It’s never too early to start building your author platform and marketing base. This week, we’ll do a deep dive into what an author platform is and how to use it.
What is an Author Platform?
An author platform brands the author, NOT the book. Set up your social media accounts and fan pages under your author name instead of your book or series name. It will save you from trying to manage multiple accounts or pages, or from being difficult to find.
An author platform presents you as an expert in your field. Many writers balk at this because most of us feel we fit the meme of an author knowing a little about everything but is a master of nothing. The truth is, you are the expert of your book and your characters. Start there and expand your expertise.
An author platform is also a means through which to share your message with your target audience. The more fans you accumulate, the more quickly and easily you can disseminate information about you and your books to an interested audience.
An author platform tells readers what makes your work unique. Your platform should reflect your personality and the aspects of your writing that set you apart from other writers.
An author platform implies a promise of quality. Always make sure you are putting out quality products, images, information, etc. Present yourself online as a professional and release professional quality work.
An author platform says something about you as an author. What keeps you writing? What fills your spare time (if you can find any)? Share more than just your books. Share your writing process and experiences in publishing. Remember that you’re building a community with your platform, not just a customer base.
What does an Author Platform do?
It gives authors an opportunity to shows their personality to their readers. In today’s interconnected world, readers want to know their favorite writers. It adds to their reading experience to have some insight into who wrote the book.
It fosters relationships with readers, turning casual fans into super fans who will help promote you and your work. Friendships are also developed which can help authors feel more engaged with the reading community.
It establishes expertise as an author, writer, and whatever other areas of knowledge you have to share. If you write police procedurals, share some of your research. If you write a character who likes to cook, share recipes. Create a world for readers to explore with you.
It builds communication with readers and opens up opportunities for feedback, help, and encouragement. Many writers get bogged down with deadlines, stuck in the middle of a manuscript, or overwhelmed by life. Open up a dialogue with readers.
It creates community with other writers and with readers. Writing can be a lonely endeavor. Use your platform to gather similarly minded book lovers to talk to and engage with.
It builds visibility and extends reach. The more you build your author platform, the more eyes you will have on your books. Engage regularly to encourage readers to do the same. The more welcome a person feels in a group, the more likely they are to invite others to join or talk about how much they enjoy participating.