Basic Marketing Tips for Authors (No.9)

Taglines. Boiling yourself, your series, your book, really anything to a bite-size, memorable morsel is difficult for most writers. We like all the words, the wordier the better. Just ask us how much we enjoy writing back-cover blurbs, query letters or the dreaded synopsis.  Since we’re talking specifically about author marketing, we’ll focus on a tagline just for you, the amazing author of amazing books.

Jami Gold has a good article on her blog, where she talks taglines. “I’d recommend using an author tagline on our websites or blogs. Then we’re branding ourselves, and we’re less likely to change ourselves than our blogging focus. In addition, author taglines can be used everywhere to build name recognition.” She goes on to say your tagline should include the WHO (you) and the WHY (why does the audience care?). I know lots of authors who tagline themselves along genre lines, which gets sticky if you suddenly get an idea outside those confines. So, unless you know without a shadow of a doubt you’ll always write within a certain box, this isn’t the way to go.

Instead, look deeper. Are there common themes in your writing? There are in mine. Are there certain character traits you gravitate toward when you write? I do. Make a list of as many of these things as you can–you should have at least ten. Here’s where I confess I don’t have a tagline. This is an area in which I struggle. Finding a slogan to address an entire human being? Insert eye roll here. BUT I’m committed to finding my tagline along with you because I believe it’s a valuable piece of marketing–and it’s not “an entire human being,” it’s about the writer, which is only a slice of a whole human being.

When you find one you either like or can live with, this should then go onto your website, your social media, your newsletter…you get the point. Maybe look for images that synch up with the tagline, that sort of thing.

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