Tuesday 1 March 2016

Defining My Target Market

Image: Wikimedia Commons

There's been a lot of talk lately about how authors need to start thinking of themselves as businesses. Part of that, of course, is identifying our target market (and defining that market as clearly as possible), so we know who we're marketing and selling to.

When I wrote my first book (A Petition to Magic), I just wanted to tell a story - I really wasn't considering how I planned to make money off it. It was the same with my second book (Heritage of Deceit) and indeed, my third (Stingers). Billy's Zombie was much the same.

When I was putting together my fifth (Heaven and Earth: Paranormal Flash Fiction), I spared a token thought to the kind of person I would expect to read it, but still, not much more than that.

Now, with it being a bit of a "hot topic", I've been thinking seriously about who exactly my target market is.

Personally, I like to read in a wide range of genres. I've read everything from thrillers to mysteries, romance, drama, horror, and fantasy. I prefer my horror and fantasy, so that's what I read most often, but my tastes really run the gamut.

I write in a wide range of genres, too. Therefore, my target market, like me, are people who read all over the map.

I also tend not to really enjoy series - all of my current offerings are standalone. Coming soon, I have a collection of flash fiction stories set in the same world as A Petition to Magic. Technically, I suppose it's part of a series, but it's very episodic: some of the stories take place before the events in A Petition to Magic, some after, and some overlap.

Finally, I write shorter works - my longest work is a long novelette (at just over ten thousand words), and I don't see myself writing anything longer than a mid-length novella any time soon.

So, my target market are people to like to read a wide range of different genres, generally prefer standalones, and like their stories quick - get in, tell the story, get out, without too much fluff.

What do you think? Is that clearly defined enough for you?

Do you fit into that target market? And if so, do you feel that my marketing efforts speak to the things that you're interested in?

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