Why writing for a narrow audience can boost your business

 

Are you going about your content creation all wrong?

When you’re starting out, creating content to attract as many people as possible and win more clients seems like a great goal.

After all, if you throw enough darts at your target, you’ll hit the bullseye eventually. Right?

Wrong.

Based on the number of times my darts have pierced the plaster of a pub wall, I know for sure that’s not true!

When you’re unclear who you’re writing for, you run the risk of concentrating on the wrong people and attracting the wrong clients.

Or worse – delivering a vague or confusing message that fails to target anyone at all.

A better approach for long-term success is to determine who your ideal clients are – and concentrate on writing copy or content that appeals to them ahead of everyone else.

 

Ignore the urge to write for a broad audience

 

When you’re creating content, remembering who ISN’T your target audience can be every bit as powerful as understanding who is.

In the early days of your business, you want and need customers. It’s normal to feel that anyone is better than no one. But while this approach might lead to short term wins, it can also result in long term pain.

I was in the audience at Copy Con 2018 when small business guru, Robert Gerrish talked about the challenges of handling difficult clients.

He joked that in the early days, our ideal client is anyone with a heartbeat and a credit card.

We all laughed. But it was that nervous laughter that goes hand-in-hand with recognition of an embarrassingly familiar yet painful memory.

The reality is, if you try to attract everyone – you’ll be too general to resonate with anyone.

Website visitors will bounce off your page in search of someone who understands their problem and offers the solution to fix it.

If, early on, you work at attracting your ideal clients into your business – you’ll be less likely to need a strategy for difficult clients, later on.

 

Be clear about who you are writing for and who you’re not

 

Do you know who you serve, and how you serve them? Being clear about this helps you streamline and sharpen your message every time you write copy or content for your business.

Do your research:

• Who are the people searching for your service or product? Make a list and create some personas

• What problems do they have that you can solve? Discover what people are saying online

• What language do they use when they talk about their problem or the solution? Pay attention and use the same language

Still struggling?

Try thinking about the people you’re definitely not writing for. Make a list to help you clarify who’s excluded from your target audience.

Ask yourself:

  • Are you focused on reaching your target audience?
  • Have you acknowledged their problems and offered solutions?
  • Have you accidentally let someone outside your target audience influence your writing?

One of the most common distractions can be to think about our industry peers when we create marketing material of any kind.

For example, I work with small business owners who need help with their copywriting and content creation. They are my target audience and my ideal clients sit within this group.

But, if I forget who I’m writing for and think about other copywriters instead, I’ll change my language and my message – in the end – my copy or content won’t resonate with anyone.

So, before you can reach your ideal clients and write copy or content they relate to, you need to understand who they are and who they are not.

 

Narrow your audience to reach the right people

Once you understand the needs and wants of your target audience, it’s easier to write more directly to them. By doing so, you will naturally exclude readers who are not your ideal clients.

Here are three easy ways to target a specific audience:

Use appropriate language: usually, jargon or complex language is unhelpful when you’re writing for a general audience.

But if you want to attract experienced members of a specific industry – they’ll be comfortable with jargon – they may even expect it. So, go ahead and use it to show you speak their language.

Don’t be afraid to talk about problems: you want the right people to recognise themselves when they read your web copy, emails or blogs. So, it’s vital you talk about the challenges they’re facing.

This is the most effective way to engage your target audience’s attention. Then, you can offer a solution that will make their lives easier or better.

Focus on specific issues: when you’re precise about the problems you solve, you might attract fewer potential clients. But they’re more likely to be further along their buying journey because they’re seeking a specific solution.

Consequently, their enquiry is more likely to convert to a sale.

So, whether you’re writing copy for your website or creating new content for your marketing or social media, it’s essential you ask yourself, ‘who am I writing for’.

Don’t lose sight of the answer.

Focus on them.

And don’t be afraid to use writing tactics to narrow down your audience to attract more of your ideal clients.

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