Stay on Target – Writing Content to Fit your Audience

The online world is awash in content. The sheer volume of online content presents a pitfall for content marketers: There is so much out there that messages can drown in the wave, and no one person can expect to take it all in, and we are on our way to add more to it! How do we keep our message from getting lost in the flood?

The answer, of course, is to write targeted content. Everything you put online – from web pages to blog posts to ads to multimedia – needs to be tailored to meet the needs of your audience. To make your content leave an impression with the reader, you must always keep in mind what it’s for and who is seeing it. In short, stay on target!

As you saw in the video, Gold Leader let distractions get the better of him, but Gold Five would have made a pretty good content guy. A single-minded focus on the target is what it takes to create great content.

How do you Target your Content?
An effective content plan starts with SEO. You’ll be posting content online, so it’s imperative that your content match your SEO plan. Fortunately, the two are sympathetic; good SEO is implemented through content, and good content is informed by SEO requirements. The two work together.

With a solid foundation of good SEO, you can move on to the next step in targeting your content: defining your audience. You can’t write good content if you don’t keep in mind who will read it. Your audience doesn’t need to be homogenous, nor does it need to be overly narrow; you can have a widely varied target population in mind, so long as you put something for everyone into your work.

Defining your Audience
Knowing your target audience will require some due diligence on your part. Some questions to keep in mind as you conduct your market research are pretty basic – “What problem does our product solve for the customer?” – while others are more complex – “Why do our customers come to us for solutions?” You can find answers to these through a wide variety of methods. One great place to start is by using Google and Facebook’s analytic tools that you can use to monitor traffic and visitor behavior.

Even better than relying on tools for your audience research, however, is the oldest method of all: talk to people. Keep your social media and website comments turned on, and encourage your visitors to leave their thoughts – and when they do, answer them! There is no better way to know what’s on someone’s mind, or what he may want, than to engage in direct communication.

Give ‘em What they Want
Once you’re clear about your audience, you need to keep them with you. This, of course, is the holy grail of content work, and there is really only one way to be sure of it: Give them what they want. With every page or post or blog or ad that you write, make sure that you give your audience something of value. Whether it is important information, a great deal, or a free download, your audience should never go away empty-handed.

With more than 10 years’ experience in marketing communications and online content writing, and an academic background in political science and creative writing, Michael brings a sharp eye, an analytical mind, a creative turn of phrase, and great grammar to BlueJay’s content marketing.
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