If you need a general idea of where you are and an indication of how many more steps you need to go, The Platform Quiz will give you an overview. Sometimes it helps to have a measuring tool with a starting point and an end point in building the structure that’s going to support your efforts as an author for a long time to come.
Welcome to The Author Platform Quiz!
This quick assessment process gives you an overview of the vital points of a smoothly running writer platform machinery and general gauge of author involvement in each category as a starting point reference.
Note: Author strategies and solutions for building and combining these main points are fully developed in a 14 step method in the book Build Your Author Platform: The New Rules, and webinar. See www.buildauthorplatform.com
The Platform Self-diagnostic Test
(Check as comparison point for progress as platform grows.)
1. (10 pts possible) Acid test: Google a best-selling branded author such as Stephen King. Google David Meerman Scott for a thorough platform development example. Then Google your name and compare
to see if your name shows up correctly, if it’s combined with others with the same name, if there is confusion about whose entries are whose, if you are clearly findable. Note: since results are tailored to you, works best with an un-personalized search method.
Rate your findability as an author scale 1-10.
2. (10 pts possible) Author web site: Do you have an author web site? Does it show up clearly if a reader or buyer is looking for you? Is your author brand clearly summed up the minute you click on your web site? Rate your author brand web site findability and clear statement of author brand?
3. (10 pts possible) Blog: Do you have a blog? Is your author brand clearly stated along with a photo of you with a greeting welcoming your audience? Do you have comments and share buttons?
4. (10 pts possible) Bookstores/Reviews: Amazon: Are you registered at AuthorCentral.Amazon.com? Is your book listed on Amazon ? Are you using Listmania and all the tools possible on Amazon? Are you listed at other online bookstores? Have you signed up for the Author Programs at review sites like GoodReads, LibraryThing and RedRoom? Is your book listed there?
Big 4 Social Networks:
- (10 pts possible) Google +: Do you have a Google + profile? Is it connected to essential Google Authorship? Do you have the word Author prominent in your About Me section? Is your author brand clearly stated? How many of your audience is circling you (not total number, but how many potential book buyers on you and your topic)
- (10 pts possible) LinkedIn: Do you have a profile on LinkedIn, have you reached 500 in your network, have you joined maximum 50 groups/communities?
- (10 pts possible) Facebook: Is your Facebook fan page set up? Does it clearly show your brand and book? Are you posting to it? Getting Comments?
- (10 pts possible) Twitter: Do you have a Twitter profile? Does it clearly state your author brand and book? Do you post regularly? Are you finding your readers to make them aware of your book?
9. (10 pts possible) Book web site: Do you have a dedicated book web site? Does it show your book cover? Does it show your author brand and clear statement of what your book is about?
Author Brand Programs
10.(5 pts possible) Articles, Audio, Video: Do you have articles or guest blogs? Do you have audio clips, appear on others’ podcasts, radio? Do you have any video attached to your work such as book trailer or interviews posted?
11.(5 pts possible) Teach, Train, Speak: Do you have places where you “appear” on the web or in person? Webinars, workshops, training, local speaking?
100 On Track, continue building engagement
90 Fuel Injection needed, add final locations
70-80 Tune-up needed, add locations, attract readers
50-60 Starting gate, dedicate daily time to build up locations and readers
50 below Build or Rebuild needed, start now!
As a literary agent creating publishing contracts every week, I work up front with authors to create a book proposal that will entice a publisher to make a bid and offer the contract. I work together with authors on the basis of an idea, a proposal, and a promise. The full manuscript is not already written. We work with an overview and with faith at the beginning. We have to create a structure for the elements of the manuscript to fill out later; and we also have to create a structure for the author platform so that a publisher can measure how well a book would sell.
I’m on the look-out for the next great book idea, and seeking the proposal and the platform to support it. Please send questions and comments in the Reply box below!