Friday, April 19, 2013

Your Marketing Voice (Platform Persona)

I'm in total prep mode right now getting ready for the May promotion challenge (better name and more details to come), so I was struggling to come up with a topic. I was procrastinating while attempting to look productive by taking a look at my blog stats. I noticed that the most common search term people use to find me is Voice. Who knew procrastination would actual help?



Because here's the deal. You know that voice is critical in your manuscript. You've also heard that voice in your query/proposal is a great touch (though not as critical). But I rarely hear about the voice of our marketing efforts.

So just in case there's any confusion, let me make it clear. You need to have voice in your marketing efforts. Great, now we're all on the same page. Go about your business.

Before you start throwing rotten tomatoes, I guess I should explain. No seriously, put down the moldy fruit. It's going to be okay.

We all have a voice (call it style if that makes it easier to breathe) whether we know it or not. You might be a down to business kinda person. You could be a joker, the personal life sharer, the mysteriously anonymous, or a strange eclectic mix of them all. Consider it your platform persona (oh, I like it).

Just like with your writing, it's critical that your voice or PP (platform persona, it's the new thing and I'm going to make it happen) needs to match your product and your audience. If you write non-fiction business books, you'll probably want to take on a more formal PP. I say probably, because what if you writer humorous non-fiction business books targeted toward middle managers who are tired of reading business books. If that's the case then you'll probably want to be more irreverent, while maintaining the aura of "I'm an expert".

If you write MG horror then you'll have a completely different PP. No matter how old I get RL Stine will always be a creepy guy to me and that's a good thing. That's who he needs to be. If he ran around posting pictures of rainbow unicorns on his website, people would have a hard time taking him serious as a horror writer.

I'm not suggesting we need to become the genre we write in. I am saying that we need to be aware of our PP and make sure it meets the two C's: Content driven and Consistent. In other words, let what you write be a factor in your persona. Not the only factor, but A factor. And whatever you pick, be consistent in how you present yourself. That's not to say if you have a humorous PP, you can't write a serious blog post. But if you do, you need to acknowledge the shift with your readers and let them know why you're temporarily changing gears.

So let's hear it. What's your PP? How did you decide?


10 comments:

  1. I love "PP"! I guess my voice is brevity plus humor as I feel short, amusing things will attract readers, even though I'm officially a Horror writer...

    I try hard to work on Content and Consistency - and it's more important than ever considering I just announced on my blog that I signed with an agent!

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  2. Interesting...This is very helpful information. I never would have guessed that people searched on Voice so much.

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  3. What timing for this post! I'm branching out into romance and I'll be using a pen name because my paranormal novels are on the darker side and the two personas just don't mix.

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  4. I like it. I love video games and fantasy and I think that shows in my blog. Although, I do confuse my non gamers sometimes, but they never seem to mind.

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  5. I try to come across as supportive and fun. I write for teens, but I recognize most of by blog readers and twitter followers are folks who love books (esp. YA) and I just want to be seen as someone in love with that genre.

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  6. Ditto. I'm experimenting with a new genre too, and I would def use a pen name for that.

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  7. Well, this is not fair. I was totally going to ask you what my voice was b/c I wanted to know what you thought, but then you asked me first. AND I HAVE NO CLUE!!!!

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  8. I never thought about my voice for marketing. Thanks for making me aware of the PP!

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