Marketing

How to Build Your Author Brand: A 5-Step Guide

Making an impact in the literary community takes more than just a great story or idea. You’ll also have to develop a personal brand—your author brand.

A solid author brand will help differentiate you from your fellow writers and make you recognizable to your readers. When developed early or planned even before you publish, it can help you become the author you want to be and eventually find your share of loyal readers.

Ready to build your own brand? Here are five steps you can follow.

  1. Answer this: “Who am I as an author?”
    Think about how you want other people to view you as an author. Taking the time to do an intensive self-analysis will give you a better idea about how to present yourself to your readers.

    Here are some ideas to get you started:

    • Assess your writings
      Are there any common themes in your work? Do you find yourself writing about particular topics a lot? Determine what kind of writer you are and, to an extent, what your core values and passions are.
    • Identify your personality traits
      There is no right or wrong answer here. All you need to do is determine the aspects of your personality that you think will help you become a more recognizable author.
    • Ask the people closest to you
      These people know you best, so their opinions can help you identify which of your qualities will set you apart from other authors.
  2. Write it all down
    Since you have to continuously develop your brand, it helps to get it all in writing. Here are three things you need to establish: what your goals are, who your readers are, and how you can achieve your goal.

    • Determine your ultimate goal
      Outline your objectives as an author and identify which ones align with your values and passion. Your objectives can help you determine what to focus on and what you need to do next.
    • Define your target readers
      Your work will resonate with some readers more than others. Identifying the right readers starts with recognizing their interests and motivations. In the end, this will help you communicate with them better and highlight your brand to them.
    • Think about your next steps
      Where do you envision your brand to go next? Consider what circles or industries your work might appeal to. Might it have the potential to evolve into something bigger, like a film or a TV series?
  3. Establish your brand voice and image
    In order to build a strong author brand, it’s important to be consistent in how you present yourself. Take the time to think this through and to set guidelines.

    • Develop a strong visual identity
      Plan the look and feel of your brand as an author—from your book cover to your marketing collaterals. This will help your readers identify you right away.
    • Be consistent in your writing style
      You don’t have to follow just one writing voice or tone, but as much as possible, people should recognize your writings when they read it.
  4. Promote your brand.
    It’s not enough to just build a strong brand, you’ll have to let others know about it as well. The next thing you should focus on is building brand awareness. Make connections and go where your target readers are for better brand exposure.

    • Create offline interactions
      Look for events—book festivals, workshops, even readings—that are related to your writing niche and find opportunities to build your network, meet your target readers, and learn from seasoned authors.
    • Create an online presence
      When it comes to increasing brand awareness, online interactions are just as important as personal ones. Use social media, participate in online forums, and create your own blog to reach your target readers and meet your fellow writers.
  5. Continue learning and evolving.
    Last but not the least, find time to improve your unique qualities to keep up with the ever-changing literary industry and make your mark as an author.

    • Connect with a mentor
      Mentors can give you valuable insights on how you can make the right decisions for your brand. Look for people who challenge you to be the best you that you can be.
    • Listen to your readers
      Take note of what people are saying and how they react so that you can find out which aspects of your author brand can still be refined.

Ready to test your brand out? Make sure that you have a published book in hand when you do so. If you need help, we’ll be happy to complete the next step with you: publishing your book.

Get in touch with us today to find out how we can help you get published. Contact us at 0800 056 3182.

Sources:

Well-Storied, 'How to Build Your Author Brand'
The Book Designer, 'How To Build Your Author Brand From Scratch'
Your Writer Platform, 'Discover and Build Your Author Brand'
QuickSprout, 'The Complete Guide to Building Your Personal Brand'
The Writer’s Workshop, 'The Three Key Steps to Building Your Author Brand'

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