How to blog strategically to build your brand as a writer, with Lisa Richardson<br />http://lisarichardsonbylines.com<br />One Week Job<br />The Happiness Project<br />How to be Alone<br />Julie and Julia : My Year of Cooking Dangerously<br />The Fire Starter Sessions<br />Me! Me! Me! Build social media savvy for wanton self-promotion.<br />
What do these people have in common?<br />Danielle LaPorte, creator of White Hot Truth, business consultant, author of The Fire Starter Sessions: A Digital Experience for Entrepreneurs<br />Gretchen Rubin, best-selling author of The Happiness Project<br />Sean Aiken, author of The One Week Job Project<br />Julie Powell, author of Julie & Julia, and Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat and Obsession<br />Tanya Davis, spoken work poet, How to Be Alone<br />JB MacKinnon and Alisa Smith, co-authors of The 100 Mile Diet<br />
A:<br />They’re writers who used social media tools (blogs, online columns, youtube videos, facebook, twitter) to promote their work, build their brand, and become household names. <br />Until How to be Alone went viral, (1,789,790 views) who had heard of spoken word artist Tanya Davis? <br />
WTF is social media?<br />Not a stupid question. Take your crash course here. <br />SOCIAL MEDIA IS DEMOCRATIZING COMMUNICATIONS<br />“Technology is shifting the power away from the editors, the publishers, the establishment, the media elite. Now it’s the people who are in control.” Rupert Murdoch<br />Bottom line: it’s a toolbox of free online applications that allow you to engage socially, build community, connect with like-minded folk and self-publish.<br />
The Prosecution: Social Media stands accused of - <br />Causing Procrastination – you feel like you’re getting stuff done, but you’re not actually writing a novel tweet by tweet<br />Exacerbating ADHD – multiple streams of input and output make it hard to sustain the quality of attention and focus you need to read and write long-form<br />Invading Privacy – apparently it doesn’t exist anyway, but it does turn a private sphere (your notebook/office/headspace) into potentially incriminating public output<br />Misleading ROI – effectiveness is not easy to measure<br />
In its Defence:why social media is a good tool in a writers arsenal<br />Establish your credentials for free.<br />PRACTICE.<br />Build a brand, a beat, an audience.<br />
Guy Kawasaki says the benefits of blogging are:<br />Personal – as an outlet for expression and creativity<br />Business – as a fast and free marketing and communications weapon <br />Think “book” not “diary”. A blog is a product. Not your spontaneous thoughts and feelings. <br />
The Golden Rule of Blogging:<br />“I’m…pretty sure I puked that. But when the fuck did I eat carrots?” http://hungoverowls.tumblr.com/<br />
The Golden Rule of Blogging:VOMITING IS SOMETHING YOU SHOULD DO IN PRIVATE.<br />Be strategic. Be selective. Curate your content. You don’t want a digital tattoo that’s going to be difficult and expensive to erase.<br />Blog is just another delivery method for content, like a book. The story is what counts. So develop your craft.<br />Blog should serve your ultimate goal… which is what?<br />
“Connect, don’t network.”<br />“It’s much more important to write than to blog, so only blog if it makes you happy and if you have something to say.” Neil Gaiman<br />Set your writing goals first, then work out how social media tools can support them.<br />Seth Godin: “Power is going to continue to accrue to authors with direct connections to readers.”<br />An A-list writer is equal parts craftsperson and brand.<br />
Strategic thinking…<br />1. Use your own name. You are building a brand.<br />2. Choose the publishing platforms that suit your style and your work: facebook, twitter, blog, vimeo, youtube, flickr, tumblr etc. You are becoming a publisher.<br />3. Build relationships. You are building a community. You need a personal relationship with the first 1000 members on your website.<br />4. Maintain the integrity of your content. What is your brand? Your voice? Your schtick? Your beat?<br />5. Commit to a practice of writing and publishing that you can maintain. <br />
Ask the same questions that marketers ask a client:<br />What do you stand for? What makes you awesome? What 3 words would people use to describe your personality as a writer?<br />Who are you talking to? Who is your target? Who’s going to read this?<br />What’s your tone? What ground rules will you set?<br />What’s your beat? What are you an expert in? How will there be thematic cohesion in your blog?<br />Who are your competitors? Check out what they’re doing, for best practice, and become part of each other’s community.<br />
Best Practices: <br />Starting Today: Poems for the First 100 Days<br />Mila’s Daydreams<br />Clean Bin Project<br />Susan Orlean@susanorlean (84,000+ followers)<br />Annabel Lyon “The Golden Mean”<br />Wayne Grady and MerilynSimonds“Breakfast at the Exit Café”<br />
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