After a two-month hiatus, I’m finally back! What happened? In short…vacation, a missions trip to the Dominican Republic, designing an engagement ring, and proposing to my girlfriend (who said, “yes,” and is now my fiancée).
Continuing where I left off, let’s apply another business principle to our writing lives…
You’ve defined your goals, strategies, and maybe even worked in a few tactics. For example, let’s say you’re primarily writing to entertain, but you also want to provoke thought. You’ve also chosen to write science fiction adventure stories (which is a tactic that we’ll get to in a future post). That’s your brand. Think about a brand as the answer to this question, “What do you think about (writer’s name)?” In the example listed above, we’re hoping that the answer is: “He writes fast-paced, action-oriented science fiction that will make you think along the way.”
With your core strategy and value proposition settled, it’s time for market research. How do you do market research?
- Look at what your competitors are doing. Try to define what their strategy is.
- See what publishers are releasing to the marketplace.
- Determine a target audience (one that would respond favorably to your strategy and tactics).
- Match audience demographics to published works.
What are some ways to do market research?
- Read. Books, magazines (The Writer, Writer’s Digest, etc.), websites, and everything else you have available to you.
- Talk to other writers. Collaborate.
- Visit publishers’ websites. Talk to editors and agents. Ask them what they like and dislike. Ask them what they’re looking for. Ask them what the market is demanding.
Market Research can be a royal pain, but i think that doing your homework pays dividends later. Good stuff
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