When you are able to structure your content correctly for digital audiences and use language that is appealing to them, you are well on your way to connecting in a much more impactful way. Taking the guesswork out of this by using tools designed to help you can only improve results.
There are a few other things that can help you entice your intended audience to connect, share and come back for more content. These recommendations are nice arrows to have in your quiver, but remember that you need to consider each with your audience, their knowledge level, and the use of engaging language. These suggestions will draw your audience in and keep them with you.
In a world filled with both great and not so great content, it is important to stand out from the herd. Creating a title for your work that will entice your audience to read your piece over someone else’s is increasingly important. In most cases it’s your title that gets shared on social platforms, so the title is the calling card for your work. If your audience shares your content, it will be your title that the secondary audience will consider before they come to your site.
There are a number of really good tips to use when creating a title, but what you need to do is consider your audience. The best advice is to keep your title positive with language appropriate for them. Use personal pronouns, establish your title with superlatives and generate excitement about what they are going to read.
While you are certainly considering your audience, their knowledge level and the structure of your content, also consider your paragraph density. Your readers are likely on the go, viewing content on a smartphone or tablet, and they will scroll past lengthy paragraphs. Each sentence does not need to stand on it’s own but consider the viewing area of these devices as you construct your paragraphs. The greater your paragraph’s density, the less likely it will connect in a meaningful way.
You should also consider their cognitive state when reading your content. They likely aren’t reading your content in a vacuum apart from their daily lives, so daunting paragraphs will alienate them.
Your goal is to connect with your audience and provide them with something that is either informative or entertaining. Imagine being presented with a volume of content filled with dense paragraphs. If it looks like homework or a PHD thesis, the engagement that you draw from that piece of content will be low. Of course, always consider audience, and how they want content structured. In certain scenarios, denser paragraphs are appropriate. Consider the context of your writing relative to the needs of your audience.
Passive vs. Active Voice
It is a commonly taught rule in journalism schools to keep your audience’s attention, it’s imperative that you write in active rather than passive voice. Great writers can flip back and forth between active and passive voice and do it so well that the author is often unaware.
Data science demonstrates that active voice engages and passive voice detaches, resulting in costly lost opportunities. When you consider a digital audience at any knowledge level, they are looking for information that is quick and easy to understand. If they are reading your content from a mobile device, they are less likely to spend time deciphering a sophisticated writing style and will stop engaging with your content. Creating meaningful content that considers your audience first is how you will build and deepen your community.
If you want to see results for your own content efforts, learn more about how to create awesome content for real people in our ultimate guide.