Targeting Markets

February 2009
by Patricia Fry

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Targeting Markets

by Patricia Fry

You know that no book is “for everyone,” and every book must have at least one target market. But how do you define it?

Very simply, it’s that group of people who are most likely to purchase a particular book. These are the individuals the book’s information is for, or the ones its story aims to entertain. They might be the parents, grandparents, and educators of small children who live in fatherless homes. They might be men and women who want to know more about skin cancer treatments. They might be people who love historical fiction set in the pioneer days, parents who have lost a child, young adults, folks who like war memoirs, or hopeful authors who want to know how to successfully produce and promote a book.

Most books also have a secondary audience—people who will read the book for reasons that are not central to it. For example, some might pick up a novel featuring a pilot because someone they know is a pilot; folks who aren’t into cooking or cookbooks may buy one because they’ve invited a date or their new in-laws over for dinner. Also, a book may have a peripheral audience—people who don’t fit the target demographic, but who will purchase a book on a whim or as a gift, for example.

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