My daughter is a senior in high school. This means that we are in the process of visiting colleges and taking tours in an effort to find a good school match. Recently, at one college we were touring, we sat in a seminar conducted by the university’s Career Center.
As I listened to the Director of the Career Center talk to prospective students, I heard phrases like:
- “Brand yourself”
- “Branded candidate”
These statements caught my attention. Branding is no longer just a term that is applied to companies and products. It is now a term that is also used for anyone seeking to secure a position, whether that be in the job world, being admitted to a university, in politics, or on social media.
The Director of the Career Center went on to talk about how employers are not necessarily concerned about a student’s major; they are more concerned about motivated candidates. He stated that motivated candidates give prospective employers and graduate schools the following two messages:
- This is who I am.
- This is what I can do for you.
Sound familiar? It should. This is the same message that you, an author, should be sending.
Just like college graduates, authors must also brand themselves. You must tell your prospective readers:
- This is who I am.
- This is what my book can do for you.
Just as employers want to know what they will get from a college graduate if they hire him or her, readers want to know what they will get from you, the author, in your book if they purchase and read it.
The Director of this university’s Career Center went on to talk about how a student’s brand is the image they present to prospective employers and schools. If they want to be seen as a serious student, then their social media posts should not show them partying and skipping classes.
The same is true for authors. Your brand or image needs to be consistent. For example, if you have written a book on prayer, then the image you present on social media to the public and your potential readers should be one of someone who believes in and is involved in prayer on a regular basis. If you were to begin talking about “luck” or “fate” in your social media posts, you would not be representing your brand—instead you would be confusing people.
When releasing a new book, be sure that you have branded your book and answered the two questions above. If you want to learn more about Branding a Book, check out my on-demand seminar on “Branding Your Book.”
This and my other on-demand seminars are free for Members of Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA), but I have also made them available for a reasonable fee for everyone to view.
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