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You Are Your Writing Business and Your Writing Is Your Product

Updated on April 23, 2014

The Ugly Side of Writing

I know you don’t want to talk about this, but it is necessary.

If you are a writer who has goals that include making money, then you need to treat your writing as a product that will be sold by your business, and the business is you.

In Marketing, image is crucial, and so I ask you….what is your image?

It is a valid question and it is one that you need to answer.

What image do you portray to the readers of the world?

In a very real sense, who you are as a human being will be reflected to the public through your actions, and in today’s world of online interaction, this is a truth that cannot be ignored. So much of our promotional activities are done online. We are promoting our product to people who have never met us in person. This isn’t like some mom and pop grocery store where you greet your customers face to face and they have a chance to interact with you in person. Your online image is the image that people judge you by, so again….what is your image?

This is the William D. Holland Business
This is the William D. Holland Business | Source

A must for any writer looking to make money writing

The Social Media Scene

Welcome to Facebook and Twitter, two media giants that can make or break you as a writer. Every single time you post on Facebook or Twitter, you are building, or destroying, your image. Think about that fact for a moment, and then reflect upon your daily postings online. What do those postings say about you as a person? What do they say about you as a writer? If you think this is unimportant then you really are living in a fantasy world.

I currently have 1,382 “friends” on Facebook. Each one is a possible customer, and whether or not they buy my new novel, “Resurrecting Tobias,” will depend on their impressions of me as a real person, and those impressions are based on what I post on those sites.

If I constantly post things that have poor grammar and poor spelling, what do you think that says about me as a writer?

If I constantly spew negative remarks, what do you think that says about me as a writer and a person?

If I constantly post hateful remarks, what do you think that says about me?

Think about it and tell me that I’m wrong.

And think about this as well: If I spend all my time on Facebook promoting myself, and no time supporting others, then what does that say about me?

Face to Face Interaction

Like many writers I have business cards that declare that my name is Bill Holland and I am a professional writer. When I meet people who might be interested in forming an alliance of some sort in the future, I give them my card, shake their hand, and smile. I want their first impression of me to be a positive one. I do not go out in public dressed like “death warmed over,” and I do not act like a complete ass. I am friendly, engaging, helpful…..in short, I am a person that leaves a good impression.

If I am meeting a possible future client, I dress accordingly and put on my business face. I am asking them to give me money for my writing service, and because of that I want to appear to be trustworthy and professional.

If I enter a bookstore and ask the owner to place my book on his/her shelf, I act like I am truly humbled that they would do so. If I give a reading at a community center, I am friendly to all and I act like I am truly grateful that they would spend their time with me and listen to my words.

Hell, if I meet a stranger on the street, I am friendly, because I never know who my next customer will be….but mainly because it is the right way to act.

No, for me it is not an act. I am by nature friendly, but let’s say for one moment that I am actually a horse’s ass by nature. What then?

Well consider this: There are millions of writers in the world writing millions of books. Do you really think you improve your chances of selling a book by being an ass?

This is my place of business
This is my place of business | Source

A Transformation Must Take Place

If you just write for your own enjoyment, and readership is not important to you, then ignore all of this.

However, if you write with a goal in mind of making money, then you need to change the way you approach your writing right now. You are the face of your business. Say it again with me. You are the face of your business. Before anyone reads a single word of that great novel you are about to publish, they will know you through the image you have portrayed, and their image of you will determine whether they buy your book.

I know a couple writers who post daily on Facebook and quite frankly, there is no way I will spend money on any writing that they sell. They are not nice people. If we lived in a “Fahrenheit 451” world, and theirs were the only books available on the underground market, I would not spend a penny on their work. I will not support despicable people….period!

Try this exercise. Go to your Facebook page and scan through your postings over the past week. What do those postings say about you as a person? What do they say about you as a writer?

Try this exercise. Think back to the last time you met someone from your buying public. How did you act? What first impressions did you make during that meeting?

You really need to think about this.

Elizabeth Gilbert Video

This is my product
This is my product | Source

Times They Are A’changin’

This is no longer 1950. We no longer live in a world where a writer can live in seclusion, write a brilliant novel, find a publisher, have the book published and never have to interact with the public. The days of Steinbeck and Hemingway are gone, part of our past with bell-bottomed jeans and tail fins on cars.

Today, as a writer, even if you find an agent, you are expected to pitch in and carry the load of marketing. You will be expected to have a blog and website. You will be expected to have an online presence on Facebook and Twitter. You will be expected to give readings at bookstores. That’s how it works today. One book sale at a time, building one brick at a time, increasing the word-of-mouth chatter about your book, and hopefully at the end of a year or two, sales of a couple thousand units….welcome to Writing in 2014.

There are few overnight success stories. I recently watched a TED Talk video by Elizabeth Gilbert, the celebrated author of “Eat, Pray, Love,” which spent 199 weeks on the New York Times Bestseller List. She published her first article in 1992. Her success with “Eat, Pray, Love” came in 2006. For those of you who are math-challenged, that means fourteen years were spent building her craft and her image before she found mammoth success.

Fourteen years!

After watching her video my first impression was one I suspect many other viewer had…..I thought that there is a person I would like to know. I thought that there is a person who would be a great friend and a fascinating conversationalist. I thought that she had a wonderful sense of humor and she genuinely appeared to be a good human being.

All of those impressions from a fifteen minute video.

Ms. Gilbert may, in fact, be all those things, but that really isn’t the point.

Image is everything…that is the point.

I know you don’t want to talk about this, but it is necessary.

You are the face of your business.

And what does your face say to the buying public?

2014 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

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    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ann, your point is a good one, and yet all I have to do is go shopping and I'll run across retail clerks, or business owners, who don't seem to understand this. I doubt they read this article. :)

      Wonderful weekend so far my friend. I hope you are having the same.

      Ann

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      I can't imagine why anyone would not want to be pleasant and outwardly engaging all the time. If we want to impress, we need to think about the way we are. Isn't that obvious?

      Apparently not, because I've come across people who don't seem to understand that.

      My main thought is that all these criteria apply to life in general. If we don't come across as pleasant, helpful and engaging then we're not going to be liked anyway! Simple!

      I hope the right people are reading this but, sadly, maybe not!

      Great stuff as always.

      Hope your weekend has been good, bill, and that the week ahead is even better!

      Ann

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      As always, you are very welcome, Deb. Thank you and have a great week.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      This sure says a great deal. I have read the posts that you speak about, and got a very sinking feeling. However I never thought about it. You are so right, and thank you for mentioning it.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I appreciate that, Dianna! Thank you my friend, and have a great week.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 3 years ago

      I don't think you have to worry about coming over as "unnatural" in your communication with others. You are indeed a friendly and it comes over quickly when one first meets you. Your example will greatly help others to know what it takes to market their product.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      No doubt about it, Christin. It has to be used wisely and in moderation, or don't bother. That is true of any marketing endeavors by the way.

      Thank you and it's nice to see you stop by.

    • ChristinS profile image

      Christin Sander 3 years ago from Midwest

      Very sound advice as usual sir. I agree, social media can definitely tarnish ones image and very quickly, fortunately, with the right effort, the opposite is also true. I've received a few leads and customers from social media posts.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Faith, who am I to argue with those great minds? I'll just keep my mouth shut and hope I appear intelligent. LOL

      love,

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Audrey, thank you for that confirmation. I have always tried to have a conversational style of writing, and it is very nice to hear that you feel that I achieved it. Blessings to you this weekend.

      bill

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      P.S. I attempt to be mindful of the "Golden Rule" in every aspect of life and in writing, commenting, etc. as I have seen those who obviously make indirect points and are in reality participating in bullying. As my wise mother would say, If you do not have anything nice to say, then it is best to say nothing at all. I am also reminded of a couple of great quotes usually credited to Abraham Lincoln or Mark Twain:

      "Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and to remove all doubt."

      A different version of the above quote:

      "It’s better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than open it and remove all doubt."

      Then there is always Proverbs 17:28.

      "Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent, and discerning if he holds his tongue." (NIV)

      And another version of the same: "Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding."

      Blessings

    • brakel2 profile image

      Audrey Selig 3 years ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

      Hi Bill. When you write, you do a great job of presenting yourself as if you were talking to a friend. This makes your words personal to each reader. It is no wonder your marketing is successful. Thanks for sharing what could work for us as writers. Sharing Blessings. Audrey.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      My pleasure, vkwok! Thank you!

    • vkwok profile image

      Victor W. Kwok 3 years ago from Hawaii

      Thanks for the amazing suggestions, Bill!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for your thought, Flourish. Actually there are two other authors with my name...so maybe it wasn't a mistake. Oh well, too late to worry about it now. :)

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Great advice, Bill. You are definitely your brand and you're selling your product. I don't know that you made a mistake by choosing the "billybuc" name. It's very different, whereas I would bet there are a number of people who share your given name. I was surprised to learn how many people shared my given name, even though I have an odd spelling. The name FlourishAnyway allows me to speak more freely about some of my experiences and incorporates some of my key identity into my writing.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Tim, that is nice of you to say, but I have made a ton of mistakes along the way. The first mistake I made on HP was choosing the name billybuc instead of choosing my own.....I think I lost a ton of views by doing that....but oh well...as you say, live and learn.

      Thank you my friend.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Don, many have gone that route and I think it would be a good decision. Good luck setting that up and finding direction, and thanks for sharing your thought.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you, Faith, and you aren't the only one who doesn't understand Twitter....and it doesn't bother me at all that I don't. LOL

      Have a blessed day my friend

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Glimmer, as sad as that is, it is the perfect example. I would be glad, too, and I wonder if she even understands what kind of damage that does to her career. Thanks for sharing that.

    • tsmog profile image

      Tim Mitchell 3 years ago from Escondido, CA

      Great points. I have felt like I approached this as you presented with life adventures with business as a career. Why would writing be different? This article nicely points that out. A worth reading sharing experience.

      My grandpa used to say we learn from mistakes. Why not learn from other peoples mistakes and save time :) Kinda a backward meaning too. Learn what was done correctly! You are a great example, Bill. Thank you for sharing. Watching you over the years I can attest to seeing what is presented practiced.

      tim

    • Don Bobbitt profile image

      Don Bobbitt 3 years ago from Ruskin Florida

      BillyBuc- Great article and full of golden nuggets for other aspiring writers.

      I have been in the process, for over a year now, restructuring my (too) many access sites in an effort to pull my own personal image into one major focal point.

      Sad to say, I only used Facebook and Twitter for family and close friends for years, and now I think I am going to have a long haul building a "Don, the Writer" image rather than my existing "Good Old Don" one.

      Anyway, your article is right on the point. You are your Product,

      Have a great day,'DON

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Morning Dear Bill,

      You know how I feel about the words we speak and we truly never know just how far our words will resonate with all who read! It seems that FB can be filled with so much drama, especially with younger people, that it is such a waste of good life to get entangled in all of that and so I don't. I think it was Nadine up there who commented about a fan page, and that sounds like a great idea, where one can keep separate one's personal life with one's writing.

      I do have Twitter and still do not understand how it all works with the retweeting and such. I share hubs there is all.

      Great advice here as always Bill.

      Have a wonderful day.

      Blessings and peace.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Glimmer Twin Fan 3 years ago

      I was just thinking about this the other day. I have a facebook friend who has been been trying to get a teaching job with a school district for years. However almost every single thing she posts has grammar and spelling mistakes (big ones, not just a quick typo). All I can think about when I see her posts is that I'm glad she won't be teaching my child. This hub can be applied to every career.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      LOL...parrster, I know quite a few writers who would sign up for that cloning class. Thanks for the visit and the laugh.

    • parrster profile image

      Richard Parr 3 years ago from Oz

      I need a marketing clone of me. I'd do all the writing, they'd just generate business and work the social sites. Actually, a third clone to do the admin would be handy to.

      Great article. thanks

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jo, in my case, this is experience based on mistakes....again, beneficial to all who want to avoid them. :) Thank you for your kindness my friend, and blessings to you alway.

      bill

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 3 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Bill, now you've gone and burst my bubble. There goes my dreams of writing a best seller and becoming an eccentric recluse, oh well...back to the drawing board. :)

      As you've said so many times before, the real work begins after the book is finished. For me, that's a long way down the road. As always, you've given us the benefit of your experience, advice don't come any better. Excellent hub, thank you for telling it like it is.

      My best to you.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      My goodness, Nadine, when do you find time to eat and sleep? LOL You are one busy girl, and I appreciate your perspective on this subject, a perspective honed from experience....which is the best kind. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Lady!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      PS, I think of you often too. I know these are hard times for you, and all of your efforts are focused on your family. Sending hugs and prayers your way my dear.

      bill

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 3 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      You have some very good points Billy. I'm very selective when people want to join my Facebook page, since my personal topic is all about evolution, ascension and Unity consciousness. My main Facebook page has over 2700 followers, but that also includes my family, friends, and our authors. Not all are into my topic, therefore I have several fan pages, each deal with the topic of my books. I also have to keep up with our KimaGlobalPublishers Facebook page and have an Kima authors group that can keep my busy. ( often shared your writing hubs on there) I never never never post anything that is unkind, judgmental, or opinionated. I spent time liking posts and sharing videos and on a rare occasion will I post photos. Usually about our publications and I create banners or flyers when our authors have an upcoming event. Facebook is our main Social Network platform.

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 3 years ago from West By God

      Voted up and useful and interesting and shared.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 3 years ago from sunny Florida

      As usual, Billy, I find here words that reflect the writer I know you are. And I am blessed to have met you here and share much of what you say with emerging writers.

      I think of you often and wish you well.

      Angels are on the way to you and Bev and the chicks. ps

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Kawi, it is my pleasure. We all need a reminder now and then. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks again, Geena.

    • KawikaChann profile image

      KawikaChann 3 years ago from Northwest, Hawaii, Anykine place

      As always Bill, an interesting read and very helpful advice to the millions that don't think twice about the bite-back from bad behavior. I caution my kids about this all the time. Thanks for the helps! Peace. Kawi.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 3 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Lol Billy. That's why I put tough love in quotation marks, because you are more gentle than tough. But you are also right. We need to hear (read) this. :-)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Genna, as a former teacher, tough love comes easily to me. LOL Hopefully there are those who would say I can also do gentle love.

      Thank you as always.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sheila, I have to remind myself of this daily as I prepare to log on to Facebook. If we want to make money doing this gig then we must present ourselves accordingly.

      Thanks my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Dora, I always appreciate you taking the time to visit me. Thank you and you are very welcome.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 3 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Excellent advice, Bill. I am of those writers who, although friendly, has difficulty in viewing my writing as a product. This is a good example of the "tough love" I need to hear. Thank you!

    • profile image

      sheilamyers 3 years ago

      Thanks for the reminder to always put forth a good image. We all gripe and complain at times on social media, but we also need to show that's not all we have to us as people.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Just recently, I was remembering the publisher who googled my name before he made a marketing flyer for my book. All the information out from years back do affect us forever. We are marketing ourselves every day in every way. Thanks for the reminder.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I love that example, Liz, and I agree with you. I have seen several authors who were obnoxious and I thought there is no way I'll read their books. It all matters.

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      Elizabeth Parker 3 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      Wow- that is amazing about Elizabeth Gilbert- I had no idea! I agree, writing is a business and you are creating an impression with every word that you write. I always use Dean Koontz as an example- I guess because he's one of my favorites, but although I love his books as they are...I love them more because he seems like a guy who is down to earth and extremely cool. He has created an image which I do believe helps sell his books.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      pop, I don't blame you for leaving. I am about to delete about half my "friends" because I don't want to be friends any longer. :) Thanks as always for stopping by.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      David, I have had to make those difficult decisions, and they are not easy, but they are necessary. Good luck with your dilemma and thank you.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      yes it does, DDE! And you present a good product.

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 3 years ago

      I left FB, because I was so disgusted with the inane self-servng posts. I have no regrets, even if it means that fewer people read my work. Having said that, I agree with every single thing you have written. Voted up, useful, interesting and awesome.

    • David Warren profile image

      David Warren 3 years ago from Nevada

      This is indeed great advice. I am on FB, as in life, a respectable, dependable, and mature person. I seldom go on FB anymore because I have so many young drama filled "friends" and distant family members posting comments that I would never say much less post on the internet. I keep the account open only in the hope that I may actually help some of these "friends" and family members. The obvious down side is that on a professional level association does mean everything in this new digital world we reside in. Perhaps some difficult decisions are in my immediate future.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      What we write and produce is our product the way the project is put in front of us does play the important role.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Heidi, you may have coined that term, but it is perfect. Saleswriters...many writers need to understand the truth in that term and start working towards it. Thank you and yes, I expected you today. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you sujaya!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Suzette, that was the point I was making...image and real must merge or it will become obvious in time. Thanks for noting that.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lizzy, that last group of people are my favorites. :) And I love '59 Cadillacs as well...my uncle made a living selling them in L.A. and supported fifteen kids doing it....yes, I said fifteen!

    • sujaya venkatesh profile image

      sujaya venkatesh 3 years ago

      fight your right/write to earn

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 3 years ago from Chicago Area

      Of course you know that I'm going to agree on comment on this one, right? :)

      Love the Elizabeth Gilbert 14-years-to-success story. Overnight successes can take a lot of overnights of unsuccess to get there. Then there's that whole "10,000 hours to mastery" thing (see Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers for that discussion).

      Back in the day, even as recently as the mid-20th century, we were still living in a world with so much less competition than we have today. So the stories of common folks being "discovered" by talent buying powers (agents, publishers, movie studios, etc.) were, well, more common. The world's population has increased dramatically, while attention spans have dropped dramatically. So it comes down to vying for limited opportunities for writers and other artists. Being good saleswriters (okay, I just coined that term) is not a recommendation, it's a requirement.

      Thank you so much for spreading the sales gospel!

    • suzettenaples profile image

      Suzette Walker 3 years ago from Taos, NM

      Hopefully the image and the real person merge and are one. Just image alone will not sell anything if the real person is revealed not to be the image. You give some great practical advice for a writing career on and off the Internet. It is quite a social network world today. Thanks for sharing your experience with us today.

    • Radcliff profile image

      Liz Davis 3 years ago from Hudson, FL

      For the record, I love bell-bottoms and '59 Cadillacs.

      As I read this, I thought of the people I know in real life and on Facebook and how their posts accurately reflect who they are in person. Negative people post negativity and self-absorbed people always try to draw attention to themselves. Caring people post with others in mind.

      Then there are those people who are always posting photos of their adorable children . . . but they're pretty cool.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      True words, Michelle, and that is a lesson we are constantly learning. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mari, I think it is an acquired taste. LOL I think you'll get used to it my friend.

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 3 years ago from Singapore

      I think we always have to strike the balance between pleasing ourselves as writers and writing for others. We cannot compromise ourselves, nor can we forget that those who read us are our buyers. Sharing.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jamie, I am a recluse by nature. Every time I do some marketing it is like a trip to the dentist for me. You can do it!

    • profile image

      dragonflycolor 3 years ago

      I write to write and the money is the icing on the cake. It's funny, because I don't like icing at all. Thanks, Bill!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eric, I think it all depends on what your goals are my friend. If you aren't in this writing business for the money then it really doesn't matter I guess. :)

    • jhamann profile image

      Jamie Lee Hamann 3 years ago from Reno NV

      Thank you Bill, I am taking your advice to heart. The marketing is the hardest part for me I am not the worlds most social person, but I can figure it out with a little help from your hubs. Jamie

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 3 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Gilbert is wonderful, thank you.

      If I am a man, I am the man I have made myself to be. I do not know that I am marketable but I am me. Perhaps I should reflect on that and listen to you.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sherrituck, you don't need this article. You obviously understand the importance of this and you are practicing it daily. Well done, and thank you for sharing your experience.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, I firmly believe that, and anyone who doesn't has a fool for a boss. :) We are our image as far as the buying public is concerned. Fair or not, that is the truth.

      Thank you dear friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Kim, I like the way you said it better than the way I said it. LOL Thank you for beautifully summarizing what I was trying to say.

    • sherrituck profile image

      Sherri Tuck 3 years ago from Virginia

      There is so much truth to this article. We have to learn marketing skills in order to sell ourselves in the marketplace. We are the face of our product. As writers, we long to be the eccentric character; however, if we want to sell our product we must be professional. I try to keep my Facebook life separate from my writing career. My Facebook life is geared for my clothing and jewelry business. My Linked-In life is geared for my professional endeavors like my teaching career and my writing career. There is a time and a place for everything.

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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Image is so important, especially in today's online world. Very rarely do we get to meet our online friends face to face. It can be tough sometimes because the written word is always subject to interpretation - including comments posted. I don't have a dedicated FB page for my business therefore I have my settings set to where I have to approve outsiders posting to my timeline. You never know when a prospective client or agent will check your online presence, including Facebook. In fact that very well could be the first place they look because it's much more casual than your webpage. Having crap show up in your name - even if it wasn't posted by you - can have an adverse effect on your career.

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      kschimmel, if we want financial success we most certainly do. Thank you for stopping by.

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Janine, you definitely do not need this advice, but thank you so much for being here...and that is part of your public persona, your loyalty to others.

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      ocfireflies 3 years ago from North Carolina

      Bill,

      This piece reminds me of a conversation I had recently with some friends. I was explaining how one must know what it is like to be you in order to know when you are not you. This hub is an excellent as are all the ones you write. Reminding writers or anyone who wishes to be noticed for his or work first starts with knowing who you are so that you know how to best market the best you---you can be. Per always, V+++

      Kim

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      Kimberly Schimmel 3 years ago from North Carolina, USA

      We do need to think about our "brand" as writers.

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      Janine Huldie 3 years ago from New York, New York

      Bill, once again you have said it perfectly about selling ourselves personally and branding ourselves as writers. I always try to think in terms of what others do think of me personally. In no means, do I think I can please all the people all the time, but I am happy if I have a good percentage thinking of me positively. So, to me, I am all for your suggestions here. Thanks again Bill and enjoy your day.

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Brandi, how interesting. I'm sorry you had that experience with your family. I'll never understand people for as long as I live.

      Thank you and it's always good to see you.

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      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Really great suggestions Billy! One mistake I made on FB right from the first day I registered is that I added family to my friends list. That was a huge mistake and detrimental to my success on FB. I am no longer on FB because of that reason.

      At that time, in 2011, I was promoting some craft items I made for resale. But then I started getting some ugly and rude comments from my family. That didn't help at all. Finally, a woman that I knew from my childhood saw my work and hired me to do some bulletin board designs and other projects for her recreation department. That was also a mistake. I was no longer able to make things as I had always done. Now it was all based on her terms.

      If I were to do it all again, I'd start with a new FB account, not attract family, and keep it professional instead of starting out personal.