Choosing Your Target Audience


Who is your target audience?

This is a question I ask authors when I start working on their book, and all too often I get an answer that sounds something  like this: Everyone.

Everyone. So, your book will be loved by all, from a five-year-old to a ninety-year-old? Male and female? Fantasy and non-fiction lover?

As wonderful as that would be, the truth is: you need to know who you’re writing for. How can you expect to pitch a book to an agent or sell a book to a reader if you don’t have a specific idea of the group that will enjoy your book the most?

Of course, just because you have a niche doesn’t mean you will occasionally find readers outside that audience. But you want to know your niche so you can focus on reaching that specific group. Those readers will be your bread and butter, so to speak. It’s the principle of focusing on less readers so you can ultimately find more. 

The inevitable truth is that not everyone will want to read your book. Shocking, I know. This is just a fact of life and shouldn’t make you feel bad. It has been said that reading a book is like making a friend, and just like in life, you aren’t going to be friends with everyone. That’s okay. What you want to do is figure out who you do want to be friends with and focus on reaching those people.

So the next time someone asks you who your target audience is, don’t say everyone. Research your genre; know what types of people like certain books; and when you get closer to the publishing stage, research literary agents. Did you know that literary agents don’t accept EVERY type of book? There are specific agents who look for specific genres. That’s another reason why, if you want to publish your book the traditional way, you need to know who you’re writing for, and you need to know your target audience. It’s really as simple as that.

Are you writing a book?
Who is your target audience?

3 thoughts on “Choosing Your Target Audience

  1. Amanda, I like the post. Good advice about specifying the audience. Forcing myself to answer this question is going to help focus two of my stories.
    Question for you. Shouldn’t it be “fewer readers”?

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