author brandingBranding is the buzz word now for creating a public image of yourself. For authors, especially new writers, it is imperative that you build a brand around your name. Almost without exception, I see bios of authors that read, ‘Authour of Jack The Rat and Tinkle Tom’s Adventures’.

Quite honestly, writing bios such as this creates nothing, as no one is interested in your book because they have never heard of you ,let alone your book. Especially if you have registered yourself under a username such as ‘NightWriter’ or any type of anonymous tagline. Would you buy these books from this unknown person? Of course not. Then when ‘NightWriter’ finds sales are pitiful, of course resorting to a ‘BUY MY BOOK’ promotion blitz takes over due to desperation, and the end is nigh for author and books.

A much better approach is to brand yourself and forget about your books for a while. In other words sell yourself, not books. When people know your name and have an interest in who you are and what you do, they will easily find you . Perhaps even be interested enough to buy one of your books. A good example is Amanda Hocking. I know her name well, but I can’t recall a single title she has written. But if I want to read one of her books I could find them in no time on Amazon.

So where do you start?

Re-write your bio on every site where you are registered and concentrate on building on your personality and interests. Your a writer, so write creatively.

If you’re not using your own name as your username, open a new account with your name and add ‘author’ or ‘writer’ so it’s clear who you are and what you do.

Check your blog to make sure your name is the real centre of attention and have a well written ‘About Me’ page and an easy way for readers to contact you along with a clear RSS feed and subscribe button.

Use Social Media wisely and participate. Don’t just post about you, you, you and your book. Remember, forget the books for a while. I have mentioned before that you need to ‘make friends, make fans, make buyers’. Aggressive advertising is for the sides of bus stops, not Social Media.

Search for your name on Google at least once a week and check your progression. This is the best way to see if others are linking to your blog or mentioning you in other areas of the Internet.

Twitter has become a must for authors. If you’re not on Twitter, get on and start following readers and book reviewers. Don’t get carried away with following only other authors. Then participate in the conversation and make friends.

Groups on Facebook are becoming irrelevant because they aren’t crawled by Search Engines anymore, so don’t waste time there. Build on your personal Facebook profile, and add a Facebook Page.

Register on a good number of Social sites and add a post or two. You don’t have to use them all that much as the important part has been achieved by setting up your profile. Your bio will now get listings on search engines. Make sure you have a Google account and a well written bio there as this will come up first in web searches using your name.

Pick your social sites to concentrate on and use them daily to build your brand. Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads is an effective threesome for an author. Ten minutes spent on each per day will really help your promotion.

Automate and schedule your blog posts and keep posting. Your blog is the key to your success.

Register with Stumbleupon and build your followers first, then use it sparingly from time to time to share your own blog posts.

So what are you waiting for? Get to work on selling yourself, and the books will sell themselves.

Brand Yourself Not Your Book

21 thoughts on “Brand Yourself Not Your Book

  • 20/08/2011 at 7:38 pm

    Good post, though I don’t really want to get into the habit of googling myself. Sure, there are people out there that like me, but there also might be someone who has a “Brayden Hirsch-haters” blog or Facebook group. Either way, I’d rather not know.

    Ignorance, in this case, is truly bliss.

  • 20/08/2011 at 8:20 pm

    At this point, I think a real branding would be easier … heat up the iron, and sssssssssssssssssss. A lazy J for me. I’ve been working on my website again that remains at a bare bones level because the html fiddling makes me CRAZY! Thank you for allowing me to vent.

  • 08/10/2011 at 4:00 am

    In a way, I have to agree with Johnny Gibbings’ comment.
    This article has to be taken with a grain of salt because some authors would spend too much time on twitter and other social media that they tend to get wrapped up in their awesomeness that their books suffer. I have met some authors who write really witty lines in 140 characters or less yet whose books are underdeveloped (Shameful really. I was once tempted to kid them about it but I decided not to do it. Hehe). In this day and age, an author has to balance visibility on the web plus creating a great freakin’ novel. Because if your book is good, then that means you’re really good and no one can question that. The loyal following will just ultimately follow.

  • 29/10/2011 at 10:36 pm

    I like the article and the branding aspect of it all really depends on people you meet and get to know as a person. There’s such a thing as being subjective and objective and all of us know that some may like pasta whereas someone else may totally avoid it. Thanks for your input.

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