Seth Godin thinks so:
In Godin’s view, the emphasis on building author platforms has gone too far. If so many authors now approach social media as a part of their jobs in the digital era, it’s at least partly thanks to their publishers, who have assiduously told them it is.
As have a great many others.
But does it really work? From a talk at the Digital Book World 2015 conference this morning:
For one thing, that can make it hard to build a following, Godin says, and for another, doing so isn’t just about driving engagement on social channels, anyway.
Establishing and maintaining a loyal audience is by its nature a long-term investment, and what loyalty looks like online can sometimes differ considerably from what it looks like offline, “where the real work” gets done.
I’ve previously offered my thoughts in this vein.
I’m not sure I agree author platforms are unnecessary or pointless, but I think Godin is 100% right that they’re not an end in themselves. Bottom line, you’ve still got to write good stuff.
FWIW: Godin has a pretty impressive platform.
FWIW2: I came across the DBW piece in my Twitter feed.