“Always make the audience suffer as much as possible,” said Alfred Hitchcock.
This advice works, if your audience loves horror.
Every successful written communication starts with the audience in mind.
This sounds trite and obvious, but it’s surprisingly overlooked in many business communications. If you want to make the most out of your content investments, it is critical to understand your audience first and create customer-focused content.
Developing content is hard work and costly. If your content doesn’t immediately resonate with your audience, all your effort and money is wasted.
For business audiences, you want a romance, not a horror story. You want your audience to be as excited about your product or service as you are. You want them to come back for more again and again. And most importantly, you want them to recommend your product or service to their friends.
To love your audience, you have to know them first.
How do you do that?
You start by listening, with the intention to understand your audience’s challenges and goals. Walk in their shoes for a day. Find out where they go for information. Discover the roadblocks they encounter in getting their jobs done.
Empathize with your audience. That’s where the love starts, because when you care about your audience, you want to help them. More than anything else, you want to make them successful. When their goals supersede your own, they know it, and the romance starts.
This blog is part of a series of content best practices blogs on Getting More Value from Your Content Investments. In my next blog, I’ll talk about how content strategy helps you more effectively deliver information to your audience.