googlead166c37c697d4d3.html Glenn Ashton Author Blog: Authors, what Your Readers need from You to buy Your books


Thursday, April 23, 2015

Authors, what Your Readers need from You to buy Your books

There are lessons to be learned from opinions of readers in various surveys, and the 2012 survey gives some good ones for self-published authors.

In the 2012 survey of readers of historical fiction, the finding was this:
In the 2012 historical fiction survey, 562 people listed favourite reading oriented websites, blogs and social media sites. The winners in connecting readers with books share three attributes:
  • thoughtful, trustworthy information about books,
  • opportunities for dialogue and an exchange of ideas, and
  • a community of like-minded readers.
If you write historical fiction, this finding from the 2012 survey should give you some hope, if you are a beginning self-published author:

Elsewhere in the survey, participants said that they choose books based on time period (27.2%) and on genre (30.3%). Only 18.3% choose based on author while the remaining 24.2% choose at random. Based on these percentages, it’s not surprising that historical fiction readers seek help to find stories from the time periods and genres they favour.

So, if you are relatively unknown as an author, you can still find readers based on the time period and genre. And almost a quarter of the readers bought at random.

But from this base you could connect more easily with your target readers and build your author brand, if you had a marketing plan aimed at these objectives. You can find such an easy to use promotion plan in my book Small Steps to Bigger Book Sales, and if you fill in the sign up form on the right, you will receive a free bonus copy of my marketing plan template (plus lots of other items for serious writers).

Here are some other survey findings that you should consider:

The data suggest a number of conclusions:
  • Historical fiction readers love to share their book reading experiences with others. Many create blogs as a venue for sharing.
  • Readers are proactive in their pursuit of good books.
  • Reading is a social event; readers like to talk to other readers about books.
  • Readers prefer to rely on trusted communities for recommendations.
  • Though readers buy online in large numbers, they prefer other sources for recommendations.
  • Big book review sites are not intimate enough for readers.
  • Readers do not identify with publishing houses.
What lessons can you learn from these findings? How can you capitalize on this valuable market information? Do you think – as I do – that these findings are useful to writers in genres other than historical fiction?

And how exactly – without a professional, easy to use, and really well designed marketing plan – do you expect to meet the needs of your target readers: the ones I have bolded in red above?

You really should spend $4 for the eBook version of Small Steps to Bigger Book Sales, and consider buying the printed copy for less than $15. Are you not worth this much, as a writer? It would be an investment in yourself.


Once you’ve bought Small Steps to Bigger Book Sales why not join my Facebook group Small Steps Plan Group to have a conversation with other authors who have also joined that group and are starting their journey to better marketing of themselves and their books using their own Small Steps Plans? You will find the new group here.

I look forward to many conversations with you!

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