Writing the jigsaw puzzle ExpandedJoin Washington Romance Writers on Saturday, February 11, 2017, when we host Michael Hennessey to discuss developing your author brand.

A brand is a promise. It builds anticipation and defines expectations for its audiences. It may flirt vivaciously and suggestively, but a successful brand must always deliver on its promise. As an author, you are your own brand. So how do you begin?

During this all-day session, we will demystify what a brand is and explore how to create your own author brand. Through a series of hands-on exercises and interactive workshops, you will be given the tools and framework to build your author brand from scratch by revealing its core attributes, crafting your own brand story, and discovering ways to convey your unique brand to its different audiences. By the end of the day, every participant will have created the core of their own author brand.

Shirlington Branch of the Arlington Public Library
4200 Campbell Ave.
Arlington, Virginia 22206

10:00-10:30 Networking and Announcements
10:30-12:30 Morning Session
12:30-2:00 Lunch
2:00-4:00 Afternoon Session

Morning Session / 10:30 am – 12:30 pm

• Opening Discussion – “You are your own brand.”
– Introductory discussion of what a brand is, how it creates expectation and anticipation in your audiences, examples of author brands that are successful

• Creating Your Core Brand Essence and Supporting Attributes
– Working sessions and exercises designed to uncover each author’s own unique brand attributes, define and refine them into a core set of brand attributes

• Questions / Discussion on Core Brand Attributes
– Open discussion and questions on branding, using attributes, takeaways for thought prior to afternoon session

Afternoon Session / 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

• Generating Audience Personas
– Exercises designed to help define and personify your audiences, readers, publishers, editors, bloggers, etc.

• Create Your “Elevator Pitch / Brand Story”
– Crafting your unique “brand story” to talk to each of your audience personas

• Visualizing the Brand
– Discussion on ways to use visual attributes (type, imagery, color) as part of your author brand

About Our Guest
Michael Hennessey is a professional graphic designer with 20 years of experience, 13 of those years in Washington, DC. He has a diverse background of experience in many aspects of graphic design, with deep roots in branding, brand strategy, corporate identity development and years of experience with both traditional and digital media in design agency and advertising agency settings.

For the past 6 years, Michael has been active as a freelance creative director with his own firm, Hennessey Design, LLC. He offers graphic design and brand strategy services to a wide variety of clients from small and medium size businesses to non-profit associations and also provides creative support for area design, advertising and public relations firms with regional and national clients. Michael works with individuals – as well as corporations – in strategizing, creating and implementing their brands, building brand awareness and developing brand campaigns.

Michael is an active member of the AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Artists) and he donates graphic design services for a number of charitable organizations on a regular basis. He currently lives with his wife Heather, son Brian and their two cats in Winchester, Virginia.