For 15 years I have been telling clients – mostly non-profit organizations – how to communicate their ‘brand’ or ‘message’ online. So, when John entered the revision, promotion, marketing phase of his latest book Dodging and Burning, I made him think through some things about John Copenhaver the BRAND and his assets within this brand and how they should be communicated to those that do not know him.
What are his expectations for his site and on the ‘marketing’ side of writing a book and getting it published? What is his message?
John captured it perfectly in his blog post “Website in sight”:
1. Your site should capture who YOU are, not your product(s).
2. Talk about what your products are.
3. Address your audience, as broad as it may be, from readers to agents to editors and publishers.
4. Make it YOUR niche, your home on this world-wide-web.
The first thing that we had to do for John was start this blog – Talking the Walk – as a way to initially reach out to the world and include all the visitors/readers on his journey. By doing so, you the reader, writer, editor, publisher are included in all steps along the way and each visit will strengthen your loyalty to his brand. You will want to buy the John Copenhaver PRODUCT – the book. Do you think Perez Hilton’s book would have sold more than one copy had it not been for his blog? If you are a writer hoping to be published one day, you should be blogging about the experience, from a natural perspective – not a ‘I hope I can publish my blog as a book one day’ – you must keep it real.
Second, we are working at creating a larger web site for John with his own URL. If you do not ‘own’ your own name as a URL you should immediately get that even if you do not have a site or web presence in the works. It’s important that you secure your own name because I can guarantee that there is more than one of you out there. You’d hate to end up with http://www.ilovekitties.com or something that NOBODY will remember. You should also start thinking about your own logo or mark that you can use on printed collateral so it rises above, and gets noticed over the others. John’s logo is included in his blog post.
Remember YOU are the BRAND and it’s up to YOU to communicate what your brand has to offer.
In the coming weeks, I’ll be guest-blogging on this site with different tips and tricks to promote yourself online. John and I are working on many different approaches to promoting his book all of which we will share and hope to start a dialog on what works and what doesn’t. I will also point you in the direction of free tools and other free or near-free services that you can take advantage of to begin your own web presence. John and I will be Talking the Walk and utilizing everything we discuss here.
If you have any questions or insights you would like to share, please do so!