Building the Bridge: 4 Steps to Finding Your Audience

sunset-485016_960_720

When the right book falls into the right hands, magic happens. Skills are learned, problems are solved, afternoons are filled with entertainment—even revolutions are born. Question is, how do you make this magic happen?

Getting your book into the right hands is one of the biggest challenges in publishing today. The web has opened up an unprecedented flood of content. Much of it resides in giant online storefronts, with your book hidden among the countless choices. How can you get it within reach of the readers who would love it, would benefit from it, and can’t wait to share it with the world?

Big-time authors already have their own communities of enthusiastic readers. But most authors and publishers don’t. Our solution: Build bridges to preexisting communities with related interests. Ganxy empowers authors and publishers to do this by providing the software to showcase their books on all different channels.

In this post, we’ll take you through the steps that our most successful publishers and authors have successfully used over and over again to find the right audience-book match.

1) Where to Begin: Determine Your Book’s Distinctive Features narrative-794978_1920

Identify two or three features of your book that make it stand out from other books in the same genre. These hooks are what will help you determine your book’s audience, which may actually only be a small portion of the genre’s readers.

Is it a mystery novel filled with exotic cuisine that might be marketed to culinarians? Is it a romance novel with paranormal elements that might appeal to ghost enthusiasts? Also note the locations your book is set in, the personalities and education of the main characters, historical and architectural elements, and so forth.

Though your book is likely one of hundreds readers can choose from, some will nonetheless see it as the perfect book—if you can tell them why. A great example comes from Barry Eisler, who focused on three hooks—judo, jazz, and Japan—to market his first novel Rain Fall to niche audiences interested in any or all of them. (The team at Ganxy suggests you read his essay for more steps to finding the “Judo, Jazz, and Japan” of your book!) As Barry says, “Stop wondering about who will want to buy your book, and start asking about who will want to buy what’s IN the book.”

2) What to Do Next: Research, Research, Research

Now, put yourself in the shoes of those readers interested in the distinctive features you’ve identified in your book.

  • What blogs and influencers do they follow? You can provide their readers with a limited number of free copies of your book.
  • What conferences do they attend? Your eBook can be purchased by conference organizers to give to attendees.
  • What newsletters do they read? See if your book can be listed there.
  • What locations do they visit? If your book features a well-known coffeeshop, you may be able to sell your EBook there as a Ganxy Card.

sherlock_cards

This is a great place for brainstorming, google searches, and thinking strategically about who is looking for your book’s distinctive elements. Foodies with a taste for mystery mentioned in Step 1, for example, might be reading culinary blogs and attending murder-mystery weekends. And what about nonfiction? If your book tackles environmental issues, you could compile a list of environmental nonprofits. As you research further, organize your findings into a spreadsheet including publication, contacts, contact info, and why your book is a great fit.

3) How to Use Your Research: Build the Bridge blogpostimage

After you’ve determined your book’s unique features and located a suitable readership, it’s time to create an offer that will excite interest. The good news is that high-profile bloggers and other trendsetters have a never-ending hunger for well-crafted, fresh content that their followers will like.In order to build bridges with people who can help your books reach a wider audience, you can:

  • Communicate your book’s outstanding features up front. Ganxy’s attractive showcase makes this easy to do.
  • Give a good deal to the bloggers, influencers, other trendsetters and let them gift a good deal to their followers. Ganxy Nested Campaigns give you many ways to do this.
    • a ) Nest your showcase in a partner blog and split the revenue with the blogger. We offer an independent report of transactions that lets you settle revenue shares with your partners.
    • b ) Gift a fixed number of free copies to the first readers who download, while the rest receive your book at a discount.
    • c ) Offer a time-based discount, with a reduced price for a certain number of days or hours.
    • d ) Team up with other authors to combine your readerships.
    • e ) Produce a fresh product by activating your backlist and using book bundles.
  • Make it easy for the bloggers, influencers, and trendsetters to help by giving them instructions, links, and codes to embed your showcase. If someone can’t embed your showcase, give them your book’s cover image with a direct link to your showcase.

For example, one publisher with a showcase on Ganxy has a large science fiction list, so the marketing arm reached out to bloggers on a technology, futurism, and science fiction site with a revenue share offer. Another publisher focuses on business books. Its biggest sales have come from managers at large corporations, who purchase them in bulk for their employees.

4) Many Rivers to Cross: Track Your Efforts and Follow Up

When your sales pick up, you’ve still got work to do. Ganxy offers you easy-to-use methods to determine if your marketing efforts are leading to sales. We also provide you with the means to follow up by changing your campaigns if they aren’t producing the sales you hoped for or by creating new ones. Additionally, with the tools at Ganxy . . .

  • You can see which countries your readers come from and direct your marketing efforts there or work harder to draw interest from elsewhere to expand your sales.
  • When you run promotions with our campaigns you can tell in real time as people download your book.
  • Your readers can opt in to your community, so you can reach out to them the next time you publish a book. Repeat customers are the best kind, since they help you with word-of-mouth recommendations.

At Ganxy, we believe the process of finding your readers and sharing your work with them is an essential part of a healthy book community. It creates a symbiotic relationship. When authors and publishers can easily communicate with their readership, they can profit from their work and keep producing more books that readers want. When authors and publishers partner with influencers and trendsetters, even more readers can discover your book, making more magic happen.

Screenshot 2016-05-31 at 4.36.36 PM

Do you need help with any of these four steps? Say hi at tara@ganxy.com to get on our list for a free coaching session!

If you have questions about how to enable a specific feature on your showcase, we’re just an email away at info@ganxy.com and would be happy to help you.

Subscribe to this blog and get future posts emailed to you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *