The WHY – Part 1: Why does your brand have to exist?


As you create your author brand, there are several questions that need to be asked, thus a twelve week series starting today that looks at the three most important questions to ask, and the sub-categories needed for you to understand what you are creating, how you’ll be executing it all, but first we have to dive into the core question of why?

The biggest question you have to ask yourself as a writer is “Why does my brand have to exist?” If you cannot answer this, then you will have no foundation to build the rest of your platform upon. Most advertising campaigns start with “What?” As in, “What are we creating?” However, many find it more important to first ask “Why?”

The reason being is that if you understand why this product needs to exist, then you can fill in the rest of the answers from there. So why does your brand have to exist in the market? What need, or want, is being fulfilled by you promoting your work? If there isn’t a reason other than “because I wrote a book,” then you’ll likely become what I call a spark in the middle of a bonfire. Sure, it may make an impact, but it will be so insignificant that in the grand scheme, the fact that you added your spark to a massive wildfire won’t matter.

This goes back to our conversation about Blue Ocean Strategy, creating uncontested space. If you can answer why your brand has to exist, then you’ll likely find the unique strategy to your marketing that will allow you to stand out.

But until you can answer this fundamental question, the likelihood of you standing out in a slush pile is unlikely. You’ll be lost amongst the shuffle because agents, editors, publishers, readers, your audience won’t have a reason to care.

For a specific example, my brand of The Writer’s Conquest has to exist merely to help writers and creative artists market themselves. All too often they believe if they write good material, it will all work out. That’s fundamentally not true. I have no intention of The Writer’s Conquest making much money, it is informational and to raise awareness utilizing my existing knowledge and expertise by working in an advertising agency and holding an MBA in Marketing.

It is part of the larger goal of “Instill Hope,” that exists because I believe entertainment can still change lives. However, The Writer’s Conquest exists to help creative types because there is a need. That is why my brand of TWC has to exist. It’s simple, it’s not complex, and that’s the point. It shouldn’t take you five minutes to explain, it should be an elevator pitch at best. So why does your author brand have to exist?

Chime in with the comments section. The conversation’s always live on Twitter @ThomasAFowler, use the hash-tag #WritersConquest. As always, keep checking my official website for the latest updates. Thanks so much for taking on the Writer’s Conquest.

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10 comments

  1. Sort of like battling the “if you build it, they will come” temptation. If you start with answering why initially (as you suggest) it will save you from lots of frustration down the road.

    • Precisely. Sure everyone wants to get to decorating their new home, but first you need a foundation that’s right for the environment you’ll be living in. Thank you so much for the comment and feedback, hope this series helps.

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