Ah, but apparently there are categories of said people. Young, old, middle grade, young adult, senior citizen, male, female, divorced, widowed, married, married for the umpteenth time, educated, not-so-well educated, the categories stretch on and on; in fact, if you type out all the categories in 12-point, Times Roman font, the line will stretch approximately three-quarters of the way from Washington D.C. to Toronto, Ontario. Yes, well…
My three-book series is historical fiction and, faced with describing my audience, I thought I’d check out the Internet for some help. I asked it how to find my target audience and I found lots of things, some of them even close to what I needed. But I didn’t really find exactly what I wanted. At Do Something U, I found a marketing post which promised to help and parts of it, I’ve used below.
Branding, a big buzz word these days, is apparently necessary for us writers. Become known for what you do and, if you are really clever, choose a word or phrase that becomes synonymous with your product (book). Most important, that brand should appeal to the people that you want to reach. Well, who are they? Who are the people who read historical fiction? What are their characteristics?
These 5 questions will help me determine just who might buy my historical fiction books. (Substitute your genre here if you like.)
- Age: What is the age range of the population who read historical fiction? My guess is 18-98.
- Gender: Which gender would be most interested in historical fiction? I’ve heard that females are most interested.
- Income: What is the income level of my potential readers? Well, they have to be able to afford books, don’t they? Guess I’ll have to look up some numbers here.
- Education: What level of education do they have? Oh, I’m sure they are at least high school grads but most should be college or university graduates. Then I’ll be sure they can read. (Oh, that is too snarky! Sorry.)
- Marital Status: What is their marital or family status? I guess I have to go looking for the answer to this one. Single women might want to live vicariously through my heroes, but then they’ll probably be reading romance. Married women might want to escape, too. I really need to research here.
Okay, before I get a whole lot of angry comments, I’m just kidding. Well, not about the research and its necessity, but about my answers.
You might now wonder why I chose the title I did. I was just feeling a little frustrated about the whole marketing thing and wondered which I’d rather be doing: selling my books or writing them.
What is your view? Consider leaving a comment, tongue-in-cheek or not, expressing it.