Setting Priorities

This is part of the Bittersweet Book Launch case study, where Dan Blank and Miranda Beverly-Whittemore share the yearlong process of launching her novel. You can view all posts here.

Miranda and I have had two “official” meeting so far on the book launch, and as we approach a yearlong process and comb through hours of informal conversations, setting priorities is key.

In our first conversation, I dug deep into her goals and expectations. With so many things we “could” do, I want to ensure we are spending our resources on things we “should” do, and scrap the rest.

So I did a basic audit of her core online channels (website, social media channels, etc) and talked to her about each. I ALWAYS love hearing the emotional responses writers have to each channel, and the complicated history. A website is never just a website. It’s a story.

We also reviewed core messaging, how it represents where she WAS, and perhaps not where she is going.

And we also went over some marketing and platform ideas for the next year.

On the second call, we dug into foundational things we need to execute on right now, including the parameters for this blog, as well as another blog on the topic of friendship that we are developing for her. In a moment of total luck, I found a domain name for her friendship blog that I still cannot believe was available:

We went deep about both the practical side of the friend blog and the deeper purpose for it. So so so much of what we are creating we want to do in a way that connects with others based on story and community, NOT “marketing” a book. It’s a funny balance, and I am constantly checking myself to ensure we don’t “jump the shark” anywhere.

I also built this blog for her and began posting content. Again, lots of tiny decisions about branding and ensuring it is not exploiting anything. That’s why, at least for now, the design of this blog is ENTIRELY different from my normal website design, and my logo isn’t anywhere. I’m so excited about what we are creating for Miranda, I want to be constantly sensitive that nothing gets in the way of creating something special.

Next up is developing her friendship blog, and digging much more deeply into how all of her channels will work – from redesigning her main website, reviewing the messaging on her social channels, her headshot, the imagery she uses, and setting up an email list. And that’s just for starters.

It’s going to be a fun year!