I had one of the biggest business lessons of my life a couple of weeks ago. Here’s the thousand dollar lesson: you got to meet your market where they are at, and not where you’re at.
Someone I respect and listened to said: No one wakes up and say: I want to be financially literate. Everybody wakes up and say: I want to be rich. No one wakes up and say: I want to build up core strength. Everybody says: I want to a 6 pac.
You got to pay attention to the language that your audience uses.
The concept of mastering the language of your audience will go a LONG way to help you connect with your audience. I once started a self development site and all I wrote were nerdy self development topics with complicated psychologically research theories that no one understood.
You see, what I didn’t understand was that no wakes up and say: ‘I want to be a better person’. Everybody wakes up and say: ‘I want to get more dates’, ‘I need to finish what I’ve started’ or ‘I need to get a better job’ and etc.
So, how does mastering the language of your audience relate to search engine optimization?
Good SEO Equals Mastering the Language of Your Audience
When I was an SEO consultant, I used to go around mouthing off on technical SEO terms to business owners. I also read nerdy SEO blogs filled with SEO jargon. I soon figured that if I wrote and spoke like an SEO technician, nerding out about citation sources, on page SEO, conversion rates optimization, backlinks acquisition, HTML coding, bounce rate, time on page and etc.
These business owners will not know what I am talking about.
- Business owners know nothing technical SEO
- They aren’t saying to themselves: ‘how to identify low-effort/high yield pages for quick SEO fixes’
- They are saying: ‘I want to rank high on Google’
Yes, I can write long nerdy technical guides. However, am I selling to SEO nerds, or am I selling to small business owners in Singapore? Well, it’s the latter.
If I wrote and spoke in manner that’s understandable by my audience, then I’ll have a higher chance of persuading them.
To do this, I’ll ask them simple understandable questions such as:
- How are you getting your sales?
- Do you have a website?
- Is your website bringing in sales?
- Do you know that your competitor is ranked higher than you on Google?
- Do you know that hundreds of people are searching for ‘X service’ on Google and you can get your website to appear when people are searching for that?
When you’re writing for your audience by mastering the language of your audience, they’ll find your articles more relatable and will be glued to your content. You’ll have a low bounce rate, an increased time spent on page, increased user engagement, hence, signaling to Google that your site is of high quality and Google will in turn rank you higher on search engine results.
Listening to Your Audience
Writing for your audience can be figured out in a couple of ways:
- Real life conversations
This is simple, simply pay attention to what your customers are using. What are their fears when it comes to your service or product? One of my clients from my SEO course blurted out: am I too old to learn SEO? Is it too technical?
That’s extremely important data. Some of these business owners are worried that SEO is too technical, and someone their age isn’t able to learn it. That’s one of my target market’s fear.
You can Google ‘X keyword + Forum’ and look at the threads on a forum. You should pay attention to the actual phrases and terms people use.
One good example is the weight loss niche.
People aren’t waking up and say: ‘I want to lose weight and be healthy!’ People are saying: ‘Damn, I want to fit into my jeans once again.’
You can learn from your target audience by surveying them. You can blast out an email to your current subscribers by asking them what they want to hear from you. When clients come through my website, I meet up with them 1:1 and I pay attention to what they say to me, and the language they use. This can also help with your company’s market positioning.
You’ll want their words, not your interpretation of them. The key here is to be shameless and start conversations with your target audience.
- Amazon Reviews of Similar Products
- Reddit or other online posting sites
- Facebook groups
Tim Ferris recommends that you read 4-5 star reviews, as those have the most insight about what the reviewer liked and didn’t like.
When you have these data, it’s helpful to record them on an excel document and highlight the key pain points that you see and want to remember.
Become a Master Story Teller
Did you notice that I like using stories in my articles?
For the majority of human civilization, stories are an effective way to transmit information. Story telling is also proven to help people learn and remember information.
This is why I choose to write everything myself. That’s because I have a fuck ton (oh yeah I swear as well) of stories from my own life experiences in business, digital marketing and etc to share.
Instead of bombarding people with technical information, you should insert stories within your content to make it more interesting and readable.
The majority of personal finance blogs in Singapore bore me to death. You get the ones that don’t know what they’re talking about, and on the other spectrum, you get the ones that splashes scientific data on every single post or article. Hey, no one wakes up and say: I want to learn the 4 factor model in investing. Everyone says: Is the stock market risky?
They aren’t writing for their audience and they aren’t including personal stories. That makes their content stale and boring.
The best writers know how to fit technical knowledge in a relatable and fun way for their audience. The best pieces of content are the ones that balance out authority and popularity.
Genuine content that sells starts with truly understanding the needs of your audience through surveys, conversations and online research. You can then use this research and address them in your articles, sales pages and products.