Building Your Public Platform Series Public Relations for the Author–Part 5
Do you know who your reader will be? Beyond your family and close friends? I have had most first-time authors come to me and say, “My book is for everybody.” This is rarely the case.
To create a public platform, it will be very important to know who your audience is and who you are writing your message to. Here are some steps to take to determine who the target market is for your book:
- First, start off by identifying your target consumer of your book. Is this person male or female? What is their age? Is he/she married? Do they have children? Where do they live?
This can look like: I am writing about how to raise a child that will not boomerang, move back home, as an adult. My target audience is the female reader over 45. Males would be a secondary audience. These females will be married, divorced and single. They have at least one adult child, over the age of 21. They live in the United States and possibly Canada.
- Then think through and answer the following questions:
- What are they challenged with?
- What problems do they need to solve?
- What are their goals and values?
- Where are they getting their source of information?
This can look like: I am writing to parents of foster children. They are challenged with children who have multiple emotional problems and some may have physical problems. Their biological kids may have difficulty accepting the new sibling. They need help to figure out how to blend their family with as little stress as possible. They value family and their goal is to have a loving household. They get their information from websites that cater to foster parents, seminars for fostering and church.
- Another thing you can do is solicit friends and family. You can email them with these lists of question tailored to your topic or put a question up on your Facebook page.
- Lastly, research. Once you know the profile of your reader, you will want to research the reader’s habit. Take note where the congregate online. See what they are buying. Find out where they get their information. In your research, you will want to also find out who your competition is and what they are doing to sell their books. You will need to search and see how well their books are selling. Here are some good places to gather information:
Once you have this information, you can make a profile about who your target market is. You will know what they like, where they meet/congregate, and how they like to receive their messages and news. You will be able to use this information to help inform you on the next steps, creating the written plan.