The formula for more book sales is simple. And, you don't need to be a mathematician or chemist to apply it to your book. Get it here and sell more books.
I don’t know many authors who are 100% satisfied with the number of books they sell.
In most cases, it’s because they don’t know the simple formula for more book sales
When you understand the formula and put it to work, you’ll hit your sales goals sooner because you’ll be reaching the right people where they are with the right messages.
You’ll be wasting less time and become far more effective with your marketing.
Your audience isn’t “everybody”
The formula for more book sales starts with understanding that the audience for your book isn’t “everybody.”
There are few books available that appeal to all readers. A how-to book on healthy eating probably should appeal to “everyone,” but doesn’t. And how many 15-year-old boys do you know reading hen lit?
It’s super important to determine the small subset of “everybody” that will want to read your book. While it’s counterintuitive, fact is, the smaller your audience, the more successful you’ll be.
That’s because of how the formula for more book sales works.
Formula for more book sales
Here’s your formula for more book sales:
Narrow target audience + discoverability = book sales
Why does it work this way? It starts with really, truly knowing who will buy your book.
Narrow target audience
Success starts with a narrow target audience. I realize that sounds limiting. You’re probably thinking that if your audience is smaller, you’ll sell fewer copies than if the audience is “everybody,” right?
This idea of “less is more” really does make sense when you think about it.
If you wrote a handbook on accounting for small businesses, would you try to sell it to “everybody,” or would you focus your marketing efforts on small business owners with no in-house accounting staff?
Of course you’d focus on the people who are most likely to buy it – small business owners without that capability in-house. Welders, human resource executives, or engineers who aren’t self-employed don’t need or want it, so why waste your time trying to get your book in front of them?
Some books appeal to more people than others do. Still, even when you dig into a popular category like thrillers, you’ll be able to narrow down your audience. Some thriller readers want domestic stories. Others don’t like graphic violence. Still others prefer political thrillers.
The more specific you can get about your audience, the more likely you are to sell more books because you’ll be going after only the right people. It keeps you from wasting your time while it helps you make the right marketing decisions.The more specific you can get about your audience, the more likely you are to sell more books because you'll be going after only the right people.Click to tweet
Narrow target audience specifics
To get your book discovered, you want to know your specific target audience’s:
- Psychographics (life stage, lifestyle, culture, religion, etc.)
- Book buying habits or preferences
Nobody presents you with that information, though. You have to do some work to get it.
But once you have that knowledge, you’ll be able to select the book marketing tactics that will help you reach and connect with the readers who will buy your book.
For example, when you know that your target audience is book-loving females between the ages of 18 and 34, you’ll see that TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat are where it’s happening in social media and that you might reach them on Wattpad. More women than men use Wattpad and 67% of the site’s users are in that age range.
Need help with that? In my video training program, “Who Will Buy Your Book? How to Figure Out and Find Your Target Audience,” I teach you exactly how to identify your book’s target audience and where to find them so you sell more books.
Discoverability, the second piece of the formula, describes how likely people are to find your book when they’re not specifically looking for it.
Maybe they ask Facebook friends to recommend a cozy mystery with a little romance thrown in.
They might use Amazon’s search box to find books on a nonfiction topic and yours shows ups in the search results.
Or they see the title and a description in Entertainment Weekly’s “top summer beach reads” article.
You already know that your target audience won’t discover your book if you aren’t promoting it. And, unless you know your narrow target audience and where to find them online and offline, you won’t be promoting your book in the right places.Unless you know your narrow target audience and where to find them online and offline, you won’t be promoting your book in the right places.Click to tweet
That’s why “narrow audience” improves your “discoverability.”
Look for your niches
When you go from “everybody” to a more niche, narrow target audience, you make smarter marketing choices. You waste less time, energy, and money while you do more of the right things that lead to book sales.
That formula again is:
Narrow target audience (the people most likely to buy your book) +
discoverability (promoting your book in the right places) =
Applying the formula for more book sales
Set aside time to work on your formula. Write down:
- Your description of the single person most likely to love your book
- Why they will love it
- Where you will find that person online and offline
- The book marketing tactics you can use to reach them in those places
- The book marketing messages that will resonate with your narrow target audience
Record this information in your book marketing plan, then take action. You’ll find that you’re far more focused and less overwhelmed.
And you’ll probably move forward faster, too.
Remember: Narrow target audience + discoverabilty = book sales.
Do you know your book’s target audience? What is it?
(Editor’s note: This article was first published in July 2016. It has been updated and expanded.)
Subscribe to the free Build Book Buzz newsletter and get the free special report, “Top 5 Free Book Promotion Resources,” immediately!