Information and ideas on the self-publishing industry. I am the President of Southwestern Publishing Group, Inc., a leader in the custom publishing industry. Naturally, I enjoy discussing 'all things books', but occasionally, you will hear a political or sports view.
In my last post, I spent some time discussing the value of content in planning a cookbook. Something else that must be considered when developing content is your audience. I say this for two very important reasons - content must appeal to those whom you want to purchase your book and you must have a way to reach this audience.
Let me give you some examples to illustrate.
If you decided to publish a cookbook for individuals afflicted with Celiac Disease you would obviously be narrowing the number of interested buyers to the Celiac population. At the same time you could be developing a database of Celiac sufferers within a certain region or area for social media efforts. Perhaps you would approach the medical community to assist in your marketing efforts--patient brochures, copies of books in allergist offices, finding medical blogs that deal with Celiac Disease to promote your title and so forth.
If, however you are generating a community cookbook targeted to raise funds within your town you would take a totally different approach in both content and marketing. You would start your book by involving your membership for recipes and orders, then work your way out for marketing purposes into the local media and distribution networks. Your might seek appearances on local cooking shows, promote to the Convention and Visitors bureau, hold book signings and tastings in local retail book or gift stores, for example.
You would also base your book order based on the universe your title would appeal to. I've never heard of an exact formula but you certainly wouldn't assume that everyone within your target audience would purchase, but rather you would agree on a reasonable percentage likely to buy over a 12-24 month period. The Melting Pot Restaurants based their first printing of Dip Into Something Different (15,000 copies) on a percentage of their preferred customer database and then ordered additional books as inventory was depleted. Their total print run now totals well over 50,000 copies.
This bit of legwork and planning up front might slow you down but will pay off in success if you develop the plan, identify the audience and then work the plan.