Every aspiring author aspires to become a published author and expand their author brand far beyond national waters. The drive to grow in leaps in and bounds keeps the fire burning in the hearts of every creative, same as you.
Creating a brand for yourself as an author is important because it will provide the visibility boost needed to get discovered by others – readers, authors, publishers, and creatives alike.
Building progress as an aspiring author and gaining momentum in your space can be propelled through collaborations with others in the same niche as you or outside your niche.
This happens organically because it entails leveraging each other’s platforms and presenting yourself to them.
Asides from getting it right from the start as an aspiring creative and implementing the level-up strategy to gain momentum, understanding the need to create positive and engaging connections around your brand are the beginning of preparing yourself for collaborations and connections with others.
This could come naturally when others seek you out to collaborate with you on something or you take the bold steps towards approaching those whom you would respect and would want to be associated with their brand as well as have them associate with yours.
It’s a mutual relationship and also a win-win situation because it’s a way for your collaborator to widen their audience reach as well as you. It could happen in several ways, in different patterns, on various platforms, and with any caliber of person or persons.
Collaborating with others could be in form of a group project, a personal conversation, a co-host, a program, a post, a story, a write-up, a shout-out, a review, an interview, cross-promotion of literary works, co-authorship, email recommendations, a retweet, a re-post, and as many other ways, there could be.
The trick with this is to do some of these acts selflessly, especially the ones that cost nothing.
This helps you draw awareness to yourself and your brand which in turn sparks a conversation through which connection is built. More often, it’s the little unexpected things that draw the most attention to your brand.
As much as you want to be intentional with growing your brand as an aspiring author, the entire focus shouldn’t be on you alone because the saying “we’re lifted by lifting others” is golden and evergreen.
Take your time to evaluate what your brand represents, and what you aim to achieve with each connection, and then build your strategy from there.
It doesn’t have to be tasking, just little efforts here and there would go a long way to get interested eyeballs on your brand.
This doesn’t suggest you limit yourself within your circle, no, feel free to stretch beyond your circle and interact with known brands surrounding your niche or the writing industry in general within your nationality and beyond.
While elucidating the need for collaboration as a tool to grow your author brand, it is important to note some of the benefits you will enjoy from practicing this.
Great Brand Visibility:
Collaborating with others within your community ensures great visibility for your brand because it puts you in front of people who might be interested in your brand but have no idea you exist.
This also creates room for you to engage and interact with possible connections that you could work with, soon.
The opportunities that could emerge from having great visibility are limitless and worth the efforts that have been employed to put it out there.
Organic Brand Promotions:
Leveraging the audience of others through collaboration ensures organic promotions for your brand because you have access to free traffic flowing from your collaborator’s platform into yours, the same as yours into theirs.
It ensures you have more eyeballs on your brand, keeps you topmost on their minds, and leaves them curious about your brand which may eventually spark a lasting connection.
This not only promotes your brand but also draws traffic to your creative works depending on what your collaboration aimed to achieve.
Promotes Brand Credibility:
A brand without credibility doesn’t have much authority in itself. Whatever your brand represents, be it you or your creative works, it needs credibility to soar and collaborations can provide that for you.
When you present your brand, yourself, or your work to others through collaborations, people want to stop and listen. It’s a way to build trust with your audience as well as theirs.
They see you in your zone, hear you present and talk about your brand and watch you walk them through what your brand represents. That leaves a lasting impression because word of mouth sells a lot faster.
Depending on what collaboration strategy you are engaged in, the goal should be to put yourself out there and let people see your brand for what it is. Allow yourself to trust the process and direct the flow whichever way you want it.
Build Anticipation Around Your Creative Works:
A major advantage of engaging in collaborations is usually to build anticipation around your creative works.
This could be in form of interviews with a host where you share snippets about your work, it could be in form of a shared post about your work, it could engage your collaborator as an advanced reader, or engage them as reviewers of your creative work.
However form it takes, you are inevitably leveraging their platform to draw more attention to yourself, your brand, and your work.
Take advantage of whichever opportunity presents itself, but ensure it aligns with your goals before jumping on it. Begin your scout from within your circle and expand the beacon from there.
Having a space to share your creative work with like-minded individuals who understand and appreciate your gift is enough motivation for any aspiring author to keep grinding including you.
There are such platforms on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Medium where individuals go out of their way to help publicize independent authors.
There are communities for every niche and simply staying intentional about what you want will open up these opportunities to you.
Collaborations present you to the world, push you outside of your comfort zone, help you create great connections that will challenge your creative ability, and make you strive to be better.
Encourages Community Building and Teamwork:
Building a team around your brand means less work and more contribution from everyone involved because everyone is a partaker in community building and intentional personal growth for everyone.
You get to have people on your side who will come through for you at any time as well as you will show up for them when needed.
It could be for promotions, cross-promotions, pre-launch campaigns, interviews, page engagements, awareness creation, creative help, research, co-authorship, and everything in between.
Another very common way to achieve this is by writing an anthology together, hosting a contest, entering a contest, hosting giveaways, sharing resource materials, making recommendations, creating a book club, and leveraging email lists.
Collaborations expand your reach and open you up to connect with amazing opportunities, intelligent people, talented authors/creatives, and other individuals who are available to help make your transition into the industry a success.
Building an author brand through collaboration is a sure way to ease the stress off your back and allow the flow to aid your growth. It is a process that’s worth a shot as an aspiring author and I encourage you to give it a try.