The copy in your content can be the difference between drawing in a potential customer or losing them.
When your audience reads your copy, you want the words to capture their attention and compel them to take further action. Thankfully, the best way to accomplish this is the same across all industries, for businesses big or small, working in the B2B or B2C space:
Put yourself in your ideal customer’s shoes and ask, “What’s in it for me?”
To do that takes some research and imagination, but it’s easy with these steps:
Step 1—Pinpoint your target audience
Before you put a pen to paper or click New Document, take a moment to think about who your target audience is. While you may want to appeal to everyone, that’s an impossible task; if you want to succeed you need to have a target to aim for. Defining who your target audience is makes your content and your business more successful.
Start by thinking about who your ideal customer is and answer as many relevant questions that narrow them down into a character or persona as possible. These questions could include:
- How old are they?
- What level of education have they achieved?
- Where do they live and work?
- What is their income level?
Ask a lot of questions to get as specific as possible. Sometimes it can be helpful to create an imaginary ideal customer out of these questions. Having this imaginary person in mind as the person you are writing to when you are creating content can help you during the writing process. Though not everyone may need to go into this much detail it’s important to know the basics of who you are trying to target.
Once you have decided on your target, learn more about them. Look up relevant data about customers within the demographics they fall under and observe how customers like them interact with your product or service. Knowledge is power, so try to learn as much about them as you can.
Step 2—Dissect their pain point
Try walking a mile in your target’s shoes. Take the research that you’ve done about them and try to envision what your target feels when they interact with product or service providers like you. You’ll have to use a good dose of imagination and empathy.
What makes them happy, empowered, and comforted? What makes them sad, frustrated, confused or angry?
Content that is compelling and effective almost always has an emotional aspect to it. Humans are emotional and emotion is proven to be the main driver of purchase decisions. Tapping in to this ensures that the positive or negative emotion felt will help your reader personally connect to the content you create. You can use this to motivate them to make a purchase or further engage with your company.
Step 3—Communicate their pain point
With the emotional intelligence that you’ve collected, let the information guide you when explaining the benefits of either gaining something pleasant or removing something unpleasant through the use of your product or service.
The goal here is to have your target relate emotionally to the pain point you are communicating. This will help capture their attention and compel them to keep reading.
An important thing to keep in mind while writing your copy is how you are communicating with your reader. While you are writing think about what kind of tone does your target want you to speak in? Do they want to get information from someone with a formal tone that makes them feel like you’re a professional expert that they can trust or do they want someone friendly who they feel is approachable and easy to go to for advice? What platform are you using to communicate with them and what are the formalities or informalities of that platform? If you’re publishing an article on LinkedIn it’s likely going to have a different tone from an Instagram post. Tailoring the tone of your copy to be conducive to your target and the platform you are communicating with them on can help make your content appear natural and attractive.
Step 4—Direct them to the next step
Once you’ve captured your reader you can now complete the final step of your content—directing your target to take further action. This is done through a CTA (call to action).
The actions that you are calling your audience to take are specific to your business. For example, if you’re a gym writing a blog post about why it’s beneficial to have a personal trainer you would imagine it’s a no-brainer that the reader would then contact your gym to book a personal training session but holding your reader’s hand to get them to the next step is essential. Following this example, closing with a link to an online registration form for a personal training session or a contact page that can allow the reader to get in touch with your company by phone for booking a session makes it easier for your target audience to take that next step. This makes what your audience should do next obvious and helps improve the chances of them taking the next step by making the process easy and accessible.
You can use content to help your business achieve its goals by determining the action you want your target to take and building your content around it.
Follow these four simple steps to help take your content to the next level, making it more effective when driving your business forward.
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