Choosing Your Target Audience: A Must In The Writing Process

What is a Target Audience? And why do you need one? If you have decided to write a non-fiction book, you have expertise in a subject of broad interest or you have lived through a compelling experience and have come out the other side having learned something of great importance to share with the hopes of improving your reader’s lives. Who do you want to reach with your book? That is your Target Audience.

choosing your target audienceAs a non-fiction and memoir coach and editor, I have been blessed to work with some amazing people who became even more amazing writers. Some authors have come to me with a seed of an idea and others have come to me with their first drafts primarily written. But the one truly consistent issue with all of the writers that I have worked with over the years is the importance of identifying their Target Audience. The Target Audience determines the voice and the tone of your book. It is the essence of how you will write your book, your word choices, and how your frame your message.

I know the idea can seem a little abstract, but if you can identify your Target Audience clearly, and early on in the writing process (yes, writing a book is a process), it will help you very much in the actual writing. I am assuming that if you are ready to take the big step of writing your book, you will also want to market it. One of the first questions a marketing specialist will ask you is “who is your Target Audience.” That will help them assess who they can sell your book to, and what the possible market size is.

So, let’s talk about how to go about determining just who your Target Audience is. It is not people from age 25-50. That is much too broad a range. The frame of reference of these two age groups are vastly different. What interests a 25 years old person who is just beginning their adult lives is not the same thing that a 50 year old person would find important. Is your Target Audience male or female? Why? Can your book be of value for both?

A good exercise is to picture in your mind a specific person you would like to read your book. Who is that person, what is it about that person that qualifies them as someone you want as a reader. Then list their attributes and decide which of those attributes you most want your book to connect with.

This is just one of the many ways to determine how to choose that all important Target Audience. I am happy to help you with this process and all of the other steps in the writing of your nonfiction and/or memoir manuscript.

Next time, I will write about the Voice of your book. Once you know who you are writing to, then you have to decide how you want to communicate with your Target Audience. That is your Voice and you will learn all about it in my next blog.

Keep writing!!


  1. Michelle says:

    Thank you. I have started writing a book, and then stopped, due to moving and life just becoming way to crazy to even think. With you showing up in my mail, has moved me again to get my lap top out and get started. My book is real, I am 55, I’ve live the life of most 90 yr olds, must say with very little help if any, raise 3 children, widowed at 44. So thank you

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *