What is an author’s brand?
An author’s brand extends beyond your name or logo – it’s a composite of all the aspects that readers associate with you. This could encompass your unique writing style, the themes you unravel, the rapport you share with fans, your online presence, and much more. These elements help you distinguish yourself among your readers and potential readers. Essentially, your author’s brand is your readers’ perception of you – what they think and know about you.
Do authors need branding?
In the ever-competitive realm of book publishing, a strong author brand is indispensable. It enables readers to recognize your work among a multitude, providing a clear expectation of what your books entail. Your brand essentially serves as a lighthouse for your target audience, guiding them towards your work. Without a defined brand, readers might struggle to determine if your books and related content align with their preferences. Keep in mind that from the moment you publish your first work, you are unconsciously building your brand, influencing your readers’ perception of you.
How to create your own brand?
Constructing an author’s brand necessitates introspection, strategic thinking, and sustained effort. When I work with authors, we usually start by defining four fundamental steps to build an author’s brand:
Identify Your Author Type: This involves understanding the nature of your books – what common elements do they share? These could be recurring themes, characteristic traits of your characters, or even your distinctive writing style. Try to imagine how a reader would describe you as their favorite author to a friend. That description will illuminate what kind of author you are and should form the backbone of your brand.
Determine Your Offering: What are you providing to your readers? Is it just a series of books, or are you offering more – like a blog, services, or merchandise? You need to define what you’re offering for a meaningful reader interaction.
Decide the Mode of Interaction: You determine how you interact with your readers – be it through books, fan groups, exhibitions, or mailing lists. This choice of interaction mediums is crucial to your author brand.
Establish a Visual Identity: To communicate your message effectively, a consistent visual theme across your book covers, website, and social media is vital. Visual elements like images, colors, graphics, and illustrations deliver an emotional message. Given that fiction readers primarily seek emotions, your visual design will play a critical role in attracting them.
How does branding help independent authors sell their books?
A strong author’s brand facilitates differentiation of your work from others, thereby creating a unique selling point. If a reader enjoyed one of your books, they’re more likely to pick another one associated with your brand. Essentially, your brand promises a certain level of quality and style, reducing the perceived risk of their purchasing decision.
If an author lacks a well-established brand, readers often struggle to correlate various books, social networks, and the author’s advertisements. They simply don’t recognize the author amidst the vast sea of content. Consequently, it hampers the chances of sparking word-of-mouth promotions and collaborative opportunities within the book industry.
Remember, your author brand is a pledge to your readers – a promise of what they can expect from your books. By cultivating a robust author brand, you’re fostering a lasting relationship with your readers. This won’t just aid in selling your current book but also any future books you write.