Have you ever been asked for your marketing hook and intended readership? Was your reaction the same as mine? A blank stare, a few blinks, and a flurry of emails sent to everyone I knew who'd ever been published. LOL
Here are some of the things I've learned since. Authors, please feel free to chime in! This is a wide area for coverage and your feedback is valuable to us all.
Basically, this is a tool that creates AIDA: Attention, Interest, Desire, Action. Let me demonstrate by pointing you to an author website that uses it well, my friend Shayla Kersten. Here is her welcome page.
A hook is what entices the reader to take a step further. A hook for a novel may be as simple as a tag or blurb. Or it could be a phrase, such as Ellora's Cave's line, "Feed your Romantica craving".This ain't your momma's romance novel!
From the torn bodice novels to no bodice at all, erotic romance kicks up the spice. Once upon a time, all the good stuff in a romance stayed behind closed doors but erotic romance opens the bedroom, or the living room, the bathroom... Well, you get the picture.
No euphemisms, no mincing words, today's erotic romance takes you through the trials, tribulations and sexual escapades of your hero and heroine. Or your hero and hero!
So if you like your romance hot, this is the place to start!
Welcome to the Erotic Romances of Shayla Kersten!
INTENDED READERSHIP / TARGETED AUDIENCE
Simply put, this is who you believe is going to buy this book once it's published. Just as you wouldn't submit a manuscript about racecar drivers to a cookbook publisher, your publisher doesn't want to market their books to the wrong demographic either. They want to know who you think will be the main buyers. Publishers want to make money, so the more you know about who your target audience is, the more they can help you reach it.
Ask yourself these questions:
- What are the themes of your book?
- If you were going to promote it on the yahoo groups, which groups would you choose?
- What age bracket suits this book?
- Does it take place in a specific area (like Wyoming, NYC, Asia) where readers in that proximity would take notice?
- Is it a niche genre (like Science Fiction) which would interest a specific group of readers?
NOTE: Your readership will determine your marketing slant. Again, think cookbooks and racecars. If you've written a cookbook for tailgate parties to NASCAR races - then you have a crossover genre book.
I write Science Fiction Romance - so there are two genres. Tack on Erotica and you get an entirely new crowd. My books also involve a political system, deal with genetics, have gay characters, and champion those whose rights are being trampled because they are different. People who are interested in these themes are my targeted readership.
Figuring out who finds your work interesting is part of the entire marketing package. Knowing where to focus your attention will give you a stronger ability to reach the people who want your book. And that will result in sales!
dedicated to my crit buddy Jerry Race