Author branding is a hot topic I’ve noticed popping up over the interwebs during the last few weeks, and having a background in marketing, the idea of an author having a brand intrigues me. I’ll be the first to tell you that I am not an expert. To be honest, I’m not even sure I want a brand yet. This is my first attempt at branding, and from here on out it should be what you remember me by… If I’m successful, or not.
After reading several articles (listed/linked below), I have come up with a few ideas of what I want to achieve through a brand. These ideas have not been tested or tried, but I will get back to you as soon as I see any results. First, let’s take a look at what ‘branding’ means.
Branding is the act of representing a kind, grade, or make, as indicated by a stamp, trademark, or the like: i.e. the best brand of coffee.
So, ask yourself a few questions…
- What kind of writing do you do?
- What grade or standard do you write at?
- What makes you a writer? What inspires you?
- What types of stories makes up your novels?
- What is your trademark, or what do you want to be known for?
In addition to knowing what branding is, and figuring out why you write what you write, you also need to remember that your brand will stick with you (and your readers) for your entire career. Some might argue that multiple pen names can be a solution to this issue, but I argue that along with a concept, your brand will also be accompanied with an image. There are authors that remain somewhat conspicuous, and I understand the need for privacy. Although, privacy is not the same thing as anonymity, and you will need to have a webpage (design/image) and author picture on your book jacket. My point is, people will know what you look like.
This brings me to another level of branding that I have seen a lot of authors ignore, Image. This image is not referring to your book covers, even though those are important, too. Image goes hand-in-hand with branding. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not implying that you have to look a certain way. I am suggesting that the way you present yourself in person, and on social media, can have an impact on your success. I do not look like Heidi Klum, and if I did I would be a super model. What I do want to make sure to implement in pictures, tweets, bios, status updates, and at signing is an authentic and genuine me (a.k.a. Kallie Ross).
I have decided that I am inspired by conspiracies in our culture and I want to address them in fantasy worlds, giving you a story you can feel something about…Fantasizing Conspiracy with Feeling.
My goal is to someday be recognized by readers for the way I write novels. You have to make up your own mind about who you will be to your readers.
I know it’s not much direction, but I am learning alongside you. I hope that you can use some of my tips, or those linked below, to create a brand for yourself as an author. It might seem overwhelming, but take it one step at a time, and eventually you will make your mark.
Branding Articles I Recently Read…