When you produce content for your blog, do you write with purpose?
Do you write with a belief that your words have the potential to convert leads into clients? And more importantly, do you write with the deliberate intent of doing exactly that?
The purpose with which you write your blog posts can make all the difference to your blog’s potential for success. What you write is of paramount importance (as you would expect). But who you write for can make all the difference between content that really resonates with potential clients, or content that simply falls by the wayside.
In this article, I will explain who you should write for, and why it can make a drastic difference to how visitors engage with your site — and ultimately, your business.
Creating Your Content for One Person
You’ve undoubtedly heard the term “target audience” before. Whilst you may not have deliberately considered your own target audience in mind when writing a blog post, I am sure that you can understand the value of such a process. After all, if you write specifically for a group of people, your content is more likely to resonate with them.
However, I would actually like you to consider your target audience with more specificity — I want you to imagine a “target person”. I want you to build up a complete image of one human being, who represents the shared common attributes of your clients. This one person will not of course represent everyone, because that is not possible. But if you consider the bulk of your clients, you will notice patterns.
For instance, I recently finished writing a guide to freelance writing. I wrote this guide in response to a number of emails that I received from readers of my blog — all asking very similar questions. This led me to believe that there was demand for a guide that sought to answer all of those questions in detail.
When I consider the people who contacted me, I can see a lot of similarities amongst them. They were often female, usually in their 20s/30s, and often single parents. So I built up an image of a 30 year old single mother, looking to establish a career that she could work around her child.
If you carry out a similar exercise, the way in which you approach your writing may change drastically — for the better. When you write specifically for a “target person”, the readers who share those attributes will feel like the post was written with them in mind (because it was).
But What About Everyone Else?
The common fear associated with writing in this way is that you will alienate a vast swathe of your readership. What about all of the people who are not exactly like your “target person”?
There are two answers to this question. The first is that writing for “everyone” is not actually possible. If you keep your writing bland in an attempt to cater to all parties, you will find that no one is particularly interested in your content. The second is that writing for your target person is likely to attract far more people than just those who are exactly like your imagined character.
Generally speaking, you only need to hit on one specific pain point, or one specific desire, to engage with a reader. It doesn’t matter if that reader is a 50 year old divorcee or a 20 year old student — if you can engage with someone on an emotional level, they will respond. Content that is written specifically for your “target person” will engage a relatively tight circle of specific leads, followed by a far larger circle of leads who only share certain traits.
Finally, there will outliers — those who are not engaged with your content. Chances are, those people were never going to be interested in your content, and as such, would never be your client anyway. Why try to write content for them?
Be Specific, But Don’t Be Specific
I am not suggesting that you imagine a “target person”, name her Jane, then start every blog post with, “Hello Jane”. Nor should you mention the specifics of your “target person” in the post — after all, they know themselves. But what you should do is bear the characteristics and traits of your imagine character in mind as you write your post. You should look to address their concerns, and write in a manner that is most suited to them.
Ultimately, getting a core of people to engage with your business thoroughly is typically far better than getting a lukewarm response from the masses. And perhaps most importantly, you will find that this method results in the organic growth of your blog. People who are truly engaged with your content will be far more likely to spread the word.
So next time you sit down to write a blog post, take a few minutes to imagine exactly who you are writing for. Then set out to address their specific concerns, fears, and desires. The rest will follow.
Creative Commons image courtesy of racheocity