Build a Powerful Platform with a Simple Brand Audit

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January 2012
by Tanya Hall

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Fundamentally, a book is a consumer product; and, as we well know in our industry, having a standout product is no guarantee of success. Book sales are predominantly author-driven.

According to Verso Digital’s 2009 Survey of Book-Buying Behaviors, author reputation is the most important factor in a book-purchase decision, followed by personal recommendation and price. This is why we hear so much talk about the author platform.

An author’s platform provides a book’s brand power, and while some platforms are built through a series of happy accidents, most are quite carefully planned.

The good news is that any publisher and any author can lay the groundwork for a strategically built platform through a simple brand audit.

Companies of many kinds use brand audits to analyze the effectiveness of their branding and marketing efforts, to identify brand goals to pursue, to expose gaps between how a company sees its brand and how consumers see it, and to get everyone on the same proverbial page about messaging.

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