Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Know Your Audience: Wait...Who the Heck is My Audience?

As we've stated in past posts, it's unrealistic to think that everyone on the planet will love (and buy) your book.  Yup - as your mother may have told you, "You can't please everyone, dear."  BUT, you can seek to create goo-gobs of shear delight for a target audience.

In no way are we suggesting that you bend and twist your work into some arbitrary mold to please a small group of people.  Write your books from your heart, be yourself, and use your true voice.  However, don't be disappointed when your conservative associates aren't interested in reading about your robotic werewolf's demon possessed love child.

So, who is your audience?  Another way to phrase this question is: Who is your ideal reader?

Maybe your ideal reader (customer) is:

     A 20-something, college grad, fashionista


     A 14 - 18 year old, young adult, urban, female


     A 40-something, no nonsense, career woman

Notice there is an age associated with each audience above.  Why is age important?  Well - age is one trait you can use to:
  • find your audience's natural habitat (Where can you find them online or in the real world?)
  • know what music they will relate to (Beatles or Mumford & Sons)
  • identify images that will catch their attention (pink skulls or Prada)
Of course, age is only one component of your ideal reader's profile.  Other traits to consider are:
  • hobbies and interests (horse back riding, gaming, motorcycles, shopping, gardening)
  • location (urban, suburban, rural)
  • education level (high school, college, graduate school)

Ideal Reader = Target Audience = Target Demographic

For this week's Wednesday Workshop, we challenge you to consider: "Who is my ideal reader?" and write a quick, one paragraph, profile statement.  Once you've identified your target audience, you will be able to focus your marketing efforts.

Defining your ideal reader doesn't mean that you won't attract people from other demographics.  Your ideal reader is your primary audience.  Members of other demographics are your secondary audience.  Focus on your primary audience to save time, money, and energy.

As the old saying goes: "You attract more flies with honey than vinegar."  First, you have to know that you want to attract flies...then honey is a no brainer.

Any marketing questions can be posed in the comments on any post. If you have a question, others will too, so we can address our answers to all. Our posts are myths and tips we want to share but we love to target our answers to specific questions.

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