Recently, I asked a few questions about what kinds of freebies memoirists offer and I “stumbled” over someone who went the opposite direction. He was mentioning that his circle of family and friends weren’t interested so he was trying to find his target audience. In the meantime, he mentioned that he was posting chapters and segments of his memoir to his blog.
This is a no-no.
Unfortunately, nobody in today’s digital world has the time to wade through pages of your writing and unfortunately, this is not going to help you get maximum exposure.
There’s a strategy that involves a completely different mindset and approach.
Here’s what it boils down to: audience. A target audience is by nature defined as a group of people who genuinely are interested in the key issues and themes of your blog and ultimately, they are reading your blog or memoir or both because they want to know how your memoir addresses these themes and issues.
Building your blog’s target readership is also key in building your author platform. You should not wait until your book is published to get this done. In fact, I’ve been blogging my memoir ever since I started writing it!
So your job as a blogger and author is to find ways to engage them and also find these people.
So I decided to turn this experience into perfect opportunity to address these key issues on this blog. And of course, if you join me on the teleclass, you’ll get lots of rich content and handouts. Know there is no quick fix and that is why I am also turning this subject into a three part blog series, which I’ve written as a series of “steps.”
This reader’s concern primarily addresses two areas: finding a target readership and promoting one’s memoir really translates into “blogging your memoir.”
Let me first acknowledge the fact that I too, am finding this area somewhat of a challenge myself mainly because it’s so slow growing, but I am seeing results which confirms what I’m doing is right.
Step 1: Who is your primary readership? If your family and friends are not your primary readership, then who are your target readers?
Start by asking yourself the following questions:
1. Who are my primary readers? Give some basic information in terms of age, occupation, interests, geographical location. (This doesn’t have to be super exact, but try to be as specific as possible.)
2. Where do they hang out? What forums or threads interest them? Are they social activists, backpackers looking for an adventure, or reading how to make the most of their retirement?
3. What kinds of problems or challenges are they currently facing?
4. How does your memoir address these problems or issues?
If you can briefly answer these questions in a few sentences, then you’ve got clarity. Note that quite often you’ll need to address this as you and your memoir stretch and grow together because you are getting deeper into your heart’s story.
Don’t also get stuck with perfection paralysis by having the answers to these questions super down pat. This is of course, a work-in-progress, like we all are and you’ll most likely be revisiting these questions consistently.
Are you ready for step two? In the next segment, we’ll be talking about where to find these people and how to blog your memoir – starting with your memoir’s themes.
Oh and did you check out the upcoming teleclass I’m offering on “Blogging Your Memoir?” Check out the call times and details — which can be found here.