When it comes to marketing, I talk a lot about the big picture, because:
- Once you grasp the big picture, the details become easier.
- I see writers who get drawn into the details, but don’t have a clear “big picture,” so their detailed work doesn’t add up the way they want or expect.
I also talk about the big picture, because it’s easier to incorporate many different writers into the discussion. After all, we all have a “big picture,” but we don’t all have a blog, or social media sites, or whatever specific detail we might discuss. At the same time, unless we learn how to drill that big picture down to specific, actionable details, we become stagnant.
So, take a moment to envision your big picture. To help, I’m going to share a bit about mine:
I have multiple interests, so I cannot settle on one topic. I write about autism. I write about special needs parenting. I write high fantasy. I also write a darker, grittier fantasy+. I write about writing and marketing. I write for businesses. While the audiences for these works differ, they also overlap to some degree. It’s important for me to maintain an identity—a version of myself—that is true to those different audiences, but also draws them (loosely) together.
I want to build a platform for each of these versions of my writing self, but I also want to build bridges between these platforms so that I can carry the overlapping audiences with me when I step from one platform to another. Therefore, my big picture includes communications suitable for multiple audiences and for single audiences.
I need to be able to reach my audiences online and offline. I need to make products/services available to meet each audience’s needs, which often involves both online and offline versions of the products/services. I need a strong enough platform to establish my credibility on multiple fronts, and to widen my reach so I can establish connections more deeply within each audience.
From this big picture, (remember, yours will be different from mine), come the details:
- A website that addresses the needs of multiple audiences.
- Blogs that address the needs of specific (sometimes overlapping) audiences.
- Relationships that connect me to a specific audience.
- Relationships that connect me to resources I can use with a variety of audiences.
- Social media sites that can be tailored to specific audiences, that also expose those audiences to my other platforms.
And that’s just an example of some of the details that have been derived from my big picture.
The point is once you have the big picture, you can create a rough framework for the details. You’ll need to drill it down to increasing layers of specificity, but the movement from the big picture to the details is about clarifying the details in light of the big picture. It’s a process. Take it in steps. You can’t make the leap from your big picture to answering “What do I post today?” in a single bound.