Marketing maven Chris Brogan has an excellent post today on writing content and knowing your audience. In it, he asks:
Are you writing more for your buyers or more for your colleagues? And how does that impact your business?
If you’re blogging for business, your goal is to position your site as the “go to” source for valuable and trustworthy information in your niche. You can’t get there without understanding your audience and their needs first. Here’s a couple of different things you need to ask yourself before you can position yourself as the “go to” source of information…
- What do your readers need? What problems are they facing that you can provide answers to?
- What kind of content do they respond to? What kind of questions are they asking that you can provide answers to?
Knowing What Your Market Wants
Mosts businesses fail because they operate on assumptions over what the market wants rather than taking the time to figure out exactly what the market wants. You don’t launch an ebook because someone else did it and it worked for them. You start with identifying a need and finding ways to fulfill it while working through the questions outlined above. There’s a difference between blindly launching a product just to launch a product and launching a product that answers a pressing question/problem readers are facing and want answers to.
So, the question of the day is… How do you know what your readers need and want? Are you making assumptions or have you conducted a survey? Do they voice their frustrations via blog comments, on social networks, etc.? Have you asked them directly?
Every time that you write a post that answers a reader question, you’re educating and building trust. You’re establishing your credibility and showing people that you know what you’re talking about. This is selling. Because really, all you’re doing is overcoming objections about what you do and what you know by providing answers and educating readers with your content. The trick is doing this so well that you become the go to source for valuable and trustworthy information in your niche that people are willing to share.
Your Challenge for Today
What kinds of questions/challenges are your readers facing that you can provide answers to? Make a list, and writing them down. Make a separate list on everything you know about your niche (and a list of things you don’t know). Could you start a post series hi-lighting case studies on the things you do know? How can you re-purpose your content to continuously provide useful, relevant info. to your audience?
Jamey Prezzi says
Every time that you write a post that answers a reader question, you’re educating and building trust. You’re establishing your credibility and showing people that you know what you’re talking about. This is selling.
Thanks for the reminder…….. great post!
Ricardo Bueno says
Thanks Jamey, you rock!
It's something we do every single day, every time we write something (whether we know it or not). The more you write, the more practice you get in, the better you get.
Lewis LaLanne aka Nerd #2 says
One of my favorite marketers, Eben Pagan, built his online dating advice empire with content that revolved entirely around a Q & A format in his emails.
For anyone who wants a first class education on how to give away awesome content that leads to people wanting to give you money, go get on his doubleyourdating list! He has links woven into the emails that take you to products you buy to solve the specific prospect's problem that he is addressing.
All of the content is focused on you, not him. If you're his target audience, you see yourself in the person who's asking the questions. It's absolutely brilliant!
You and Brogan pointed out something I've often been guilty of, writing with advanced level colleagues in mind, when in reality, most people who like the site are beginners. I'm glad I moseyed on over here and got this reminder to help keep me focused on the people who pay my bills for me and bring joy to my life when the succeed using what I share.