On my way to the theater, I felt confident that when I watched Delivery Man it would be a fun comedy with a main character who grows as a person. Leaving the theater, I was glad I hadn't been disappointed. After watching several Vince Vaughn comedies, I feel I know his brand. I find comfort in knowing I won't be wasting my hard-earned money choosing one of his films.
Authors often complain about publishers wanting to brand their books. They feel their creative energy is stifled when they are placed into a mold. I understand that feeling. I published a short story, a fractured fairy-tale, that is far different than my usual mysteries; but I understand how consumers feel too. When they purchase an author's book, they want to know they won't be disappointed. Fans return to Nora Roberts time and time again because they know they are buying a well-written romance with a happy ending earned through trial and tribulation. The settings and characters may change, but the major elements of a romance are still there.
Authors need to decide for themselves if they want to brand their work. If not, how will they handle writing various types of books? Some authors use different pseudonyms for each genre they write and some place various tabs on their websites categorizing their work. Will book blurbs be enough to inform the consumer of what they are purchasing?
It's something to think about.