Marketing firms, economics departments in universities, and many high-end retailers spend a lot of time thinking about how to build brand loyalty. As I researched this piece, I found articles that promised 11 ways to build brand loyalty! 15 ways to build brand loyalty! 5 ways to build brand loyalty! And so on. Most of these ways are completely different from each other, and have little to do with each. Most of the people writing about brand loyalty online are doing so to get you to hire them to build your brand. Ignore all that. I’m going to.
Instead, I’m going to focus on a few ways that show up in all of the articles, and then I’ll tailor those ways to writers.
Brand loyalty—name loyalty—is something that we writers desire, but it’s not something that we can simply will into being. And it certainly doesn’t come about by bribing your reader.
Brand Identity is how you want customers to perceive your brand. Right now, remember, we’re dealing with building the brand. So you get to think about how you want that brand to be perceived. You need to imagine your target as you develop your brand identity. What do you want your target audience to think about your brand?
Let’s start wide with the overall steps to building a brand identity, and then I’ll refine for writers.
When I do marketing posts, they tend to freak my loyal readers out. Sometimes, the posts freak me out too. What writers want from marketing blogs are simple suggestions that boil down to this: Do x, y, and z, and you’ll get these fantastic results! Only it doesn’t work that way. Or rather, it doesn’t work that way for everyone. I’m writing this on Sunday, […]
I’ve been talking to myself lately. Actually, I’ve been talking back to podcasts, vlogs, and emails. Ever since I said I would be doing a series on branding, I’ve gotten links to great branding tips. (Please, keep them coming.) Every single link I received that dealt with branding from a writer’s perspective talked about cover branding. Lots of great information in each and every one […]
Over the weekend, I headed to traditional publishers’ websites and look at their paranormal romance covers only to discover…that the damn books are branded like urban fantasy or like an E.L. James knockoff or like a cookbook or travelogue. All of this points out a huge problem in the paranormal romance genre. There’s nothing that screams modern paranormal romance. Believe me when I tell you that readers look for such things.
In the past two weeks, I wrote two year-in-review posts, “What Traditional Publishing Learned in 2014,” and “Things Indie Writers Learned in 2014.” Those two posts came after I started this one. I’ve been writing bits of this one off and on since October, as the year has become clearer in my brain. Usually, I do a year-end analysis just for me, and there’s a […]
WMG Publishing has Discoverability, the book based on the posts I was writing from November to April, on the schedule for the fall of 2014, which meant I had to get off my butt and assemble those posts into something coherent. I write the pieces, and then I build the bridges to hold them together. This post is one of those bridges…