I read an article on branding this weekend. It seems you should have a personal brand-three words that describe your personality. An industry brand-three words that describe how you want industry pros to view you and finally a product brand-three words to describe what kind of stories you write. Branding is a new buzz phrase. Think of it as goal setting or a mission statement. By thinking about branding, you are really setting up the parameters of 1) how you see yourself 2) how you want the people you work for to see you and 3) how you want people to see your work.
What good is all this? It simply provides a framework for how you act- how your e-mails are written, what kind of marketing you do, what kind of stories you tell, speaking engagements, etc. The framework of a brand helps you set boundaries and feel comfortable knowing-well, I do this not that. I'm this not that. I am comfortable with this not that.
Some people worry that their brand is set in stone- it's not. Just because you write westerns now doesn't mean you can't write mysteries later-think about what it is about your writing voice that will be found consistently in westerns or mysteries. You have your product brand. Now you need to make sure that's the message your website sends out. Not so hard after all, is it?