Thursday, August 29, 2019
Authors, Have You Written Your Brand Statement?
Authors spend a lot of time and effort to get others excited about their books. They speak before groups, promote themselves to the news media, and live on social media. But what exactly is it that you say or do that draws people to you and clearly defines why you are someone to be flowered with attention?
I guess what I am asking you is this: What is your brand, your core message, your voice, your image, your area of expertise, your essence?
Ok, now answer that in a 20-second elevator speech or even better, a one-sentence tagline.
You need a mantra, one that defines you and inspires others. But it can’t be bland or fill-in-the-blanks generic. If your tagline or mantra sound like that of everyone else you will not stick out, be memorable, or even alluring. You will blend in with the trees and be lost in a forest of competing voices.
Start by listing -- in no particular order -- with no fancy verbiage attached, all of the things you’ve accomplished. First look at what you have done as it relates to what your book is about and your perceived area of expertise. Next, think about your qualifications for penning this book. Exactly what authenticates you as an authority? Lastly, think of interesting parts of your personal life, some of which might fit well with your brand recipe. Maybe you have an interesting hobby or do something unusual outside of your professional life that people would want to cling to.
Your tagline or mantra needs to sound good. It lifts you and others up. It distinguishes you from the pack. It’s your moment to influence and impact others in an empowering way. This is your chance to shape how people view you. Give them optimism, success, humor, intelligence, and power. You want to sound professional and personable, accomplished but relatable, innovative but grounded.
So who gets to hear your branded message? Everyone.
How? Every time you speak, brand yourself. Put it on your letterhead, website, business card, email signature, social media profile, and everything that you do. Express it in your clothes and accessories. Let it be seen in your visual – videos, photos, illustrations. Let it be apparent in your choice of words, your voice, and your body language. Always be you and let others know just who you are.
Oh, and one more thing: believe what you are saying. If this message doesn’t sound legitimate, feel pure, or truly represent your ideas, values, skills, and experiences, don’t use it. Toss it or tweak it, but make sure what you come up with is not only effective and believable but reflective of your truth.
In publishing, there are a million brands running loose, each one reflecting an author’s accomplishments and hopes, each one with insecurities and fears propping it up. Discover who you really are and then tell everyone. Don’t just brand yourself – be a brand that represents who you really are.
“What is originality? Undetected plagiarism.”
--William Ralph Inge
“Everything that needs to be said has already been said. But, since no one was listening, everything must be said again.”
--Andre Gide, Fresh writer
“Those who do not want to imitate anything, produce nothing.”
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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2019. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent. This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America.