It is not easy to captivate your audience these days. The best way for you to do this is by developing a persona that entices people. It will allow them to relate with the person and be interested in what they have to say or show. Here are 11 helpful tips on how you can develop such a persona:
I have the coolest job in the world: I make a living by writing. “That’s not a genuine job!” you may think, as do many others. It is possible for everyone to write!” Sure, we all learn to write in school, so it should be easy cash, right? Wrong!
Writing entails much more than just putting pen to paper, or rather, fingers to the computer. Sure, everyone who can write can generate material, but not everyone can write content that is compelling.
Before you throw up the towel and start looking for expert writers on Upwork and Fiverr, keep reading because I’m going to give you a handful of strategies to help you produce content that’s both interesting and enjoyable to read.
What Is Engaging Content, Exactly?
We’ve all flipped through the channels on TV, looking for shows that piqued our interest.
We may come upon something intriguing, but within five minutes, we go for the remote and continue browsing. The next show we come upon seems to be better, and we get completely absorbed in it.
With documentaries, we often receive “well, I never knew that!” moments. We then feel enlightened towards the conclusion of the program.
The mystery of what will happen next in a drama series keeps us on the edge of our seats, chewing our nails in anticipation. And, of course, that show finishes just at the key point, leaving us on the edge of our seats until the next episode (or, heaven forbid, the next series.)
That, my dears, is my pathetic demonstration of what makes material fascinating.
The same is true for written information. If a novel is uninteresting, no one will complete it, but if it is fantastic, we will purchase more books by the same author. Similarly, we purchase periodicals to learn about hobbies and diversions that we love. As a result, it stands to reason that visitors to your website are interested in what you have to say.
Visitors to your site, like readers of books and periodicals, need a reason to keep reading and returning for more. They’ll go to Google to locate more intriguing websites if it’s dull, repetitive, or doesn’t teach them anything they don’t already know. However, if it is engaging, educational, and well-written, people will consider the time spent reading it to be time well spent rather than time squandered.
The following is the rest of the article.
Measuring Engagement with Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
I believe you now understand the distinction between dull and entertaining material. However, you’re certainly curious as to how to determine whether or not your material is engaging.
That’s a great question, and I’m delighted you brought it up.
There are various techniques to see whether your writings are capturing the attention of your target audience:
- Readers will be able to ask questions, share their thoughts, and provide advise if you allow comments on your blog and social network postings. This will allow you to determine how engaged they are. Inviting readers to leave a remark on your post may also provide useful input, but be sure to answer where appropriate, since visitors want you to interact with them.
- Allowing people to like (or thumbs up) your article is also a great method to gauge interest.
- Dislikes: If visitors may hate material (for example, on YouTube), don’t take any thumbs down personally; you’ll never be able to satisfy everyone all of the time. Instead, think of dislikes as (a) feedback that your material may need some work, and (b) proof that someone has looked at and interacted with it.
- Shares: People share social media and blog content so that others are aware of them. It’s a different kind of measurable engagement.
- Followers: If people like your work, they may want to follow you so they don’t miss out on future updates. This is simple to accomplish on social media, but consider enabling people to subscribe to your website so you can keep them up to date.
- Polls: Nothing prevents you from including a quick poll at the conclusion of your postings, allowing readers to vote on how they felt about them. You might also conduct monthly or ad-hoc surveys to ask readers which subjects they’d want to see more of, and so on. This increases engagement and provides you with useful feedback.
- Statistics and analytics: Tools like Google Analytics make it easy to collect data on metrics like page visits, time spent on pages, bounce rates, and so on.
My Top Tips for Creating More Engaging Content!
So, now that you know what engaging content is and how to measure it, here are eleven helpful hints to help you write more captivatingly.
Unsplash photo by Vadim Bozhko
Tip 1: Know who you’re talking to.
Knowing your audience is crucial since it allows you to tailor your work to their needs. Creating a character of a typical reader is a strange but effective approach to achieve this.
Consider who you want to target if you run a cooking blog, for example. Are they stay-at-home moms searching for simple family recipes? Or are they fine-dining and wine connoisseurs? In any case, even thinking about them conjures up a picture of a normal reader.
Consider their age, gender, and social background, among other factors. Then, after you’ve created a vivid mental picture of that reader, put it on paper. It may seem silly, but draw a picture of the person you’re imagining and annotate it.
All of this will help you create a persona for your target reader and tailor your content appropriately.
Tip #2 – Be enthused about what you’re doing.
Don’t spend your time writing about something you’re not passionate about.
It might be difficult to write about topics that we aren’t really fond of. That would be soccer in my instance, which I despise. Sure, I know enough about it to write an essay on it, but it would be a waste of time since I have no interest in the sport. Even a large sum of money is unlikely to make a significant effect.
The topics we are enthusiastic about, on the other hand, are the simplest to write about.
I’m an author. I like writing. I also like assisting others. As a result, writing this post is a dream come true for me. I’d want to share my content producing experiences with others, and I’d like to see people profit from my expertise. In fact, I’m rather convinced that this essay shows my excitement for and expertise in writing, and I’ll be monitoring the KPIs on a frequent basis to see whether you all agree!
3rd tip: Don’t bluff.
In many ways, this is a continuation of Tip 3. Don’t write about a topic about which you have little knowledge.
“You can’t bulls**t a bulls**tter,” as the saying goes, is true. If you don’t know much about a topic, you could be inclined to bluff. My advise is to avoid it since you’ll end up writing erroneous and uninteresting crap. Furthermore, your lack of expertise will be obvious right away, and you risk receiving negative feedback that will make you appear like an idiot.
Instead, seek advice from someone who is knowledgeable about the issue or do your own study. It’s remarkable how much of a difference a few well-researched facts can make to an article. The key is not to go any farther and start babbling as if you’re an expert when you aren’t.
Create Value for Your Readers (Tip 4)
‘Value’ is a phrase that most people associate with money. However, it has a wide range of implications.
‘Value’ in the context of compelling material includes:
- Addressing readers’ concerns, for example, by anticipating and addressing their inquiries.
- Telling them something they didn’t know about the issue before.
Assume you own a company that sells draught excluders. Without meaning to upset anybody in the draught excluder industry, isn’t it not the least interesting topic?
In any case, you might establish a blog to drive traffic to your website and market your company. “5 Ways to Seal Drafty Windows” or “A Simple Strategy for Cutting Your Heating Bills” might be subjects on the blog.
Draft excluders don’t seem so boring now, do they? This is because articles published in this way provide value to readers by educating, advising, and addressing their issues.
Tip #5: Give your readers something to do.
Producing intriguing material is nice and wonderful, but it becomes more engaging when the reader is compelled to do more than simply read it.
Asking somebody to do something doesn’t have to be a direct request; asking questions is a wonderful method to encourage rather than force connection. For example, I usually end most of my posts with a set of questions for readers to consider. “Please comment below,” I’ll add sometimes, although it’s not always required since the questions are frequently enough to elicit responses.
Of course, if the situation calls for it, you may be much more overt, such as leveraging the material to direct the reader to a call to action.
Returning to the draught excluder article “A Simple Strategy for Cutting Your Heating Bills,” for example, the post may discuss how installing excluders to doors and windows can assist minimize heat loss. It would then propose appropriate goods from the business catalog, which would be accessible through a CTA link or button.
Tip #6 – Get In Touch With Your Emotions
Humans are complicated beings that are influenced by a wide spectrum of emotions.
Smart content authors are aware of their readers’ emotions and know how to influence them.
Charity writers, for example, utilize tales that pull at people’s emotions and inspire them to give generously. The tales may be heartbreaking and guilt-inducing. Alternatively, they may have a joyful ending that depends on the ‘feel good factor’ to make people feel giving and pleased.
Consider what makes your readers tick and try to get inside their heads. Are they, for example, empathetic people who react strongly to happy tales, or pragmatic people who want straight answers to direct questions?
Tip #7 – Use the Correct Tone
In Tip 1, I discussed why it’s critical to know your audience and have a mental image (or physical representation) of a typical reader in order to develop the correct content.
However, having the correct content is just half of the equation: how you contact your audience is the other half. That’s because it has an influence on your readers’ perceptions of you (or your brand in the case of companies), which in turn has an impact on their desire to connect with you.
Consider the following scenario: you own a lifestyle website aimed towards adolescents. If your material is stiff, formal, and reads like it was written by Prince Charles, you’ll attract no viewers. Teenagers like everything to be peppy and hip, so be that person while writing for them, even if you’re 85 and drink a glass of Steradent every night.
Similarly, if your audience consists of accomplished company owners, write in a tone that reflects their status.
However, there is one condition. Use a suitable tone, but not at the price of your individuality. So, even in formal settings, it’s OK to utilize comedy — just make sure it’s suitable for your audience.
Tip #8 – Be Correct
This is a no-brainer, proving the cliché that “if you give a dog a terrible name, it stays.”
If your material contains errors and inconsistencies, it won’t be long before your viewers notice and lose faith in you.
Articles that are jam-packed with useful, reliable information, on the other hand, will not only earn readers’ confidence, but will also establish you as an expert on the topic. As a consequence, people will be attracted to your work on a regular basis.
Tip #9: Don’t Limit Yourself to Words
People don’t say “a picture is worth a thousand words” for no reason, and breaking up a sea of text with a few pictures is crucial even in online material.
The important thing is to make sure the picture is relevant and in the right context. You wouldn’t include a picture of a goldfish in a beef stew recipe, for example. No, it would be completely unrelated and out of context. Instead, you’d probably start with a great shot of the final meal and maybe a few additional photos illustrating the cooking technique.
And when I say ‘image,’ I don’t mean a snapshot. Instead, it may be a painting or sketch, an infographic, a table, or a chart – anything that adds visual interest and keeps visitors interested.
Tip ten: Use attention-getting headlines and introductions.
What motivates you to read a certain newspaper or magazine article? Of course, there’s the headline.
The same is true for online material. A catchy, attention-getting title piques people’s interest in what you have to say and motivates them to continue reading.
The beginning is also crucial. That should pique readers’ interest just enough to make them want to keep reading, but not so much that they feel compelled to.
11th Tip: Read What You’ve Written
Put it aside for a bit after you’ve done writing. Have a cup of coffee or go for a stroll. Have a nap, if you like. Then go back and go through what you’ve written again.
By doing so, you’ll be able to look at the text with (semi)fresh eyes. As a result, you’ll not only catch problems Grammarly missed, but you’ll also get a sense of how well it reads and how interesting it is from other people’s viewpoints.
You could notice that it requires a few small changes after reading it. Alternatively, you may need to rehash large portions of it. In the worst-case situation, you could opt to toss everything out and start again. However, the conclusion from this technique is that your material will be as polished as possible before reaching your intended audience.
What techniques do you do to make your content more engaging?
Unsplash photo by Wes Hicks
The advice I’ve given isn’t the be-all and end-all of creating compelling content. They will, however, assist you in writing consistently and focusing on what matters most – your target audience. The same criteria apply whether you’re writing for a commercial website, a personal blog, or social media.
I’d love to hear about your golden guidelines for creating compelling content, so please share them in the comments area below.
Also, keep in mind that my fees are really fair if you need someone to produce compelling material for you.
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