Talking face-to-face is very different from writing. When we have conversations, we know who we’re talking to and thus, we know who are audience is. We can adjust our speed to get our message across in a way that will best appeal to that particular person or group.
When we write, we’re always writing to an audience, whether we think about it or not. That’s why the type of content we produce depends largely on the audience that we’re writing for.
Think About It
Keeping your audience in mind when writing can help us make better decisions about not only what information we include, but the organization and formatting of the piece. Effective writing is selfless; it must use language that reflects the audience, not the writer. To write effectively, the writer must transcend his or her personal perspective and consider the interests of the readers, which is not always the easy to achieve.
Here are a few helpful questions to ask yourself before you put your fingers to the keyboard:
- Who is my audience? (age, sex, education, etc.)
- What do I want my audience to know after reading my piece?
- What might they already know about the subject?
- What do they care about?
- Why will they read it?
- How do they expect to be spoken to?
Answering these questions will help you to narrow down the specific audience that you’ll be trying to target with your writing. By adjusting your tone to that audience, you’ll be able to communicate more effectively and get your message across more clearly.
Once you understand the audience you’re writing for, the next step is to improve your blog’s readability factor. A majority of people, especially on the internet, are “scanners.” That means instead of reading through an entire article, they will scan it for the important information.
Keeping that in mind, there are a few key measures to take to ensure your content catches and keeps the attention of online users. First, provide points of entry like headlines, subheadings, and bulleted lists; this breaks up the information and lets readers jump in wherever their eye goes first. Next, write under the assumption that readers will scan the article, not ready it thoroughly. With that being said, pack in as much information as you can in these points of entry.