How Identifying Your Typical Reader Can Improve Your Blog Content

Have you noticed how our choice of words and manner changes depending on whom we are communicating with?

When you are speaking to your child, your manner is different from when you are speaking with your teenage daughter.

When you speaking to your boss, your manner changes from when you are speaking to your subordinate.

Context is as important as language, as context gives meaning to language.

We are talking about identifying your reader, the prototype of the one person you are writing for.

The person without whom you would just close the lid of your laptop and say, ‘it is not worth it anymore!’

How do you get to know who you are writing for?

Why is it important to know?

When you write your posts, how do you narrow in on the pain points of your audience and provide solutions that are tailor-made for them?

Creating your one person Avatar

Creating your one reader Avatar has nothing to do with guesswork.

It begins with really thinking deep about the who make up your audience, or who you want to make up your audience, and then writing to this person in every future post you write.

I am sure before you started your blog you found time to sit down and define your niche.

Now you have to define your audience to make sure you know who you are writing for.  In fact, this is the number one factor that stands between you and compelling content.

Sadly though, when asked to create a reader avatar, most persons end up with a generic subset of their audience.

‘Males, 28-40, interested in making money online, want to build a mailing list the can promote products to over and over again, willing to buy information products that can help him succeed.’

I am yet to meet any guy who is between the ages of 28-40. People are either 28 or they are 40.

Kapish?

I think it has to do with the word ‘audience’.

An audience has to be more than one person, right?

Wrong!

That’s as broad as a dragnet!

As far as creating your typical reader profile is concerned, you get results when you are specific and narrowed down.

The profile should be so personal that if you see your reader in the street, you should know him.

When writing a blog, remember that you cannot please everybody. The more persons your try to please, the more bland your content becomes so it can address your crowd. Unless your Most Valued Response (MVR) is to bore your readers to death, bland content will hardly convert.

If you write your content to satisfy your one person audience, speak to him as you would to a friend and honestly add all details you need to help him understand the post topic.

This is the avatar I wrote for my ‘man boobs advice’ niche blog:

Eric. 26 years old. He works at a call center as a customer care specialist. His job is sedentary and he hates it so much, especially because sitting on his butt all day is making him go fat in all the wrong places. He loves beach trotting and swimming, but he cannot engage in those sports again since it may get him to come out of his baggy shirts, and , God forbid, expose his man boobs to the world.

His girlfriend says she does not mind his man boobs, but he does and almost never goes bare-chested around her. He is ready to try anything short of surgery to solve his man boobs problem, which is why he is an avid reader of my blog.

Do you know Eric?

Hardly!

I am sure he sounds like a real person to you as he does to me! Now do you think I will have a hard time coming up with content that would be of interest to Eric?

I even have a ‘picture of Eric’ I slide into a frame and place by my laptop before writing any piece of content for the blog.

The nuts and bolts of creating a one person avatar

If you have not already done so, this is the time to create a reader profile of your typical reader. This is the person you will be addressing in future posts you write.

The following questions will help you define who that person is:

  • * What is their sex?
  • * How old are they? Remember, you need a specific age.
  • * Are they single or married?
  • * What is the level of education?
  • * Where do they work? Are they loving it or bearing it?
  • * What are their dreams and aspirations? How does your blog align them with those dreams?
  • * What unique problems are they facing?
  • * What is their biggest fear or worry?
  • * What are they doing on your blog?
  • * What is their name?

Can you think of some other questions that help define your reader?

Action Plan

  1. Look for the face behind your audience. Scout forums and the comment section of niche blogs until you find a person that models who you want to write for.
  2. Describe him in detail by answering the questions above and any other revealing questions you can create.
  3. Give him a name. Preferably this should be a name of a real person you found during your research phase.
  4. Give him a face. Preferably this should be the face of a real person you found during your research.
  5. Write your next post solving a specific problem your one reader is passing through. Do not stop until you are sure he is satisfied with your answer.
About Yeremi Akpan

Yeremi Akpan is the founder of Pro Blogger Tips. Connect with him on Twitter, Google Plus and Facebook. You can also hire him to provide content marketing services for your business.

Comments

  1. Yeremi

    Well that is pretty specific. I think as in your small niche as in man boobs, I can see you would need to zero in on who your audience is and write for “Eric”. But as in this blog, are you writing for a specific person, as I see so many here from different walks of life and different ages?

    I think if ones niche is extremely narrow it would be wise to picture one person. There are many niches that would have a general population, with specific needs and income level, that you would actually need to write for them. But I don’t see needing to write just for one person. Yet the niches could still be targeted for one “group” of people. Just as you would not be interested in a niche of women’s problems, but one would not need to have a specific person to address. It could be women of childbearing age, but their marital status would not necessarily have an effect on the information to be consumed.

    I do believe to stay on target of the kind of message you are trying to convey. Taking into consideration the people who actually participate on your blog one should not go off in an entirely different direction as one could lose all readership. I have a party site which deals with having a party on a budget. I would not put any of that info on my animal site or relationship site. Yet still it would not necessarily be for a specific age group, but most parties are conducted by families and put on by women. But it does not have to be a specific age group. It is more of a specific economic status.

    You have some very valuable information to ponder over.

    Mary
    Mary Stephenson recently posted..Rewards of a FriendshipMy Profile

    • Shahzad says:

      I am totally agreeing with you Marry. I don’t think in my niche there is any need to narrow down content for a single person.

      Great comment!!
      Shahzad recently posted..I Bought This Blog! What’s Next?My Profile

    • Yeremi Akpan says:

      Great comment, Mary!

      When a niche is small, the process of narrowing down your reader avatar becomes easier. However do not quickly conclude that forming a user profile is something that should only be done by those in a small niche.

      Whatever reasons informed our starting our blogs, I would want to imagine that somewhere in that reason was a problem that needed to be solved. Searching for a reader profile is simply searching for the typical person in your audience and addressing your posts to that person.

      Why is this useful even in a broad niche?

      It is better to write a post that connects with a segment of your reader base than have one that tries to connect with everyone and by virtue of trying to be everything to everybody, ends up as nothing.

      Most great content comes from recognizing who our reader is and imagining we are speaking to this one from the heart.

      Is there a risk that by doing this we would end up chasing most of our readers? Yes, some persons may not connect with our writing because it just does not resonate with them. However, if we have done our research well, most of our readers would feel we are writing just for them. We would be a friend speaking to them from the heart.

      That is how rapport is established.

      On the other hand if you try to write for everyone at the same time, your writing would be scattered and uninteresting. When you start with your one person audience to speak to your world, your writing would quickly be elevated and you will grow as a writer.

      If you feel this is a huge step to take, you may consider creating more than one reader avatar representing the different segments of your audience, and then think and address a particular reader avatar depending on the topic and segment of our readers we want to impact.

      Thanks for your comments, Mary and Shahzad!
      Yeremi Akpan recently posted..How Identifying Your Typical Reader Can Improve Your Blog ContentMy Profile

  2. Sapna says:

    Hi Yeremi

    We need to understand the people connect with people if they can quickly relate the content and the content should be created like the true heart speaking.

    We are here to solve the problems and if we want to survive we need to continue doing that.

    Thanks for sharing this great information.

    PS Yeremi, I have replied to your mail. My apologies for the late reply.

    Sapna
    Sapna recently posted..When Nokia was Caught Sleeping – An InfographicMy Profile

  3. Marcel Spitz says:

    Great insights you have shared. Thank you. Will keep coming back to your blog to read more. Happy New Year. Regards
    Marcel Spitz recently posted..David Woods Empower Network is a big hitMy Profile

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