Realistic Market Analysis for Your Book

Dec 17, 2012 | Writing A Book

Almost everyone who contacts me about working on a book has done some market analysis. I often hear, “There’s nothing like this on the market.” That sounds good, but don’t take it at face value.

Ask “Why isn’t there a book like this already?” If you’re sure there’s a need out there your book will meet, you should determine why no one else has tried. Here are some possible reasons.

The book you want to write is much harder than you think. Try writing a chapter to test how difficult it is to put your idea into readable form.

There may be legal and liability issues that aren’t apparent at first glance. Talk to the people you want to write about to find out if they’re concerned about what you might say. Talk to an attorney or two to get their take.

There may not be a market for it. Yes, people probably told you they would buy a book like what you plan to write. But saying they’ll buy it and actually buying it are two different things. Perhaps early writers found that out.

First, do some hard-headed analysis from the potential buyer’s perspective. Will your book solve an important problem or answer an important question for the reader? Is it important enough to them that they will part with money?

Test the market with a short version of your idea. You can do a simple ebook and offer it for sale. The price usually isn’t as important as learning whether people will pay to get the solution or answer you offer.

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