Finding Your Audience IRL

Everyone knows you can use social media to find readers, but how do you find your perfect customer in real life? 

You are a writer. You used to thinking like someone else. So, and today is well post we’re going to experiment with thinking like your reader. 

Most writers  are also voracious readers. Even if you don’t read as much as you used to back then, I’m sure you still have an idea of what to do if you want to look for a new book. Maybe you would ask your friends, or go to the library, or go to the website of one of your favorite authors see if they’ve published anything new.You might see books at at the grocery check out, the bookstore, or coffee shop. 

Try this exercise. Close your eyes. Imagine you are your IDEAL READER (which, side note, you probably should be anyway because you need to know your genre in order to write a good book and market it well. But that’s another post for another day.). As a reader, what do you do in a typical day or week? Where do you go when you’re off work?  Most importantly, how do you find new books?If you are your ideal audience, the way you find books will likely be the way your audience will find you.W

Marketing Ideas

The most effective form of marketing is word-of-mouth, or getting a recommendation from a friend. In order for this to happen though, you need name recognition.  Potential readers need to know that you and your book exists. You can get name recognition started by being where those who read your genre go. Say a Renaissance Fair.  A comic book store. Gaming convention. You can do a pop up book store and give out swag. If you write romance, why not a wedding expo? Romance books and related merchandise might make perfect bridesmaids gifts. What about other genres? If there’s a big music concert or festival in your area, you can hand out swag there.  Wrote a cookbook? Sell it at a farmer’s market. Get you book where your potential readers will be IRL. 

Let’s brainstorm a bit.  Let’s start with you. What genres are you into?  Where are the places you go on a regular basis? Are those places where people who like the same genres likely to go?  For example, I go to the grocery store on a regular basis. I’m into women’s fiction, fantasy, historical novels, and nonfiction. At the grocery store, the people who go there may be more likely to be into women’s fiction and historical novels than fantasy and nonfiction.  In the comments below, why not try that exercise? Start with yourself. Then think about the genre your book is in. Or post it on Instagram or Twitter and tag me. Instagram @michelleraabwrites, and Twitter @michelleraabwr1.  

Line editor Claerie Kavanaugh.

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