Posted on 2012-Oct-03
Branding seems like a dire need in every business industry. The better the brand image that gets created, the higher value the product becomes. The term “brand loyalty” reflects one of the greatest marketing tools for customers to gain certain levels of trust in the brand. Fast forward to the independent authors in the digital publishing era, social media and other online virtual presence promptly translate to keeping your loyal readers coming back to you.
Promotion, Motivation, Decision
In the fictitious world of your writing, you are authors of your own intellectual property. However, as soon as you are stepping out to sell your book, simple rules of self-promotion require that you set up PR broadcast channels and connect with your fans. Gifts and promotion can fiercely stimulate positive motivation; fans can immediately make a decision to buy discounted book or download free eBooks in a limited time. As a brand ambassador, you must be accessible and available to reply to fans’ tweets, Facebook comments, or Google+ responses. An author’s autotune rap, given away to the first reader who bought his novel, is one of the most unusual promotions I have ever witnessed, but it is effective.
Website as Portfolios
A website transcends personal space into commercial opportunities or portfolio folders for most authors to provide these added values. The virtual space offers a wealth of information stored chronically to express creativity and connectivity. Several authors decide to discuss their free book promotion or blog about their recent journey to a favorite destination. Constant updates of the links to Amazon store are seen as typical efforts to facilitate their sales catalogue.
Brand Lessons from the Past
The New York Times extensively captures writers’ endeavors who built their brand in the past. The list of writers includes Ernest Hemmingway, Vladimir Nabokov, or even Herodotus to name a few. Doing photo shoots was a significant publicity tool to promote their unique identity which is associated with the characters in the books. Hemingway flooded his profile with exclusive photos from war zones and personal excursions. Walt Whitman branded himself as “An American Bard” in 1855 who was imbued with the admirable characteristics: “large, proud, affectionate, eating, drinking, and breeding, his costume manly and free, his face sunburnt and bearded.”
Bookouture to Globalize Writers as a Brand
Taking all the marketing tools mentioned above into consideration, authors are supposed to live larger than they already embodied in their novel. The gap between the creator’s imaginary characters and the promoter of commendable and laudable thoughts must be lessened based on their level of self-promotion. Interestingly, Bookouture goes to great lengths to transform authors into a “global brand” through big publisher experiences and small team creativity.
Dark Side of Business
Russell Smith criticizes the dark side of business when fake reviewers were exposed. Fraudulent reviewers are paid to boost your product admiration beyond reality. The exploitation of friends as a marketing base is a foreseeable issue; fans need to know your life story; authors are fostered by the current trend to cultivate online personality to avoid clashing with their fans’ interests and possibly losing potential buyers.
Illusions vs. Authenticity
These “illusions” can create trouble when the borderline between reality and fiction is overlapping. Several logical explanations postulate that writers are hugely rewarded to express what supposedly exists in their head. Admirers initially follow you because of the creativity you have penned rather than how clever you are from a business perspective.
As a general believer of originality, I posit that you need to balance between asserting who you are and promoting how you sell. Having written a book is a painstaking process enough. Broadly speaking, to stay relevant in this current climate of digital publishing, you need self-promotion to expand your work apart from letting your products say who you are on the shelf. Keeping up the chatty work through social media can assure fans that you inspire them daily rather than yearly. However, writers’ judgment to stay true to your profession is significant to constantly rekindle your passion to work on your next project as a storyteller, not the professional brand ambassador.
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