Building an Emotional Brand

What? What the heck is that? Everything I’ve read over these last two years says you need to build your “brand” as you are writing. Build an audience. Fellow authors are good at that, as are the local musicians I have the pleasure to know. They genuinely want each other to succeed. When one succeeds, we all do. It’s nice to have that kind of relationship with others, rather than a competitive one. I’m not a competitive person at all. It’s just not in me.

Your branding is basically what you market about yourself and what you do. If that’s wrong, someone please comment and enlighten us, please. Seriously. You need to capture the attention of the folks you want to buy your product (book). Encourage purchase. Develop a relationship to gain return customers. It builds loyalty. Social Media has really increased encounters among authors and their potential readers. Blogs, Newsletters, Facebook Pages, Websites, all put us out there where fans will decide if we’re worth their time and money.

I have a couple of authors whose books I purchase before release just to make sure I have the complete set. The Jesse Stone series is one I’ve collected and read every word. I’ll keep them to read, they are a fast read. And since Tom Selleck starred in the television adaptation of several of the books, I love the image it conjures up about the principal character. He is a serious asset to sell a book, tv show, or just about anything. I’m a Blue Bloods faithful as well. He’s aged rather well and has such substance of character. That’s my “emotional” take on anything he produces. I’m in!

Jennifer Chiaverini is another author who has my loyalty. When I started quilting, I saw her on a Quilting program with Alex Anderson. They talked about her books about a group of quilters, and I purchased the books as they were released. They were delightful. There were all ages of women as characters, some were historical figures, and I learned a lot. Women made quilts for the soldiers in the Civil War. Often the deceased were returned home (when possible) wrapped in their quilts. Many were simply buried in the quilts to have something from home with them. What a beautiful thought. Jennifer has now branched out to historical fiction and the role women have held in history. A slave dressmaker for Mrs. Lincoln. A woman spy during WWII. It opens your horizons for sure. I like that.

When I was still working as a Systems Analyst at Mutual of Omaha, we collectively did not care for the Marketing Department. It wasn’t anything personal, but often times, we had 85K hoops to jump through for their great new product to become a reality and make money for the company.

You had to understand each state to this day still has quirks about the health insurance sold in their states. It can be the “pitch” the type is written in for notices; it can be the languages the notices need to be written in; it can be the envelope the documents are sent in. I imagine all these years later there are bigger quirks to deal with. Many, many, hours were spent in meetings with the marketing folks with our senior analysts talking about existing quirks and analyzing if new quirks would mess up the old quirks.

Mutual sold off their health insurance business to Aetna, one of the companies they acquired during the time I was there. Their focus now is on property management and banking. The entire time I worked there, employees were afraid of a National Health Coverage. At that time, Medicare claims were processed at the company, I’m not sure where they’re processed now. Guess I should check my EOB’s.

Health Insurance is a field where the emotions must be dealt with when making a change. It’s a shame people are not better educated about what their coverage is, why it is, and what you need to do to get your claims taken care of. Personally, I don’t want the government to make me leave my health coverage. It’s perfect for me. The Babe’s is perfect for him. We made informed decisions and they still stand. Leave us alone! And I don’t care for Joe Namath marketing a Medicare Plan that will confuse and build up false hope for the subscribers. I can’t help but think they over-promise and under-produce.

Having grown up watching more than my share of Westerns, the first place my mind goes upon hearing the word branding is to branding cattle. The next place now is the Yellowstone Brand John Dutton inflicts on some of his ranch hands. It certainly makes a statement now, doesn’t it? It produces a certain understanding between the character and his men. Especially with Rip, who is the chief enforcer. There is no misunderstand between Rip and John Dutton. It’s a great portrayal on both their parts.

Do you have a suggestion for me with my search on branding myself? I’ve been told I’m the best listener. I’ve been told I’m a loyal friend. I’ve also been told I have a great sense of humor. I suppose those things are a good start. Any suggestions? I’m eager to see if anyone offers anything up. C’mon. Nothing to do with branding flesh, thank you very much.

Right now, I’m off to do some household chores; kitchen duty; and wear my hat as Webmaster for VFW Post 2503’s website and Facebook pages. They have a lot of things going on in February, 2021. Check them out if you’d like, members must have served in a war on foreign soil; and guests are welcome, too. But after I update stuff, ok? Thanks.

Thank you for reading today. I hope you have a beautiful day. We’ll see each other tomorrow, so until then, be safe.

Happy Wednesday!

Can you believe this header photo is one of only two photos of “Wednesday” on Pixabay Free Photos? Wow. I’m going to try it again on another site.

Much Better! This is a much more positive take on Wednesday. Although if you’re a goth chick, you’ll be happy with the other rendering, can you imagine that Wednesday being happy? I suspect in all the Addams Family movies, there is no happy Wednesday.

I’m not a Goth, so I’ll take the one here. We spend so much time wishing for the weekends, it’s too bad. Pride in your work is important, and it doesn’t matter if you’re pursuing a dream or working for a living so someday you can pursue your dream. Take pride in what you’re doing, whatever day it is!

Right now, I’m checking emails to see if the software is coming. They’ve run out of what I ordered, but will send me something better, same price. So do it already! There are risks involved in ordering blindly like I just did, but most places are legit. Cross your fingers, sprinkle Holy Water, and a dash of sale over your shoulder. I need Publisher today, please! Oh! There it is. Uncross, bless yourself, and get out your broom. We’re good.

Did I also mention I have a persistent 70 pound lab barking at me to play catch? I don’t have writer’s block; I have Lab Interruptions. I can toss it at the office/studio door, it hits and goes the opposite direction. Not bad since I not only throw like a girl, I throw like a Grandma on top of it! Everyone needs a Goldie; a big, lovable, goofball of a dog to brighten the dark days of winter.

Although it was a tremendous amount of work, I’m glad the Babe got her when he did. We were still missing Roxie so bad! The Babe was heartbroken, so was I. And Gavin, our loving grandson who was her best buddy. I think since they could both be naughty sometimes, and that may be why they were buddies. They just “got” each other. Goldie just loves him to death, too. He can run and play with her. Lexie kind of ignores everything around, she’s more of a watchdog. She sits for hours with me in my studio office, resting her chin on the top of her chair, and laying on a soft blanket. Good place to post up to.

I purchased this for myself for Christmas. It’s very inspiring.

This woman writes extensively about aging in this time. It’s like no other time, and we can approach it how we like. How freeing! It’s for anyone who wants to make their lives and relationships filled with as much love and respect as there can be – even our relationships with ourselves. Those relationships are often either neglected or non-existent. They are really the most important ones.

Dian Friesel calls herself a perception analyst. I had not heard that term before. It is branding, which takes the place of marketing now, I believe. I find it a curious question, the whole concept of branding. They don’t mean like branding happens in the popular Paramount Series, “Yellowstone.” Although, that’s the first kind that comes to mind.

I’m a pretty reserved person most of the time. I don’t like to brag (throwback to growing up female and Catholic, it’s not ladylike!). I need to state my worth and accomplishments. That is gender neutral. There is a lot to overcome when you enter a field at a more experienced place in life. Old tapes, old ideas, old social mores.

As anyone ages, they re-examine things in their lives. It’s normal, I believe. Religion, family, and society all have “norms.” Some are obsolete, some simply need to update as society changes. That’s not to say good things get tossed out. No, I’d never propose something so radical. The laws we govern by reflect the Ten Commandments. They’re a pretty complete set of guidelines. Mortal man, with all of his imperfections, can never improve upon them.

I now have an entire sleeping studio office staff. I won! I wore her down, finally!

The downside to wearing Goldie out is I’m finished with this, and need to download software on a laptop in another office. Don’t want to wake Goldie. Oops, I’l find something to occupy myself with. Like putting dog photos in order. I printed them before Christmas and didn’t complete that project. Life is going just too fast! We’re so fortunate to be active and aging. Not as active as I’d like to be, but close enough.

Whatever you do this afternoon, put your heart into it. Visit your mom. Call your uncle. E-mail or text your kids. Text is probably better. Hopefully, they’ll answer. Keep in touch with your loved ones. I had a conversation with my FBIL (Favorite Brother In Law) early this morning, and we solved the world’s problems. And my I/T questions. He is my go-to for anything I/T related. So fortunate to have such a smart, generous guy to help me with issues.

While you’re waiting for your software to show up, or whatever you are doing this afternoon, be aware of co-workers, cohabitants, heck, whoever shares a space with you at all today. Make sure you’re socially distanced. And masked if you wish. Be kind to them. Be considerate to them. Respect their opinions, if they differ from yours. We need to do this, now. Your world will be better.

Thank you for reading today, and we’ll see each other tomorrow!