This guest post is by Laura Roeder of LKR Social Media Marketer.
Think about your last ten clients. Did they hire you because they have the same level of knowledge and experience that you do? Or did they choose to work with you because of your expertise?
My guess is that they fall into the second camp: your customers look up to you because you’re farther ahead than they are. They expect you to provide them with advice and guidance to help them move forward in life and business.
Knowing this, why are so many blogs speaking to their industry and not their customers? You’ve seen it, and you’ve probably been guilty of it—posts filled with jargon and industry news. Maybe it seems like the articles your customers need are too simple: that information’s basic, it’s been written about before, and therefore, it’s not valuable.
Too many businesses err on the side of writing what they find to be useful or valuable, not what their clients need to know most.
Let’s use an example from my business, LKR Social Media. Our customers are people who learning the ropes of using social media for their businesses.
Because social media is our world, we know all the jargon, all the nuances, all the basics. It would be easy to gloss over some of the simpler setup details in our tutorial-style posts because we could make an assumption that everyone already knows how to do them. But, based on who our customers are, we can’t make that assumption!
We make sure that we always break down each topic to its simplest steps, making it easy for business owners at all levels to implement what we are teaching. We don’t assume that you already know how to set up a Facebook page, or mention someone on Twitter, or use RSS.
So, how do you ensure that you are writing for your customers, and not your peers?
1. Avoid jargon or technical terms
Use clear, concise language that everyone can understand. You do not need to use jargon or fancy terms to come across as an expert; simply blogging regularly and providing valuable information will accomplish that.
2. Break how-tos into action steps
Don’t assume that just because you know how to do something, everyone else does too. Break down instructions into simple action steps that someone just starting out on your topic can follow.
3. Write your posts for one person, not your entire audience
You might find it strange to think about singling one person out to write to in your posts. But the value in speaking to one person instead of a group is that usually, most people are sitting down, alone, to read your blog. There probably isn’t a huge group of your followers crowded around a laptop in a coffee shop all reading it together. For example, write “you” instead of “you guys.” The same goes for video blogs: speak to a single viewer, not to your entire audience.
If you find, after reading this, that much of your blog content was actually written for your peers (people at your level) versus your customers, that’s okay! It’s not too late to start. For your next blog post, keep these three pointers in mind to help you write content that will help your customers.
You’ll start to notice if this strategy is working by looking at a few key analytics:
- how long people are staying on your site
- how many articles they are clicking through to read in one sitting
- whether you are getting more subscriptions to your email list
- whether you are generating more sales.
Increased numbers in these areas are sure signs that you’re writing for the right crowd.
Laura Roeder, founder of LKR Social Media Marketer, is a social media marketing expert who teaches small businesses how to become welcome-known and claim their brand online. Follow her on Twitter or find her on Facebook!