Monday, January 30, 2012

Claim Your Name - Author Self Branding And Book Promotion For Online Success Ecourse Day 9

In the last segment we talked about establishing your identity as an author. In this segment we are going to about using the media to get more exposure for your brand and your books.

Media is extremely important when branding a business. There are many different outlets and they can be used in many different ways to your advantage and even for damage control. Proper branding means staying tight with the media as your friend. Some say to keep your friends close and your enemies closer and this is true with the media. They can make you very popular or ruin you but nothing really in between. You need the media on your side at all times.

Let's begin with the local media.

There are many different local media outlets that you might consider using when you are looking to brand your name as an author or your books. You can use local newspapers to announce sales, events, and public appearances. Local television stations are useful for interviews and news segments--when you have something newsworthy to report.

Other methods of local media may be local websites for town members. Some towns have a site for the community where people can post things like classified ads and other public notices and promotional items. They are free sites and sometimes used more often than the newspapers because of this.

You could also write letters to the editor. These can offer your opinion on an segment or a response to previous editorial coverage that supports or offers a different point of view. Letters should be short, normally two or three paragraphs long, using statistics, reasoning and substantiated claims rather than impassioned statements. Letters to the editor should be directed to the editorial department. 

Another way you can use the media to your advantage is to write your own articles and distribute them to the press. This can be very beneficial. If the press needs to fill additional space in their paper they may use them.

Sending articles to the press is free. The will not charge you to use them, nor will they pay you for them.  The same is almost always going to be true for online media as well.  However, if there is a traditionally published magazine that would benefit from an article featuring your genre, you get the benefit of additional promotion and payment for the article. Article writing can be a very beneficial way to advertise you as an author and your books.

Volunteering to speak is another great way to get media attention.

Volunteering to speak for area organizations, such as civic and service clubs, chambers of commerce, schools and social organizations, can expand your audience and lead to additional media exposure. After you secure a speaking engagement, alert the media by news release or media alert depending on the time frame. Make sure you include why the lecture may interest the public, when, where and for whom it is intended and your level of expertise on the subject.

Just be sure to choose your speaking engagements wisely. In the last segment we talked about brand prospecting and public relations. In this segment we are going to talk about establishing your company's identity.

Establishing your identity is very important when you are fighting for a place in a market or a certain niche. You may know exactly who you are but you need to get your name out there and for people to be aware of your existence. There are many ways you can establish an identity in a local community or on a global scale.

Let's start by talking about making donations.

Donations are always good when it comes to establishing an identity around your local community and anywhere else. This gives you good exposure and media exposure. When customers see your name as a donor, not only does it look good for you but it gets your name out there permanently.  The online version of this would be participating in giveaways and other promotional events, particularly those that are formed to draw attention to or raise funds for charitable causes of worth.

This part of the branding process is important because it helps an author build credibility and trust with the customers in the market.

Now, let's talk about giving away free information.

In the online world where people are accustomed to receiving the written word for free--giveaways are a necessity!  However, there are things that you can give away for free without constantly giving away the farm. So give away free samples in the form of book chapters, informational and educational blog posts, mini books on complimentary topics in your genre. 

Get your brand to travel.

Another thing you can do is get people to wear your brand. You can put your logo, name or book cover on various items of clothing, such as T-shirts, hats, tote bags, scarves and more. Then use the clothing as gifts or for door prizes at speaking engagements or other events. This can be a costly form of promotion for the average author; but especially if you have established a personal connection with the recipient they will willingly use it to help promote your name. In this way, your name could go to more places that you ever imagined.

Make sure you look for your next segment soon. We will be talking about using the media to get more exposure for your brand.

Smiles and Good Fortune,
Teresa Thomas Bohannon

It is not wealth one asks for, but just enough to preserve one’s
dignity, to work unhampered, to be generous, frank and independent.
– W. Somerset Maugham (1874 - 1965) Of Human Bondage, 1915

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