Few authors LOVE marketing. I do, but developing that mindset wasn’t easy. Initially, I hated marketing. This was odd, because I’m copywriter who adores marketing and writing advertising copy for others, but I disliked doing that for my own work. Go figure. 🙂 My solution; treat myself as a client. It worked.
Your challenge: you’ve tried marketing your book, and weren’t too happy with the results. Alternatively, you’ve given up on marketing before you even started, because it all seems too complicated.
There’s a solution: niche marketing. What’s a niche market? According to Wikipedia, it’s:
A niche market is the subset of the market on which a specific product is focused.
Niche marketing: you’re writing nonfiction
Let’s see how this works if you’re writing nonfiction. You’ve written an ebook about time management for business people. Your overall market is business people. However, that’s a very broad market.
You could niche your market down into:
- Business people operating startups;
- Women in business;
- Specific vertical markets (that is, business people in an industry, or profession.)
The beauty of niche marketing is that you can target niches which appeal to you. If you’ve worked in finance, you could target that niche, because you know how those people think. Similarly, if you’ve just taken maternity leave, you could target business people with children.
Your potential niches are unlimited.
Niche marketing: you’re writing fiction
What if you’re writing fiction? Let’s say you’ve just written a gothic novel, set in 1830s England. How could you target niche markets with your novel?
Your overall market is people who read fiction. A subset (niche) of fiction readers is historical fiction readers, and another niche which applies to your novel is readers of horror fiction.
How do you find those readers, and engage with them, to make them aware of your novel? One way would be to use goodreads, which has reader groups for many different kinds of niches.
A tip: be careful with goodreads. Many readers on that site have a decided dislike of authors who promote their own books. Spend time reading the group you’ve chosen. Then be wary about overtly promoting.
Niche marketing fiction can be a challenge. Here’s what’s working for my students: collaboration on marketing.
Collaborate with other authors to market your fiction
Whether you’re writing fiction or nonfiction, your primary aim is to turn anyone hearing about your book into a buyer and reader. Next, you want to turn those readers into enthusiastic fans of your writing.
You can’t do this overnight. Readers need to fall in love with your books. That love starts with exposure, and with interest. You can only expose readers to more of your writing if you can get them onto a mailing list, to let them know when you’ve published something new.
Lately, I’ve been hearing: “Mailing lists don’t work!” My response is always: “how are you using your list?” People don’t want to be sold to. They want to be informed, and entertained. If you can do those two things, you’ll sell books. Of course your readers don’t want endless messages: “Please buy my book.”
Remember: exposure, and interest. Gaining exposure and interest is easier for fiction authors when they do it with other authors.
If you’re writing gothic novels, get together with other authors of gothic novels, and do group promotions. You could:
- Sell bundles of short stories, with links to your website included;
- Buy advertising for your group;
- Set up a Facebook page for your group — and buy advertising for that.
For a lone author, promoting novels is a real slog. You can do it, and some authors do it brilliantly, but it’s easier when you promote as a group of writers in a particular genre.
Give niche marketing a try. It’s a fun way to market, because it offers endless possibilities and opportunities.
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How to profit from your writing: online store.
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