I sat at the kitchen table with a glass of orange juice, as Pat fed Jeanie. Jeanie, only 11 months old, and a happy little imp, had sweet potato around her mouth and between her fingers. She loves sweet potato. Suddenly, looking right at me, Jeanie stuck a finger in a nostril and stuck out her tongue. Cue the spit take as juice sprayed out of my mouth. I couldn’t help it! She made me laugh. We both laughed while her mom could only shake her head. Clearly, Jeanie had found her audience: Me.
When I came by, my friend had told me to behave and to not encourage any shenanigans. “Laughing only makes her do it more,” she told me. And then she asked where in the world she could have learned to do that. I shrugged very innocently. It made me wish it was always so easy to know what to put out there when trying to get a reaction from an audience. Knowing what kind of content to share, and with whom can be a toughie.
What do you want…and who are you anyway?
When considering writing digital content, several questions come up, but what can keep you up at night, is what do you share/communicate to people, and more importantly, who do you share it with?
While you may have a preference when it comes to the type of content you want to produce, you have to make sure that an audience for it exists, and then be able to find them (market directly to them). Of course, knowing there is a need (a hungry audience) for a certain kind of content, helps you figure out what to produce…if you decide to take on that audience.
You be you. I’ll be me.
When it comes to writing digital media, what and who are undeniably interconnected. If you choose a certain audience, you are obligated to produce a certain type of content, but if you know what you want to create, then research may be required to find a receptive audience.
Knowing your audience ahead of time will shape how you represent your brand. The tone of your content must take into consequence the demographics of your audience. Their lifestyle and how they choose to interact with your content will tell you what type of content and voice to use.
If you already know what type of content you plan on writing, you will need a clear idea of your content goals. What do you want to happen when people read it? Sounds deep, but don’t kid yourself, this is business. You will have to find, reach out, and then draw in your audience. Your business goals should mirror your content goals if you are to have any success.
It takes time to know how well your content is doing out there. Be patient, but if you use the platform(s) best suited to your content, you’re off to a good start. Your choice of platform is based on your audience—where they “congregate”, and get their content, your content should also be suitable for those places.
The platform you use also determines what to track in order to measure your success. Most platforms will use likes, which are easy to track, but it’s the shares and retweets that hold the best value. You want people spreading the word—passing on what you have shared. It is the best way to grow your audience.
Let’s grow together
We’ve seen it before. A young child does something purposely, because of the reaction he or she gets from the people around them. As they get older, and they receive different feedback from their audience, their material matures (hopefully). There is a constant back-and-forth between what content is posted, and the audience it is done for. If that relationship is nurtured, both sides will benefit for a long time.
T-Shirt photo: © 2015 Spreadshirt