Since publishing my poetry collection Words of Faith, I’ve learnt quite a bit about the different ways of marketing and building your brand as an author, writer or poet. I’ve worked professionally in marketing for almost two years so I’ve picked up some interesting insights on the different ways businesses market and promote their offering to audiences.
Despite this, marketing and brand building activities are some things I’ve found most difficult in the past. At times I didn’t know where or how to get started. I didn’t always understand the importance of consistency with content and I struggled to find fresh ideas that would grow my audience. Nonetheless, I kept on trying and researched how other authors and poets built their brands successfully.
How to market your poetry and build a brand
If you’re a poet, blogger, playwright, author or anything in between and are keen on pushing your work, it is important that you start building a brand and marketing your projects towards your target audience.
In this post I'll be sharing a few marketing tips that I’ve discovered which can help. This is more specific for poets looking to market their poems or poetry collections. However, I believe all writers can benefit and learn something applicable to marketing their craft.
If you’re just getting started as a poet and want to build your brand, have a read of these top tips and I hope you pick up some new marketing and brand building tactics.
Know Your Target Audience
The first thing to do which will influence all of your marketing activity is to identify, know and understand your target audience for your poetry and brand. This will save time and effort and prevent you from creating campaigns and content that readers are not interested in.
Your target audience will be the group of readers you want to reach with your work. It is your niche. Some poets have broad target audiences whilst others have a very small and specific group of readers they are targeting.
To start identifying your target audience, look at your poetry (or other body of work) and determine who you wrote it for. Determine why it is most applicable for them and understand why it would benefit them. Think of things such as age, gender, ethnicity and interests.
It is more difficult to reach everybody, so if you have a specific group of readers that you are targeting, it will be easier to reach and influence them.
Once you know who you are targeting, the next step is to understand what that audience likes and engages with. Research what is consistently popular and currently trending and keep updated. Knowing this will help to tailor your content based on what your audience is actively interested in.
Perform at Open Mic and Other Events
Poetry is not only written to be read, but to be performed!
For poets interested in marketing their poetry, one of the most beneficial tips I can give is to attend and perform at local poetry, open mic and other events that are happening. Not only does this push your poems in front of an audience, but it gives you invaluable opportunities to meet, network and collaborate with other poets and artists.
Start locally and find out what poetry events are happening near you. Take some supportive friends with you and perform as much as you can! Speak with other performers, audience members and even the event organisers to build good networking relationships.
If you have a published poetry collection then you can work on getting a stand at book fairs, exhibitions or community events where you can present and sell your poetry books!
Do this regularly and you’ll see how beneficial it will be to your brand as a writer.
Create a Presence on Social Media
Another way to build your brand as a poet is to have a strong online social media presence. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and so many more – capitalise on them!
In this day of instapoets and hashtags, having some form of social media will help get your content out to newer audiences. There are so many platforms with so many people using them daily, it’s be unwise not to take advantage of them.
If you’re not social media savvy, you can start by using one specific platform and being consistent with sharing your content on there. Follow and engage with others who are interested in the same things as you are and don’t be ashamed to promote your work!
Create videos, images, engaging visuals and graphics. Experiment with your content and keep it consistent!
For me, my favourite platform to promote my poetry book on is Instagram. (Instapoets are big guys, and everybody loves an inspirational quote/poem picture.) I found it easier to share images of my book consistently and also engage with my audience using stories and polls. Using targeted hashtags also helps different readers to find your work based on what they are searching for.
Publish Your Poetry in Different Ways
If you have a collection of poetry you can consider publishing your work in a poetry book to gain more readers. A poetry book can be published in paperback/print, as an e-book or even as an audio book! Using these different methods will reach different audience members and allow them to engage with your work in their most suited way.
Besides publishing your own poetry book, you can submit your work to different magazines, blogs and anthologies. This way, you’ll be reaching an established audience with your work!
Each year, there are many competitions held for poets and other writers and you can use this to your advantage.
Research what organisations are running competitions and create work specifically for the competition. Even if you don’t win, it’ll be great experience putting your work out there for others to review it.
No matter how small you think your brand and audience is, keep on writing. Keep on creating beautiful, meaningful content and I assure you; it’ll get to a point where your work sells itself. It will speak loudly for you and get in front of the right readers.
Keep writing, keep sharing and keep building. Marketing can be hard, tedious and time-consuming but it will always surely be worth it in the end!
Thank you for reading this post guys and I hope it has been helpful! These are just some simple tips to help poets that are just getting started and as you continue on your journey, I’m sure you’ll learn so many more techniques that work for you along the way.
Whether you’re a poet, playwright, blogger or any other type of writer or artist. I hope you’ve picked up some new tips or learnt the importance of old tricks when it comes to marketing and building your brand. If you need any more specific advice or suggestions, feel free to leave a comment below and let’s continue to help each other grow...
- Faithful xoxo
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