Are you writing for your audience? Whether you’re writing a novel, a self-help book, or a marketing and promotion piece for your business or product, are you reaching your audience? How would you know? Writing effective content doesn’t always mean understanding algorithms, ranking, or keywords.
You can strategically place keywords into any written content but that doesn’t mean it will be successful – at least in the way you want. It’s much like how digital eBooks are ranked: it’s not about quality – it’s about consistency. Unfortunately, a top-ranking book or page may have followed all the ‘rules’ about ranking and be, well… lackluster.
Because you don’t want to write for a computer algorithm. You want to write for – and reach – a human being.
Reaching your target audience
Humans read for clarity. It doesn’t matter whether you’re producing a brochure, a technical manual, a webpage, or a blog. Clarity is essential. You want your reader to come away from your piece with a clear understanding for your story, about your product, or your organization. That means using the right ‘language’ for your audience. It means communication – not just through words, but also through your use of words.
To reach your target audience you also need to translate what’s in your head and get it onto paper or a computer screen (insert other applicable devices here) in a cohesive and concise manner. Is your piece well-written? Lacking grammar mistakes? Properly formatted? Reaching your audience means being able to tell good writing from poor writing. It doesn’t matter whether it’s an email or a business proposal.
Your content must be credible and professional. This is not to imply that you must have a degree in journalism to write something, but at the very least, know the basics of grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure. That’s what good writing is all about.
What exactly is ‘good’ writing?
Differentiating good writing from bad isn’t difficult. Read a piece and ask yourself some questions:
- Did you understand what you just read?
- Did the piece succeed in achieving its intention?
- Is the content structure easy to follow?
- Did the piece ‘connect’ with you or leave you feeling ‘blah’
- Did the piece educate or inform?
Good writing isn’t just about writing style or tone or even ability to ‘hide’ keywords in strategic places. It’s about transforming your original idea into words that trigger an emotion, promote inspiration, or stimulate an action. Have you done that? Can you do that?