BRANDING is just as important for small businesses as it is for big names. So how does an author develop their own brand identity? My approach so far is the subject of this blog chapter.
I write a thriller series featuring a range of characters; but it is The Phoenix who is the main male protagonist in most of the stories. That brand character promotes my books, my website, and my social media presence and I want it to connect with my readers. I want a ‘look’ that differentiates me in the market place from other thriller writers.
I am endeavouring to build long-term relationships with my readers. My updated website and a landing page for the subscription to my email listings is a new departure. I want to attract subscribers and then I plan to keep them. There won’t be any grandiose offerings that raise expectations and then result in broken promises. I want to create trust with honest branding and stick to my core values throughout.
My posts on Twitter and Facebook; blog chapters and newsletters from my website, will all give a consistent message to my readers. It will help reinforce that bond so subscribers are aware exactly what to expect from me. My PHOENIX CLUB must be just like the advert; you know, the one that says “It does exactly what it says on the tin.”
I’ve discovered very recently that not refreshing your messages on a regular basis is dangerous. Don’t repeat the same message over and over again, even if it was successful the first time. Not only do people ‘switch off’; people at Twitter ‘switch on’ and start believing you’re a robot, not a real person!
The main thing is getting the messages to work to build a comprehensive and recognizable presence. That presence needs to be distinctive. That’s why I opted for a ‘branded’ cover for all the books in the series. As a young man I read Penguin paperbacks ALL the time. The colours distinguished the genre. There were no elaborately designed images; but it worked and it was a spectacularly successful brand.
CHANGE is continuous however and I will have to adapt. When I do, I will need to be bold and perhaps try something ambitious. I won’t get anywhere by being a ‘shrinking violet’.
I have decided on a specific policy for the pricing of my books. The Olympus Project’ is FREE and will remain so; ‘Gold Silver and Bombs’ has been reduced to £0.99 and ‘Nothing Is Ever Forever’ launches at £1.99.
When ‘In The Lap Of The Gods’ is published in the Spring then I intend to promote sets of the series; offering more, rather than reducing prices further.
I am seriously considering making ‘Conception’ a title that could be given away FREE with every new reader of ‘The Olympus Project’. After all, the story behind the character who became The Phoenix is vital for understanding the motivation of the series.
This quote about THE FUTURE of branding is apposite:- “the future of branding is fluid and engaging; it respects your customers’ intelligence by not giving everything away up front. Generate some intrigue and allow them to unearth more about your brand for themselves. This is the way to foster ambassadors who revel in telling other people what they have discovered.”
A consistent image backed up with a consistent message; a consistent pricing mechanism that strives to give my readers value for money and stories that encourage people to ‘spread the word.’ That’s my brand.
Well, that’s my mission in 2016 sorted out! A Happy Christmas and a Prosperous New Year to you and yours.
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