Know your audience well and then start writing

By Kathleen Procek, communications coordinator

A few weeks ago, I read a blog online that stuck out to me for one very simple reason – I felt like it was written for me specifically. Obviously, that wasn’t the case, but this experience hit home, and I realized, if more people took the time to research and get to know their audience as well as that one author did, more people would find their writing to be more engaging. When you know your audience well and you use that knowledge to inform and shape your content, it becomes worth the time you dedicated creating it. Among other things, knowing your audience will help you connect with them, the same way the blog mentioned earlier connected with me. Here are a few more things to keep in mind.

Do your homework so you know your audience’s interests

When you write for and with your audience in mind, you are more likely to attract the audience you want. When you’ve identified your audience and you know their interests, hobbies and demographic information, you can drop your content directly into their laps, all wrapped up and delivered with a big red virtual bow. Okay, so maybe not really, but it certainly helps. Understanding your audience and being consistent in appealing to them and how you do so, helps your audience find you. Give your readers what they seek – good content that speaks to them.

Understand your audience’s mindset

Be relatable. Understanding the tone and mindset of your audience, and using that information to inform your content, makes it relatable and appealing to them. Another way to be relatable is to write conversationally or to tell a story. Unless you’re writing a textbook, you don’t want to be too rigid or technical. Now, there’s a time and place for everything, so rigid, technical content isn’t always out of the question, but the excessive use of jargon and procedural writing is one sure fire way to turn off your readers.

Your audience will promote you

When people like what you have to say and they feel they can relate to you, they’ll tell their likeminded friends about you. They’ll become your content brand advocates and they’ll help you make friends, too! Your attentiveness will pay off and your readers will share the love.

Knowing your audience takes research and effort, but once you know exactly who you’re trying to reach and what resonates with them, you can use that knowledge to influence your writing. Your writing will appeal to your audience in a way that makes it feel personalized and crafted specifically for them. While it may take a little time to learn about them and their interests, the effort you make will be well worth it. And the best part is they’ll keep coming back, ready to read more of your work.