Audience Development

“If you build it, they will come.” While this may be true for a Field of Dreams, it does not translate to publishing a book. “If you publish it, they will read it” is not an axiom. Rather, getting people to read a book that has been published takes work.


Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA) seeks to equip publishers in marketing their books. One of the ways we strive to do this is by offering an annual seminar for publishers and anyone interested in becoming a publisher at the International Christian Retail Show (ICRS).

This year, our seminar, Publishers’ Institute: Tools for Success, focused on helping publishers enrich and expand the audience for their books. The buzz word circling the publishing world for this concept is “audience development.”

The seminar covered three areas of audience development:

  1. Acquiring foreign rights for your books (and as a side, CSPA now has two foreign rights agencies’ services available to our member publishers).
  2. Developing your audience to create a self-sustaining system that grows.
  3. Marketing trends to take advantage of to enlarge your audience.

If you want to find out ways that you can develop and enlarge an audience for your books, then I recommend that you listen to the audio version of this year’s Publishers’ Institute seminar. It is available on CSPA’s website at this link ( for you to order and download. The cost is just $16 and this will give you access to both the audio recording of the speakers as well as to each speaker’s PowerPoint presentation.

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