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Build Your Author Brand in 5 Easy Steps

According to many publishing insiders, 2012 is set to be the year of the e-book. Is your author brand strong enough to get you published? If you have to ask yourself that question, the answer is probably no.

When you start building your brand, you have an idea of what you want to be known for. But what you want to be known for might be what you end up being known for. It’s important to know your audience so you can tailor your message to them. John Locke is a great example someone who knows exactly what his audience wants.

Here are five incredibly easy ways to build your author brand. Find the ones that work for you and start using them.

1. LinkedIn

LinkedIn is often overlooked by writers and that’s a pity. There are four reasons why every author should use LinkedIn. One of the reasons not listed is LinkedIn Answers, an emerging branding tool for professionals. You can use LinkedIn answers to field questions that fall in line with your author brand. It will build your credibility and increase your audience.

What categories could you sign up for?

2. Google+

social media icons

There are 3 Google+ features that every author needs know about. Do you know what they are? The Hang-Out feature is a powerful tool in building your author brand. You can now hold virtual events, inviting as many viewers as you want. If you are a historical novelist, you could interview an expert about the time period your latest book is set in. Doing interviews via Google+ is a win-win situation as both you and your interviewee are inviting your friends to join in.

How do you use Google+ to engage your audience?

3. Facebook Pages

There are 800 million people on Facebook. Author Pages help you stand out from the crowd. It’s important to pick the right Facebook page title when you are naming your page. After you have 100 fans, you can’t change it. Having a public page means that you can keep your private life, well, private. You can also personalize your public pages so friends can sign up for your newsletter, receive exclusive offers on your books, and post their “fan favorites” about your book.

How often do you use Facebook to engage your fans?

4. Twitter

Think of Twitter as public text-messaging. It’s also one of my personal favorite social networks. Twitter lowers the social barriers making it easy to connect with anyone – educators, politicians, actors, artists, and yes, authors. (Guess who else is on Twitter? @AuthorMedia) Your readers want to connect with you. They are already talking about your author brand on there so it’s time you join the conversation.

Who do you interact with on Twitter?

5. Newsletters

Newletter

Newsletter are where you can get even more creative with your readers. If a blog is like holding a conversation in your living room, think of a newsletter as being invited over to your friend’s house. Share exclusive updates, offers, and interviews. And be polite! It can’t be all about you. Give your reader the content they want. If you need ideas, read 8 Elements of Effective Author Newsletters

Which newsletters do you read?

If you are overwhelmed by building your brand, we offer social media coaching. In just a few hours, we will transform your questions into answers and a personalized social media plan. Our initial consultations are always free.

 

What other ways can you build you author brand? Let us know in the comment box!

About Caitlin Muir

Caitlin Muir knows the power of social media first hand. She's on the editorial team of The Social Media Club, which connects media makers from around the world to promote media literacy, industry standards, and ethical behavior. She blogs about faith, love, and social media at CaitlinMuir.com.

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10 Responses to Build Your Author Brand in 5 Easy Steps

  1. Just thought I’d let you know that you posted Google+ twice in the list, and therefore have two #1s… :) Thanks for the tips, by the way. :)

  2. haha…and then you just fixed it. ;)

    • Caitlin Muir #

      Never underestimate the power of taking a second glance before you hit the “publish” button. Oh Mondays!

      • Always looking for those marketing inspirations–thank you! Google +, though…still not worth the time! I hadn’t tackled Linked-in, but will go for that too. I have a book website, but not a book blog as such; I blog for a local “Patch” about a variety of issues which gets more notice than a book blog–and has “author of ‘To See the Sky: Vignettes of Grace'” on every post! And PLEASE, bloggers, chek that speling! Seriously, I’ve stopped reading posts and blogs that were filled with typos and run-on sentences! At least be diligent and professional; it will win you friends and fans!

        Please do check out: http://www.judithhugg.tateauthor.com for “TO SEE THE SKY.” Spiritual musings with some humor! Thanks!

  3. Good advice! I need to update linkedin and figure it out. Google+ doesn’t seem to be very active. I don’t know if that will change. A lot of my traffic comes from StumbleUpon anymore which is nice :)

    Blessings,
    Mel
    Please feel free to stop by: Trailing After God

    • Caitlin Muir #

      The trick is to give people a reason to use Google+. I think the collaboration possibilities will help it take off with the creative set. The built in SEO boosters don’t hurt either.

      StumbleUpon is a site I need to spend more time on. Good tip!

  4. Shelley Jerige #

    Thanks for the tips! Launching a writers blog in2012. Doing content analysis of existing blogs. Will keep your advice in mind as we build strategic plan. S

    • Caitlin Muir #

      How exciting!

  5. John Condliffe #

    Loved the advice will keep on reading . Thanks

  6. Need to do 1 and 5. Need to spend more time on google+,however those circles drive me mad…but after I get the hang of it,sure they won’t :) Have stumble upon,tumblr,etc on my list of to do as well.

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