I recently posted a Facebook question to 5,000 followers and asked the question: What is the first criteria in your choice of reading material: author, genre, or reputation of the review source?
The results weren’t even close. Out of almost 200 responses, the results were these:
Genre = 60%
Author = 25%
Review = 2%
Equally all three = 2%
Other = 11%
OTHER meant people didn’t choose via author, genre or review, and instead chose by cover, whim of the moment, length, large print availability, writing style, the first three pages, the last page, setting, or anything else.
As for me? Definitely genre first, then author. I will resort to looking at reviews once I’m pondering the choice.
This simple survey shows that you need to understand your product and market it appropriately. You do not market your book just anywhere, with just anyone. You market it where you think people in your genre will collect, review, and share.
I’m frequently asked if an author may advertise their book in my newsletters. I refuse…unless the book is written directed at writers. Why? Because my readers are writers by trade. They are not seeking romance, science fiction or young adult. They want nonfiction about how to write better and market better. FundsforWriters is one of those places where they collect.
There’s truth in the mantra “know your market.” It’s how Coke, Nike, and Amazon do so well. You know all those little ads you see on Facebook? Ever marvel how you open a website and they know the last sites where you shopped? That’s marketing to the customer. That’s companies attempting to understand your ways. That’s how you need to think.
When you cease writing that book, and it’s time to market it for sale, stop and contemplate where those readers are. It’s why BookBub and Amazon are so darn efficient. They know what you think and put products before your eyes that they’ve researched and know you will love.
Facebook, blogs, BookBub, any advertising….lead with genre. Stick to genre. Make your ad feel like your genre. Make your website seem like your genre. You can do this.
BIO – C. Hope Clark is editor of FundsforWriters.com and author of the Carolina Slade Mysteries and The Edisto Island Mysteries. www.chopeclark.com