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Strategy vs Tactics and Knowing The Difference in Writing May 19, 2012

Posted by bobv451 in autographing, business, money, Uncategorized, writing.

Marketing stuff. Writing stuff. How do you keep them separate? Ans: you don’t. You shouldn’t. VIPub (Vertically Integrated Publishing) means you’re doing it all, so it is one huge stewpot. But knowing the difference between what goes into the stew and the pot itself is important.

A VIPub author needs to create a brand. A reader has to look at a title, see your name and think “good experiences before.” The brand is like that pot. It holds everything together. That’s your strategy, to create the brand. This is the all encompassing purpose of your career. The big picture. The brand.

How do you mix up the stuff in the pot? That’s the tactics. The little stuff all added together to be confined by your brand/strategy/stewpot. What goes in can be a lot of different genre, though it is likely you ought to make smaller pots (strategies) for different ones. This is one reason I sue pen names. A reader of a Karl Lassiter or Jackson Lowry title shouldn’t expect science fiction. The branding should cry out “Lowry writes damn fine western fiction!” Holding it all together are the tactics of short stories and novels and autographings that give the taste to the reader. Not sure if it is possible to have a strategy that works without good tactics. IOW, good branding is accomplished by producing good writing.

But good writing isn’t enough. You need that strategy of how to market, where to market, who ought to be your market to best sell what’s boiling around in the pot. Without the strategy, a writer without a surprise “fairy godmother time” breakout book won’t get noticed–the brand hasn’t been established. Consistently good work is the goal but this is only a tactic on the way to branding.

Know what you’re aiming for. Strategy for an overall writing career is necessary; your name becomes a brand. Getting to this point requires tactics. A solid body of work, ways of finding your audience and enticing them to read your work until branding is achieved–that’s tactics. Twitter and FB and Goodreads and autographings and all the rest are tactics.

Set your sights on the goal (strategy) and start firing (tactics).



1. Jack Foehammer - May 19, 2012

Good stuff, Bob. Essential reading for the writer new to the new age of publishing, i think.

2. Jack Foehammer - May 19, 2012

Reblogged this on Jack Foehammer and commented:
Great post from writer, Bob Vardeman, about writing and tactics. Good advice for the writer new to the new age of publishing.

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