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New technologies have brought us a lot of great innovations in recent years. Consumer-grade cameras have such powerful zoom lenses that you can now capture video or take pictures of individual craters on the moon. In some cases, surgeons don''t even have to be in the same room as a patient to perform surgery. They skillfully guide robot arms equipped with surgical tools to perform delicate operations from miles away. And don't get me started on driverless cars. I can't wait for the day when I can nap while I drive to see family and friends 800 miles away.


The most useful new technology for authors trying to build a brand today is livestreaming video. A number of social media sites have integrated the ability for you to post video as you're shooting it. More than a few of my author, actor, and entertainer friends have used the technology to post quick thoughts on world events, online challenges issued by their followers, readings from their latest works in progress, etc.


Live video is an awesome way to reach your readers and build brand recognition. Chances are you're not yet acclimated to performing live on camera, so my advice is to practice what you're going to say before you step in front of the camera. You don't have to memorize lines, but you do want to make sure you have a clear idea on how to present your thoughts coherently. Practicing with the camera off will boost your confidence, and you'll be ready to present your brand in the most positive light.


Don't be afraid to give it a try just because you haven't done it before. Experiment with it. If it's something you don't enjoy doing, don't do it.


-Richard

 

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

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Stay on the Cutting Edge of Technology

Be Authentic to Build Your Brand



940 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: marketing, indie, video, branding, social_media, live_stream
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For the record

Posted by CreateSpaceBlogger Jan 18, 2017

Do you have all the tools of the author's trade? Sure, you have an endless stream of creative energy to get you from the opening line to the last page. And, you have your writing instruments: pen, paper, computer, etc. You have a social media presence that helps boost your author brand. You participate in public readings and author events. You have a professional grade video camera and/or DSLR camera...Wait, maybe you don't have the last item on the list. If you don't, my advice is to invest in one.

 


 

Photos and video are highly effective ways to build your brand. Record your journey with images, and people are more likely to tag along with you. I'm not suggesting you replace written journal entries, tweets, or status updates with photos and video. These images will simply supplement your written posts.


Image quality matters, so don't skimp on resolution. In today's world, high-end smartphones can deliver beautiful pictures and video. Personally, I'm a DSLR man. There's something about the heft of a camera with an interchangeable lens that makes me feel more confident with the final product.


You'll want to move beyond the selfie. Certainly don't bypass the selfie, but don't make it your only means of branding. If you're doing a reading, making a presentation, or contributing on a panel, bring a family member, friend, or assistant to record the event.


At the end of every year, do a compilation video that incorporates all the images you collected from event to event. Do it to help build your brand. Do it so your author journey has a visual record.


-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Picture This

 

The Marketing Tool Many Authors Neglect

 


 


1,297 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: marketing, video, author_brand, marketing_plan, author_platform
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The Author Press Kit

Posted by CreateSpaceBlogger Jun 10, 2015

The media - that entity that exists to bring the public news and information has grown in scope and membership over the years. It's no surprise that technology has drastically changed what we consider to be media. The term used to be reserved for an elite few that dominated the airwaves and print domain. Now, anyone with a computer and access to the internet has a chance to be a major voice in the media.

 

As much as things have changed, things have remained relatively unchanged in one aspect. When you're an author looking for media coverage, you need to eliminate the leg work for members of the media, and direct them to a ready-made press kit that gives them all the information they need. Here is a list of five plus one items for your online press kit. I call it a five plus one because five of the items are essential, while the plus one is a bonus item that is bound to capture the media's attention, if done right.

 

 

  1. Press release for the book: There are a number of tutorials online that show you how to write a press release, but if it's something you don't want to take on yourself, you can always find a press release writing service.
  2. Sample chapter: It doesn't have to be your first chapter. It should be your strongest bit of writing.
  3. One-sentence pitch: If you can sum up your book in one concise sentence, I think you'll find that it will be your strongest selling tool.
  4. Author bio: Make it relevant to your role as a writer. If you don't have a lot of writing experience, demonstrate your writing talent by coming up with a unique and clever bio that will put a smile on the reader's face. My first bio simply said, "R.W. Ridley lives in Charleston, SC with his beautiful wife, a hyperactive dog, three arrogant cats, and one ugly mortgage." I got a lot of great responses to that particular bio.
  5. Author Photo & Book Cover Image: Make sure that both your author photo and your book cover are professional-grade in quality. The media will judge you by the appearance of both.

 

 

Plus One - Video Pitch: Today's online media craves video content. If you are comfortable in front of the camera, clean yourself up and record a media pitch. Talk about the book and yourself, and show them that you've got personality. If you're not comfortable in front of the camera, practice, practice, practice until you are. It will make your life that much easier in an online world increasingly driven by video content.

 

 

-Richard

 

 

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

 

 

 

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Build Your Brand with Video Readings

Lights, Camera, Smile!

8,760 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: authors, author, self-publishing, promotion, video, writers, publishing, writing, pitch, press_release, promotions, social_media, marketing_ideas, marketing_strategy
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Welcome to the Weekly News Roundup - a collection of news, advice and opinions from around the virtual globe.

 

Books/Publishing

 

Write Better: 3 Ways to Introduce Your Main Character - Writer's Digest 

How to create characters that the reader will not only like, but feel like they know, as well.           

 

How to Create an Effective, Engaging Video - Marketing Tips for Authors

Your author video must have a purpose to engage the viewer.     

                           

 

Film

                                                        

Three Reasons Why Great Directing Hinges on Prep Work and Pre-production - Norm Kroll

Going into production without being prepared can ruin a great film.     

                                          

How to Build Your Audience through Email - Filmmaking Stuff

Email is a good tool to use to build your audience.

                                                                                                                                              

Music

 

Six Resolutions All Musicians Should Make for 2015 - Hypebot.com

It all starts with knowing what you're getting into. 

 

What's Wrong with Your Vocal Warm-up? - Judy Rodman

Before you commit to doing vocal warm-ups before performances, make sure you're doing them right.   

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

 

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Weekly News Roundup- January 9, 2015

Weekly News Roundup- January 2, 2015

2,415 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, books, authors, marketing, music, filmmaking, author, promotion, indie, movies, video, writers, writing, characters, films, promotions, directing, musicians, craft, social_media, character_development, author_marketing, film_audience, vocal_excersises
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Welcome to the Weekly News Roundup - a collection of news, advice and opinions from around the virtual globe.

 

Books/Publishing

 

How to Turn Your Written Content into Video Content - The Future of Ink

Repurpose written content into video content for your blog.  

                           

Goodreads Giveaways: Don't Do What You're Told - Catherine, Caffeinated

Author Catherine Ryan Howard shares her insight on how to give away books on Goodreads.      

 

Film

                                                        

7 Bad Habits That Are Holding You Back as a Cinematographer - Noam Kroll.com

Never stop learning how to break bad habits.    

                                          

How Digital Cameras Changed Hollywood Filmmaking - DTV USA FORUM

A digital shoot is different than a film shoot, but the story is still the heart of a movie. 

                                                                                                                                              

Music

 

How to Love Your Own Singing Voice - Easy Ear Training

You have to love your own voice before your audience will.

 

25 Artists and Marketing Experts Give Their Best Advice on How to Promote a New Album - Bob Baker's TheBuzzFactor.com

Release your album one song at a time.  

 

-Richard

Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Weekly News Roundup- August 22, 2014

Weekly News Roundup- August 15, 2014

2,130 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: album, filmmaking, self-publishing, video, blogging, publishing, goodreads, music_marketing, voice, social_media, cinematography, author_tips, author_advice
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Welcome to the Weekly News Roundup - a collection of news, advice and opinions from around the virtual globe.

 

Books/Publishing

 

How to Build Subplots from Multiple Viewpoints -Writer's Digest

How many subplots is too many subplots?         

 

How Much Time Do You Need To Write? -Catherine, Caffeinated

Do you need the whole day to write for an hour?

 

Film

 

18 Writing Exercises to Improve the Quality of Your Script - Filmmaker IQ

Can lessons learned in a poetry group help you write a better script?

 

Disney's Lucasfilm Says Filmmakers Will Soon Be Using Video Game Engines

- Minyanville

Will special effects soon be done in real time and eliminate the need for extensive postproduction?

                                    

Music

 

Singing Multiple Sets? Beware What You Do Between Shows! - Judy Rodman

Resting between sets can save your voice.

 

How to Get More Click-Throughs and Retweets on Twitter -Hypebot.com

There is an art and science to tweeting. Dan Zarella cracks open Twitter and examines how to best use it.

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Weekly News Roundup - October 11, 2013

Weekly News Roundup - October 4, 2013

3,325 Views 0 Comments 0 References Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, marketing, music, filmmaking, indie, video, writing, films, twitter, musicians, filmmakers, social_media, point_of_view, writing_exercises
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I've been experimenting with a new strategy that is meant to help me build brand awareness via video, while not stealing too much of my writing time. Let's face it; I want to be an author more than I want to be a brand. But, I know the importance of putting in the effort to build a brand.

 

This new strategy is easy. I write. I turn on my webcam, and then I read what I've just written on camera. After a few simple edits, I upload the video to YouTube and embed the video on my blog. I follow up by posting a link to the blog post on my social media network.

 

I'm not doing any difficult edits. I'm not using an expensive set or camera. I have no wardrobe budget. No makeup is required. It's just me in front of the computer doing what I normally do anyway, reading what I've written for the day.

 

This is not viral video material. I'm making the videos for the readership I already have. And, while I'm not getting thousands of hits, I am getting something I would say is as equally as important:  I'm having interactions with my readers. They've given me comments on the work in progress, including suggestions on what I should include in the story. Plus, they're getting a personal glimpse of me in my element, doing what I do, which helps put a face to my brand.

 

Simply put, I'm having fun. Not to mention I'm creating a more complete first draft of a story than I ever have before. So, while you're trying to decide how to build your brand, I invite you to try this strategy. If I can do it, anyone can. Here's the first video that explains what I'm doing for the readers, and the very first reading of the story. Note how low-tech it is.

 

 

Is this a brand-building strategy you could implement on your next book project?

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Four Personal Video Tips

Setting Goals for Your Brand

3,553 Views 1 Comments 0 References Permalink Tags: authors, video, writers, writing, branding, author_brand
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And the Debate Goes On

The value of MFA (Master of Fine Arts) programs has been a topic of debate for as long as there have been MFA programs. Those who support MFA programs say they help the talented hone their skills and craft. Those who decry MFA programs claim they churn out cookie-cutter writers who lose all sense of originality. Salon.com devoted some virtual space to the question: are MFA programs good for literature or are they ruining literature?

 

It's true that MFA programs have produced far more competent mediocrities than shining stars, but that's also true of every other literary ecosystem. Shining stars are by definition exceptional. (This is what Batuman means when she describes literature as "elitist.") Yes, MFA grads with nothing to say are now able to say it more skillfully, but authors were pretty good at being boring before university writing programs came along and would surely go on being boring if every MFA program were wiped off the face of the earth. The programs don't make them dull, even if they also can't make them interesting.

 

You can read the entire article on Salon.com: Are MFA programs ruining American fiction?

 

Adapting a Retelling of a Classic Novel

Let's say you want to make a movie based on a classic American novel. And then let's say there's already a movie based on the classic novel, and not just a movie, but an iconic movie that won Oscars. What can you do to set your movie apart? Well if that book and movie is To Kill a Mockingbird, you make a movie that features a "modern retelling" of the classic novel.          

 

BBC Films, the Corporation's film-making arm, is to make a movie inspired by Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird, starring Cillian Murphy. It will transfer the story's setting from the 1930s American Deep South to contemporary England's industrial northeast. The film, Broken, is adapted from Daniel Clay's 2008 novel of the same name, itself a modern retelling of the 1960 classic.

 

You can read the entire article on The Independent: Cannes Diary: BBC plans 'Geordie' version of To Kill A Mocking Bird

 

Lights! Camera! Make a Viral Video!

Unless romantic comedies from the 80s were totally wrong, there was a time when a band had to load their equipment into a barely road-legal van and travel from dive to dive playing their hearts out. They do this for years until one night, a label executive shows up at one of the bars by happenstance and offers said band a 10-album contract after a killer show. Nowadays, YouTube seems to have eliminated the need for the van and seedy bars. Just ask the group Karmin.    

 

YouTube sensations don't have much longevity outside of the site (unless you're Justin Bieber), but Karmin, the No. 8 most-viewed artist this month, seems to be overcoming that tendency. With appearances on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" and a recent onstage collaboration with the Roots, Karmin appears to be on its way. The group blends hip hop with acoustic balladeering to popular effect. We had a chat with the duo that make up Karmin, Amy Heidemann and Nick Noonan, on their recent rise in popularity and their plans for the future.

 

You can read the entire article on the Los Angeles Times' website: YouTube sensation Karmin stays prepared as record labels loom

 

-Richard

Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Weekly News Brief - Books, Film, Music - May 20, 2011

Weekly News Brief - Books, Film, Music - May 13, 2011

1,832 Views 0 Comments 0 References Permalink Tags: authors, authors, music, music, filmmaking, filmmaking, film, film, video, video, writers, writers, writing, writing, youtube, youtube, musicians, musicians, filmmakers, filmmakers


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