Your "author persona" or "image online" is going to follow you wherever you are, whether it be online or in your personal life. Which is why you need to keep it clean.
What is a Persona?A persona, (also user persona, customer persona, buyer persona) in user-centered design and marketing is a fictional character created to represent a user type that might use a site, brand, or product in a similar way. Marketers may use personas together with market segmentation, where the qualitative personas are constructed to be representative of specific segments. The term persona is used widely in online and technology applications as well as in advertising, where other terms such as pen portraits may also be used.
As you can see from the above definition of a persona authors, writers and artists in general have always had a persona to present to the public. Their persona is used in interviews, and when they're doing personal appearances online and in public. Life before the internet was very different for authors because they didn't have to use it that much, maybe the odd interview or public talk, but it wasn't something that was called upon all of the time.
Age of the Internet
In the internet age it's with you all of the time, which means you have to be on your guard at all times. Especially when you're online because people pick up on things really quickly and sense things even when you think no one is reading your work, people are always looking out for things they can pick fault at.
Your Persona and Brand are Interdependent
To put it simply:
Your name is your brand, but it's not the real you.
Your persona is a mantle you wear, it's the persona you've chosen that matches with your brand, but it's for the public.
Every author and personality has a persona, and only those closest to them know the real person.Your Persona Should Be Reliable at all Times
You're probably thinking why can't I just be myself out there online and in public?
The simple answer is yes you can be yourself, but only up to a certain point.
You are the face of your writing and people don't know the real you. They do see your blog and social media posts, but they don't want to know what you had for breakfast or if you're having a really bad day.
Oversharing can really harm book sales and your profile online. Getting too personal can be really creepy and will turn your audience off. You need to be mindful, friendly and professionally towards your readers.
You don't need to tell people every last detail about your private life. You should only share what is necessary and no more.
Some simple tips to get you started.
1. Take a professional selfie.
2. You only need one persona.
3. Create your own blog.
4. Stay within your brand limit.
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