What if an editor of a Sports Magazine asked me to write an article on football?  Instead, I submitted a piece on how to decorate a bedroom.

Or what if I entered a writing contest and the genre was horror, but I sent in an inspirational piece?

Guess what? My readers would probably scratch their heads and not finish reading my wonderful story. Gulp. I hate to admit this, but I fell into that trap. When I started writing, I thought I could just write the story and anyone who read it would fall in love with it. But I hadn’t defined my target audience. Knowing my audience does five things:

  • If my novel is for everyone, it’s for no one. So I need to ensure I have a clear picture of who my readers are. My readers are between the ages of twelve and eighteen.
  • Do my readers know a lot about my subject or will they depend on me to inform them? My novel takes place in the Philippines. So I’d better know everything I can or an older teen reader will be sure to scoff if I’m wrong about the details. But the twelve year-old may be like a sponge and just soak up every word I write. I hope.
  • What is my reader’s belief system? An atheist probably won’t read my inspirational novel.
  • Will I save time? You bet. I won’t have to rewrite my novel.
  • Will my writing get rejected? That’s a given. If I pitch my novel aimed at the right readers I  may nab a great agent or a publisher    

So before you start writing your next novel or article, you’d better know who your target audience is.

I would love to know what tips you have to offer in order to define your target audience.

How To Define Your Target Audience


2 responses »

  1. Deb was encouraged to clearly define her target audience. When she did, it meant giving the book we’re co-authoring a slightly different slant. Knowing the audience helps with the writing, but it also helps when approaching agents, publishers, and places to market the book.

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