John Taylor writes on the topic of keeping your reader in mind as you blog….
It doesn’t matter what kind of web site you have you must understand your target audience and know what it is that they want. Please notice that I used the word want and not the word need. There is a world of difference between wants and needs. For example you might need a means of getting from A to B and almost any vehicle would fulfil that need; but what you really want is a top of the range BMW!
I write my blog with just one person in mind. In my minds eye I have come to know that person intimately, I understand his goals, his dreams and his aspirations and I know the things that really interests him. He is my ideal reader, he soaks up every word and he clicks every link I include in each blog post.
Clearly, you can’t please all the people all of the time. So, the best strategy is to focus on pleasing the people you can influence. You don’t want passive readers, you want people who will take action. Readers who will click a link because you have recommended a new eBook or a new software product. Readers who will click the “Buy Now” button and earn you an affiliate commission.
So, what do you need to know about your target audience?
You will get two types of people coming to your site… People with whom you have built up a relationship and who like to read your blog. People who have come to your site for the very first time. You have two jobs to do. You have to keep the first type of people coming back and you have to grab the second type of people’s attention, persuade them to stay long enough to engage their interest and to convert them to loyal readers.
Just think – when you are online what is it that you want to achieve? The majority of people online are looking for
something. It’s unlikely that they are just surfing in a random fashion, although some people will do that. When online people are usually looking for specific information or seeking the solution to a problem.
Your job as a blogger is to make that information, and those solutions, available so that they can be found. In other words your content must closely match the wants of your target audience.
Make sure that your blog has a well defined theme and try to stick to making posts that stay on topic. Keep up to data with the news within the theme of your blog and provide your readers with your opinions on relevant and interesting items. Encourage feedback and always respond to questions from your readers.
Use a blog script or service that allows the easy addition of RSS feeds so that your blog site has fresh new content as soon as it is available.
Above all remember that each and every visitor to your site is a real person with feelings and emotions and be prepared to reveal something yourself in your posts. Your readers are much more likely to trust you if you allow them to get to know you.