One question that is heard these days around the writing circuit is, “What is your brand?”
At first I felt the question needed a question from me. “Brand? My shoes?” Maybe they recognized the clothing I wore, maybe they just were dying to have a pair of jeans like those I wore, or maybe even they admired a piece of jewelry. No…these days I hear more about branding even though I had always felt it was more obvious what type writer was, well, what.
I know one writer whose brand is vampires. She writes romances based in the world of vampires and sorcery. That’s cool. Another writer I know is marketing to young adult readers. She writes books of romances mainly between couples in their really early twenties. I’ve even seen some young adult romances with characters in their late teens. And yes, I know authors who love to write erotic romances as well.
Brands are definitely important, I suppose, if you meet a group of writers and want to establish exactly what each author writes. Do they write Regency, Victorian, Westerns, contemporary? Do they write about vampires or zombies, do they write about high society Regency couples or modern couples in middle class America? Perhaps they write strictly about a certain part of the country or a certain sub-genre. Maybe their work is sweet, perhaps it is a bit spicy…perhaps it is incredibly erotic.
I’d grouped writers into categories most of my life…never realizing I was actually branding them in my head. But, to be honest, knowing the brand you represent and the way you market your books based on that knowledge gives you an idea of what you will do once your book is ready for the public. At conferences I’ve seen authors wearing clothing that defines their work…many are often in character for dinners or events. Victorian dresses, vampire teeth, boas or supernatural characters are not that unusual. It definitely shows me what books these authors write. I love how easily I recognize their brands!
Yes, I am beginning to see the way branding works for writers. As in any other profession…it is good to know how to market your work and to whom. By identifying your specific brand you are able to reach the right demographic for your book.
I’m still learning about how to build my brand…
What is yours?