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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

What's Your Brand?

Day 127

Brands establish trust.
~ Joel Friedlander

One of the best book marketing tips that I can give is to not neglect your author brand. Your brand is how you and your work are identified, and a good brand can be a powerful marketing tool. 

An author brand is made up of several different things including your writing voice, author photo, screen name, tagline, and the overall feel or design that surrounds you. In a good brand, all five of those things will be tied together and will work to identify you as an author. Therefore, it’s essential that each one is given due thought and is planned out to have the maximum impact.

When evaluating the successfulness of your brand, you might want to ask yourself the following questions:

Are you using the same brand across multiple platforms?

Making sure that your branding is consistent will help it have more of an impact. Try using the same author photo and bio on all of your profiles, and making sure that your website and business cards have the same color scheme.

Is your brand sending the message that you want portrayed?

If you’re trying to market a mystery novel, having your website covered in hearts might not be sending the message that you want your readers to pick up. Likewise, if you author vegetarian cookbooks, you probably don’t want to be cooking steak in your author photo.

Who is most likely to be attracted by your brand?

Is the background color of your blog gender exclusive? If your goal is to attract college guys, you might want to think twice before using pink in your color scheme. If you write romance novels, maybe constantly tweeting about WWE might not attract the fan base that you want.

Is your brand unique?

Have you ever read a book that sounded like it was written by someone else? What about followed two bloggers that used the same background and layout? You want your brand to be unique, after all it’s supposed to set you apart, not blend you in.

Are you portrayed as a real person, or just another ‘thing’ on the internet?

You are not your book. You are its author. People enjoy relating to people. They want to know who you are and that you’re real. If you’re not a real person, with real feelings, then you’re just another thing on the internet – and there are already too many things on the internet.

Is it memorable?

This is one of the most important things about your brand. You want it to be something that people remember. You don’t want to be just another author on the block; you want to be the author that sticks in their heads. Having a fun author photo or memorable blog design really can make a difference.

And last but not least – Is it you?

It’s your brand – make sure that it’s something that you like, and defines who you are. If you meet your readers in person, you want to make sure that you didn't give them any false expectations. Be yourself and you can’t go wrong.

Marketing prompt:

Evaluate your author brand to see if it’s working for or against you.

Days to go: 238

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