Marketing Your Content to the Right Audience: Lessons from J.K. Rowling

Can you remember the first time you heard about the Harry Potter books? I know I can. I was in my elementary school classroom, and everyone one was all abuzz about the book that one of my friends had brought to school; Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.

Harry Potter Characters

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At that time, like many avid Harry Potter fans, I did not like reading. Scratch that—I hated it. However, there was something about this average boy with messy hair and round, dorky glasses that made you want to know what happened to him. In fact, many people did—by June 2011, the Harry Potter series became the best-selling book series in history after having sold 450 million copies.

This proved that the combination of reaching the right audience, great writing, and awesome marketing techniques can create a historical success. So, why not translate that into your content writing?

Book StoreMaking Your Content Audience Worthy

Before you even start planning how and where to market your work, you have to know who your audience is. With Harry Potter, the audience was clearly children, so how did that translate into the writing of the story?

J.K. Rowling is brilliant in how she makes her writing specifically for who her reader should be. The characters represent real people who can relate to the story behind all the magic.

Harry is your typical outcast who feels unloved. He also seems to always be in trouble. Hermione is the know-it-all that has a hard time making friends, and Ron is one of many siblings from a family that often embarrasses him but loves him all the same. Almost every child can identify in some way with one of these characters.

In this same way, you can reach your audience. For example, if you are selling cleaning products, what audience will be best served by the information? Mothers and wives are generally the audience that will look for cleaning products, and they are looking for things that work but are safe around children and animals. Their focus is on family, so relate to that sense of compassion and responsibility. As long as your product actually works, there’s a good chance you’ll make a profit.

Where to Put Your Content

Sometimes this is the hardest decision to make because you don’t know exactly what it will take to get people to your content. J.K. Rowling herself struggled with this when marketing her book in the UK didn’t quite pan out. Instead, it was the United States where the Harry Potter phenomenon took off, and then many other countries followed suit.

The most powerful marketing technique is by word-of-mouth. You have to get your content into the hands of a person or a group of individuals who will tell others about your writing and/or product. Then, the audience will begin to share the experience in their own way, much like Harry Potter fans took to the Internet, creating blogs, fan sites, and their own spins on the story and characters. This did much of the marketing for J.K. Rowling.

The Internet is becoming the best place for advertising, but how do you choose which sites to market to first?

Internet

 

Social media sites are the key. Large amounts of people talk and share information on Twitter and Facebook each day, and with one post, you can spread your content to millions of people in one place.

Widen the Audience

Lastly, remember that there are only so many people you can reach with one type of audience. Always try to expand your brand somehow to reach different types of people.

Remember, Harry Potter had many more relatable characters other than the children. Dumbledore, Snape, and even Voldemort were all relatable adult characters, setting the precedent for fans and readers other than children.

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