Friday, April 3, 2009

Find Your Niche Market Before Publishing
by Lisa Pelto

“Everybody” is not a niche. When I speak to the author of a new book, I always ask them “Who Cares”? It’s not meant to be a rude question. If you can’t identify WHO your book will appeal to, don't waste your time and money publishing it. (Note: I didn’t say you shouldn’t write your book, you should; I mean you may not want to spend the money publishing it. That's the BIG question, kids.)

Be able to identify who your book buyer is (not necessarily who the reader is). Frankly, as a micropublisher, the buyer is more important than the reader. Why? One of the best markets for independently published books is actually the person who is buying a book for someone else. Steve Farner, author of Hey! I'm the Manager...Why Aren't You Listening to Me? describes how he found his niche:

"My book evolved from my management seminars and keynote talks. I had key stories, theories and concepts that I used in my speeches. Writing my book allowed me to hone my speaking skills by clarifying details of my stories. By putting things in writing, I was able to find clearer, more succinct ways to tell my story, and thus improve my entire product set. Now my major audience is corporations who are training their managers."

More questions you must ask yourself:

  • Are you willing to share your expertise with enough detail and
    clarity to make the product valuable to your buyer?
  • Are your target buyers willing to see you as the expert in whatever
    field you choose to write?
  • Are your target buyers willing to shell out $20 for it?
  • Does it fill a need currently not filled in the genre?
  • What features can you add to make it fit the niche?
  • How will you reach buyers once identified?

Lisa Pelto, President
Concierge Marketing
and Publishing Services

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