• http://www.bookkus.com/ William Yatscoff

    I like the way you are presenting the idea of marketing first. Half of marketing is learning what your cuatomers want. Starting to get ideas first helps you learn how to hone your writing for your audience.

  • Kristen McLean

    Thanks, William. I’m glad you are enjoying it.

  • http://twitter.com/BookBuzzr Vikram Narayan

    Lots of great ideas here. Life is too short to write something nobody wants to read.

  • http://www.newmancom.com/ David Ratner

    Great piece Kristen.  I think Step 2 is crucial and one that often is not fleshed out enough in the brand building process.  Brands/people need to really understand how to define their USP (Unique Selling Proposition) which will ultimately make it easier for them to reach and add value to their targeted audience.
     

    • Kristen McLean

      Thanks, David. I think for years the idea of *marketing* has been seen as somehow cheapening the writing and the writer, but in the age of social media, marketing is really about authentic conversation, and no one can market more effective than the author themselves. I’m not sure what you guys are seeing over at Newman, but from my seat, I think most authors do have the sense that they’ve got to do *something*. Shaping that into a coherent and sustainable strategy that can live along with the writing is the imperative. 

  • http://twitter.com/annehill Anne Hill

    Very smart overview, Kristen. Somewhere in your graphic you need to have a rear-view mirror though—either on the horse or the cart, I haven’t figured out which. :) The point being that much of this process takes place in hindsight, even with the most savvy authors. 

    Sometimes the best way to learn the importance of building a brand and platform is to first launch a smaller project without a robust platform and see how well it fares. Analyzing the results can help authors hone in on their brand, their community, and how to play to their strengths in sustaining a social media presence—not to mention give them the motivation to keep at it for the requisite 12–18 months before launching again.

    • Kristen McLean

      Thanks, Anne. I totally agree. I’m a big fan of these short form platforms like WattPad and Byliner for that very reason. They seem t be doing a very good job of curating the content so readers can find it, and the reader communities around those platforms are very engaged. If I were testing a new concept, series, or spinoff, I’d use it.