By Rhonda Robinson
A few years back, a writer handed me her emotions in a tangled knot. She had gone to a networking meeting with the hope of meeting, and impressing, a particular editor. In the course of their conversation she let the cliché slip, “If my book could change only one person’s life, it would all be worth it.” Without so much as a nod to her nobility he quipped, “Well then, I think you need to broaden your expectations.”
It’s really never very becoming to end a conversation with your jaw on the floor.
Nonetheless, both of them were right.
Whatever you write, your ideal reader is the person who sees your book and knows it’s for her.
That’s the one whose life you want to impact. When you understand search engine optimization (SEO) you can broaden your expectations. You can be found when your looked for, and even better, discovered when you’re not.
Who is your number one?
What are his or her dreams, goals, and predawn prayers? The first step in understanding SEO, is knowing that one person so well, that you could pick out her drapes for her.
Create an avatar of your ideal reader.
Begin by find an image of what you image he or she looks like. The avatar will give you a visual of his or her age, social status, and should show a bit of personality. Next create a brief story about his or her life. If you have a book Facebook page, look up the analytics of your fan base. There you will find a lot of information about those who like your page.
What you need to keep in mind is that when your ideal reader is searching for your content, she is doing so with, what is known as, intent and context in marketing. In publishing it translates as “felt need.”
For example, “I need to find out about the stages of grief (intent) because my sister lost her spouse (context).
There are groups of people searching with the same context—or felt need. You will also find groups of people with different intent and context. Most importantly you will find groups of readers with the same intent but all may have different contexts—all of which will discover your content as meeting their need.
Your reader has a felt need and you have the answers.
They may not be ready to buy your book. They might not be ready for that kind of a relationship with you. After all, you just met. Perhaps a blog post over coffee. After a couple of those, she might give you her email address as a token of her openness to the prospects of a deeper relationship.
This courtship between you and your prospective reader is facilitated by a bot (search engine).
By understanding the needs of one person you want to serve, you can use keywords that express their intent and context so the bot will bring your readers to you.
As a mother and a grandmother of a growing population of towheads, Rhonda launched her passion for the next generation into the front lines of the culture war. As a recovering political junkie, Rhonda restores her barefoot soul writing tucked in the hills of Tennessee, among the herbs and muddy paw prints. Her new book, FreeFall: Holding on to Faith When the Unthinkable Strikes is due out Jan. 2020 New Hope Publishers. Social Media links: website. www.rhondarobinson.tv Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RhondaRobinson.tv/ Twitter: @amotherslife Linked In:Rhonda-Robinson