Why you need a plan for your personal brand
Updated: Apr 6
Did you know one of the deciding factors if a first time author gets picked up by publishers is their social media following?
I was surprised to learn this - I honestly (naively) thought that there were lovely people in cardigans with piles of manuscripts around them that had the capacity to just see something in someone's writing and pluck them from obscurity, sign them for a multi-book and big dollars deal and that would be it. The publishing machine would do the rest… side mentions in women’s weekly, maybe a podcast or two, a signing at an independent book store and poof! move over Diana Gabaldon You’re number one on Amazon, five stars on good reads and the adaptation for Netflix is surely only a few short months away.
Apparently not. Publishers look not just at the quality of the writing, but also the writer.
What is their background? how likely are they to engage in the PR behemoth that goes with launching a book? do they have an existing audience already interested in reading their work - that is, do they have an engaged community on social media ready to buy their work at the pre-order step? Apparently getting more pre-order sales is exponentially helpful to getting high rankings when you first publish. And therefore, more likely to be seen by online book shoppers. In short - a book is successful not just because of what is between the front and back cover but also because of the enthusiasm and engagement of the person who wrote it. The personal brand of the author has a direct link to the success of the book. And publishers know this, so if you are wanting to write a book and get it published the two things you should start doing today is 1. Writing and 2. Telling people about your writing on social media. The same advice can be given to OTs and academics. We may not have a gatekeeper of a publisher to convince for our career to get started like authors do but we absolutely need people to know about our work before they start working with us. Whether that work be as a clinician, an educator or a researcher. An audience of people connected to you and your work and potentially ready to buy from you when you have something to offer is one of the most helpful assets you can start to develop today. If that isn’t enough of a reason as to why you need a plan for your personal brand how about this... It will give you a connection to the people you want to work with, allow you to more readily meet their needs, come up with creative solutions for them and provide more options for your career - some of which you probably can’t even anticipate now. If you are interested in developing your personal brand as an OT but aren't sure where to start; here's an easy prompt: let me know what questions you have (just reply to this email - super simple) - and we can start to work out a plan together Cally xx
And if you haven't already seen it check out this freebie...
Free masterclass: Personal branding for Occupational Therapists
Trust me, I'm an OT... How to create content for social media & become the go-to voice in your community using the research storyteller model
This masterclass explores the 3 mistakes most Occupational Therapists make when creating content for social media and the solutions you can implement and take action today to become a trusted source for your community.