What Is The Toughest Challenge All New Writers Face?

Challenge For New Writers

New writers face a learning curve for the many facets they need to master to write well.

It takes time to understand the writing craft and learn how to structure a story, an essay, an article, or a poem.

But the more you write, the better you become as you come to grips with grammar, syntax, tone, and style.

Yet, no matter how well you write, there is always one last challenge to overcome. How do you attract readers to your writing?

Finding readers for new writers

It doesn’t matter if you are eighteen or eighty.

Attracting people to read your writing is a tough assignment for new writers and authors of any age.

Without readers, it is a little like talking to yourself. But there are approaches you can take to help.

The strategies will often differ between authors, bloggers, and article writers.

But if there is one that applies to any writer, it is to define who your potential readers are.

If you are writing vampire fantasy romance stories, you are unlikely to attract mature-aged readers.

For this genre, it is more likely to be teens and twenties and primarily female.

For a new blogger, it’s all about your niche topic.

Let’s say the blog is about vintage car restoration.

The best chance of finding readers is to probably target a mature male audience interested in cars and mechanics.

Article writing is popular with new writers.

But it is different from other forms of writing because you are usually trying to sell a product and gain commissions via affiliate marketing programs.

In this case, the topics of your articles may be quite varied, so you will need to target different readers for each article.

The competitive market

competitive market

Many new writers fall into the trap of thinking that their writing is for everyone.

The reality is that there is only a very small niche audience for any form or genre of writing.

Even the most popular authors only sell to a particular niche in the market.

While Amazon doesn’t supply any hard data, it is estimated that around 7,500 Kindle ebooks are published every day.

The statistics for blog posts published each day are much more reliable and accurate and continually updated.

On average, around seven million posts are published per day.

With so much content being published, how can you find an audience?

 

Do your market research

If you want to find readers, you have to know who they are so you can work towards attracting their attention.

It will be an extremely small segment.

The best way to do this is to spend some time doing your market research.

Social media is a great place to start.

You can search using your topic or theme or hunt for hashtags that apply to your writing.

Then you can take note of the demographics of people who are interested in your topic.

Think about age group, gender, geographic location, and perhaps personal preferences.

For authors, Goodreads is a social media site for readers. It’s a great resource to investigate different genre preferences.

Search engines are another tool you can use to find writers in your particular field.

If you can, try to find sites that have comments from readers.

It can give you an insight into what they like and don’t like and the questions they ask.

From the information you find, try to construct and imagine the typical reader for your writing.

Once you have a clear idea of your small niche and potential readership, it will save you from wasting time and money promoting your writing to everyone.

 

Reach out or attract readers?

There’s only one answer to the question.

Reaching out on social media or writing forums and directly asking people to read your writing is doomed to failure.

The only way new writers can succeed is to attract new readers.

When your writing is high quality, informative, problem-solving, or entertaining, it’s a great start.

If you are an expert in your topic area, you can help people overcome problems with sound advice.

There are many ways you can attract readers, but the methods can differ a little depending on your writing projects.

 

The do better strategy for new writers

skyscraper

It is sometimes called the skyscraper technique. You look at your competition and try to do better.

There’s a great article on Copyblogger about how bloggers and content writers can find readers when no one knows you.

It says you have to do something epic.

Make time regularly to create and publish content that’s more thorough, or more creative — or maybe more innovative, empathetic, or far-reaching.

You’ll create a few near-misses before you come up with one that’s genuinely epic.

The advice applies to any form of writing.

But for bloggers, it’s a reminder that SEO (search engine optimization) is now more about quality writing than technical SEO.

When you look at articles that are ranking high on Google in your topic area, the best way you can compete is to do it better.

It’s similar for authors of fiction or nonfiction.

Ebooks are pretty cheap, so you should read a couple of popular books in your specific genre. Try to identify what makes them appealing to readers.

Sometimes it can be as simple as a stunning book cover, a compelling title, or a book description that hooks new book buyers.

You can dig much deeper into the subject of finding new book readers on Alli.

Making contact with readers

As opposed to asking, answering a question is always a better way to attract people to your writing.

One of the best ways is to answer questions on Quora in your field of expertise.

For bloggers, there are also plenty of WordPress and SEO forums where you can help people.

Just make sure that your profiles on these forums are up to date and include a link to your website or books.

Commenting on articles is another easy way to get attention.

Again, make sure you have a registered profile for sites such as newspapers.

But if this is not a feature, look for sites where you can add your website URL when you post a comment.

Of course, social media is one of the main ways to introduce your writing to readers.

Yes, you should add posts, share and like, and join groups.

But you will get much more traction if you can answer questions or provide helpful information.

However, don’t get carried away on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Limit your time to no more than half an hour a day. You need time to write.

One social media platform I like a lot is Pinterest because it is not time-consuming.

I get a lot of traffic from it, and all it takes is to add a post with an image.

 

Should new writers advertise?

pay per click

Paying for Facebook, Google, or Amazon for pay-per-click ads is the direct route to take if you want readers.

Advertising can be very effective and is the fastest way to attract book buyers or blog readers.

But it can become very expensive unless you keep it under control.

It’s also a bit of a gamble because not every campaign you run will succeed.

I would always recommend going very slowly.

It’s far more sensible to bet your morning coffee at McDonald’s than your monthly mortgage or rent payment.

Set a budget you can afford and only run your ads for short periods.

You can get good results for something like $30-50.00 a month if you target your campaigns to your niche reader demographic.

There’s no magic bullet

The challenge of finding readers can be frustrating when you first start writing.

But with patience and knowing your niche market, you will find readers, and for authors, book buyers.

Keep writing and keep improving, and the rewards will come.

Yes, you want to get your name out there, so you need to interact with people online. But don’t get consumed by it.

A little goes a long way, and especially so with social media.

In the end, the best way to attract readers is to publish exceptional books, terrific content marketing articles or build a highly informative blog with good SEO.

Every new writer starts at zero, so the only way is up.

Derek Haines

A Cambridge CELTA English teacher and author with a passion for writing and all forms of publishing. My days are spent writing and blogging, as well as testing and taming new technology.

Avatar for Derek Haines

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