How to Make Your Content More Relevant to Your Audience
17th March 2017
No matter how well-written and presented your content is, if it’s not of interest to your target audience it won’t bring visitors to your website, let alone convert visitors into leads.
In contrast, producing interesting content will not only keep your existing customers and visitors engaged but will also attract new potential customers.
The end goal for every piece of content is to be seen and appreciated by as many people as possible. However, this is only achievable through generating content relevant to your readers.
Related content: 6 Tools to Help You Come up with Fresh Content Ideas
How do you really make sure your content is relevant to your audience?
Luckily, this can become rather easy if you follow these basic tips and tricks:
1. Know your audience
To start any successful marketing activity you need to get the basics right. Defining your audience is critical not only to content marketing, but also to any other marketing campaign for that matter. Whether it’s social media, email marketing, PPC and so on, you need to know who you are talking to in order to create a message that appeals to your target audience.
The easiest way to do that is to create a buyer persona. In short, a buyer or consumer persona is a representation of your ideal customer(s) based on market research and real data about your existing customers. When creating a buyer persona you should include information such as demographics, background, motivations and goals, identifiers, hobbies and interests, challenges and common objections among others. You obviously don’t have to find out all of these details, but generally, the more detailed your customer persona is and the more you know about your audience, the better.
Here is an example of a buyer persona:
As you can see from the example above, the persona description is very detailed. Sometimes the most valuable information is hidden in the smallest details. For example, one of the main challenges of Marketing Mary is the fact that she has too many responsibilities and is too busy. Therefore, content that gives tips on time management, multi-tasking or maybe an article reviewing the best marketing software solutions to help save time and increase productivity would be of interest to this persona.
Identifying the right buyer persona is the first and most important step to producing relevant content, so make sure you spend enough time working on it and put together a complete identity which will also help you in any other marketing activity.
2. Answer their questions
The next step after you have identified who you are talking to is to make sure you are answering the questions your visitors might have.
A good place to start is doing your own research and creating a comprehensive list of keywords that appeal to each buyer persona. After you have identified the main topics, do further research through Google’s Keyword Planner (or any other keyword explorer) for any broadly related queries to your search terms.
Other places which are often disregarded, but are key to look for information when improving your marketing strategies, are your internal departments. Your Customer Service department and Business Development department should be your first stop when looking for customer insights. At the end of the day, they are the people who are speaking to your existing and potential customers all day.
You can do a short survey or questionnaire for each department and ask them which are the most common questions your customers have or which are the pain points that you can address. You might discover that 10% of all customer service enquires could be answered in the form of written content, short video or infographic. This will not only help you stay relevant in terms of content but will also increase customer satisfaction. Let’s face it, nobody likes to be waiting on the phone for the next available customer service adviser!
Another place where I always find content inspiration is Quora, which is a question-and-answer website where questions are asked, answered, edited and organised by its users. You select your interests when registering to the website and the platform personalises the questions that appear on your dashboard. Here is an example of my own personalised feed:
As you can see, my feed is mainly focused around email marketing, SEO, content marketing and marketing in general. What a shocker, right. Back to the topic, Quora is great for finding questions which you can turn into a strong content piece by simply answering them.
3. Show, don’t only tell
As most of you have probably heard already, video is the future of content marketing and it will soon dominate marketing strategies. According to Cisco, video will account for 69% of all consumer internet traffic by the end of this year. In addition to video, other visual content such as infographics, slideshares, screenshots, branded images and so on are also among the most preferred types of content.
No wonder that visual content is taking over, 65% of people are visual learners and 90% of the information coming to the brain is visual. What’s more, our attention span becomes shorter and shorter and we expect content to be designed and structured to be skimmed through and not actually read.
So you need to ensure that your content is diverse and that your written content is always accompanied by something visual to refer to and to make it more engaging.
Remember the importance of showing people how to do something as opposed to only explaining to them what to do. There is a countless number of articles that don’t follow this principle and only explain what to do but not how to do it. Your readers and visitors will vary from experts to beginners in the field and you want to ideally appeal to both (the amateurs will one day become the experts and you want them to be familiar with your brand.
We always try to give practical examples, explain everything down to the tiniest detail or even share personal data if it can help us get the point across.
4. Stay on top of trends
In order to stay relevant, it is essential to also keep up with your industry trends. You don’t want to be producing content that is out of date as nobody will be interested in reading it. Let’s say that you are in the telephony industry and a new type of phone systems came out recently. The first thing you want to do is write an article about it discussing the benefits, advantages and disadvantages, best features or any other aspects. If you don’t keep up with the trends, your competition will and that’s where the forward-thinking customers will go.
Staying on top of industry trends is extremely important, but keeping up with other trends related to your activity is also important. As discussed, visuals are becoming extremely important and even if marketing is not the field you are operating in, you still should be familiar with that trend in order to stay relevant. The same applies to other trends which can impact your industry or activity.
We hope this article has been of interest. If you want to improve your content strategy but you don’t know where to start, please contact us and we will be more than happy to help!