I’ll start drawing my author brand “map,” and I’ll do some research on “message points.” It’s too bad I can’t just write and have the reading public magically clamoring for my work. I’d rather be writing than spending my time jumping through these author branding “hoops,” but that would be too easy. This is a journey. It will not be accomplished overnight.
A Call to Action
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Until my next post, I wish you a good book to read and, if you’re a writer, I hope you have quality writing time. And if you’re an American, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving on Thursday.