Want More Out of Your Marketing? Write Content that Engages Your Target Audience
We’re going to start this post off with a little exercise. Bear with us.
Let’s say you’re at work, just doing your thing, when all of a sudden, a pipe bursts. Water starts spraying everywhere. The floors are soaked, your products are damaged. It’s a mess.
Now it’s time to make some phone calls. You know you’ll at least be calling the insurance agent, perhaps a spouse or other family member, and surely a friend or two will hear the tale. What does that sound like exactly? The conversation you have with your agent will probably be a little more business-like, while your friends and family get a casual, and possibly exaggerated, version of the story.
That’s because we tend to take our audience into account when we’re talking. We prioritize information differently, we use a different style, we may even use different language based on who we’re talking to.
So if you do it in your personal life, why don’t you do it when it comes to talking to your customers online?
Why Write for a Target Audience?
Every business has a target market, an ideal customer. And yet when it comes to marketing, small business owners tend to go with the “catch as many people as we possibly can” route with their message, but that’s a fastest way to squander your limited resources. Why?
For starters, it’s a huge waste of time. Why try to appeal to someone who has no need for your product or service? It just doesn’t make sense! It’s also extremely ineffective. Even if you are reaching the right people, if your tone or language is off, your words will fall on deaf ears.
Everything — your website content, social media posts, blogs and especially your ads — should be written with your target audience in mind.
How Can You Adapt Your Content?
So how do you break out of the boring, industry-speak writing mold and tap into your audience-focused voice?
Talk with them. When you’re blogging and posting on social media, use a conversational tone. That means breaking the writing rules and using first and second voice — aka saying “I” and “you.” This makes your content more personal, and that goes a long way toward building trust with your audience. As much as we obsess about all the cool technologies available to help us market, we can never lose site that WE ARE COMMUNICATING WITH REAL PEOPLE!
Use their language. Want to reach your target audience? You gotta talk their talk. The way you attract and engage your audience is by showing them that you’re part of their world, and that means mimicking their language. Yes, it’s OK to use slang every now and again (did you catch that earlier in this paragraph?) if it’s something your audience is in to. Just don’t go overboard or it will come off as inauthentic.
Answer their questions. One of the best things you can do to get your target audience on board is to answer their questions. Your target audience has problems. It’s your job to show them that your business is the solution to those problems. Do this by figuring out what common issues your target audience faces and use your site and blog content to address them! Pro tip: Use questions in your title and subheadings — since they’re bigger (and bolder) they’ll catch readers’ attentions quickly!
Put yourself in their shoes. When in doubt, close your eyes and put yourself in your customers’ shoes. You’re probably thinking that sounds cliché, but it works. If you tackle your marketing projects with only your needs in mind, you’re going to miss the mark. Having empathy for your customers and their needs is what is going to make your content convert.
Here’s to you being more engaging and authentic with your content! If the team at Higgins Marketing Group can support you in any way, we’d be honored.
Until next time…