Last week, I had a strange moment, an a-ha moment.
Years ago, I founded a magazine called 32 Poems. The other night, my husband, Bill, was meeting a bookseller from a large independent out west. (My husband is a novelist.)
My husband said, “My wife’s a poet. She founded this magazine called 32 Poems.” The bookseller said, “Your wife is Deborah AGER?” Bill said, “Uh, yeah.” The bookseller said, “Wow, that’s a literary household.”
In case this sounds narcissistic, let me say no one was more shocked than I was that someone had heard of me somewhere.
What I learned from this is that I BUILT A BRAND without even knowing it. Even now, years after I stopped working on the poetry magazine, poets (and those who love poetry) know of me because of the brand I built.
These are some of the ways I did that.
- Published 20 issues of a stellar magazine.
- Attended the major tradeshow every year and figured out how to stand out.
- Wrote a blog before everyone was doing it and connected with my target audience.
- Spoke on panels and to groups.
- Published a book.
- Published a second book.
The books helped build the brand. Once I had the book, I got speaking engagements at universities. I spoke to hundreds of college students so they learned about my own work and 32 Poems.
You can do it, too. Rock on, Word Bosses.