Monday, October 5, 2009
Target Market vs. Extended Market: Artists and their Audience
While I was out of town, I started thinking about foreign markets and promotion in general. The last few decades of business have moved us toward a global economy. It is becoming easier to get almost anything, anywhere in the world (thank you, Internet).
I started thinking about all the places that I would eventually like my books to be sold ... and all the places that I'd like to go to promote the books. Music artists and movie people travel all around promoting their work. They visit small venues in different states and countries and play for small audiences, building fans one by one. This takes patience, determination and belief in the excellence of their project.
Depending on your project (and your pre-existing level of fame) I think that the one by one approach is the best way to establish supporters. It builds lasting connections and REAL fans.
We must define our target market and our extended market for our finished products. For example: a women's fiction writer who just wrote a certain "chick lit" novel may establish her target market as women from age 25-40, who make a mid-range salary, love fashion, and have had a few tough relationships. She then may further define her extended market as all women (and some men) under 60 who may find a few things to relate to in her story.
If she scores an interview with a news radio station that is most listened to by men and women 35+, then she is participating in marketing to her extended audience. If she lands a booth at a "Thirty & Flirty: Single Women Unite" conference she is promoting herself to her target audience. She may get sales as a result of both promotional techniques, but she'll probably sell more to her target audience, and (if her work is good) build fans that will jump to get her next project as well.
What places would you like to promote your work; and who is your target sales audience (not your ideal reader who you wrote the book for)?