Content Targeting - everything you need to know to enhance how your business ranks in Google
Creating content isn’t always the easiest thing in the world to do. It takes research, careful planning, and a good writer to come up with something good. So, if all that effort is going in to making good content, you also need to be making sure it’s reaching the right people. It can be disheartening knowing that time, effort, and usually money, has gone into content creation but there’s no one reading the end product. To try and minimise the risk of this happening, we’re going to look at some key factors to make sure your content gets read.
Always remember you’re writing your content for a real human being. It can be very easy to get caught up in numbers, monitoring your key performance indicators and forgetting that those digits on screen translate into a pair of real human eyes. It sounds counterintuitive but starting at the end is the best way to make sure your content is going to show up in searches for your intended audience. Consider your end user, a human being, and what sort of things they would ask about the topic, and what they’d want to know. Answer these questions for them, target your keywords properly, and you’re likely to show up in their searches. Remember, it’s always easier to appear in searches for long-tail keywords as they have less competition. Instead of trying to rank for ‘how to make the best cakes’, try something more niche: ‘how to make the best cakes with no eggs’ or ‘how to make the best cake in under 30 minutes’.
Results for ‘best cake recipes’ showing around 4 billion results. Results for ‘best cake recipes in under 30 minutes’ showing nearly 200 million results. Fewer results mean a search query is likely easier to rank for.
Targeting users across the customer funnel and how it can help you optimise your content for SEO
An important part of targeting is knowing which part of the customer journey you want to appeal to. There are different ways of communicating with potential customers who are on different parts of the customer journey. A typical customer funnel consists of 3 stages:
AWARENESS > CONSIDERATION > CONVERSION
One quick and easy to follow example would be travel, and shopping for a holiday.
- Awareness: Researching questions like ‘best places to visit in July’ or ‘cheapest holidays in the snow’
- Consideration: Filling in the finer details like ‘what to pack when going to Majorca’ or ‘do they teach skiing in Austria?’
- Conversion: Acting on research and making a transaction or purchase like ‘cheap hotels in Majorca’ or ‘flights to Austria’
A communication being received by a user at the awareness stage would sound a lot different to a user at the conversion stage. Imagine you’re reading a blog about cars and then consider researching options available to you with the intention of purchasing. If, before even finishing the article you’re being bombarded with messages to ‘buy now’ or ‘click here to see our best car offers’, you might be a bit put off. The awareness stage consists of giving the user information to help them learn about a product or service so that they can become educated enough to decide on whether to progress with their digital journey. The benefit of this content is, the customer should remember where they got the idea and return for more information, or progress further on your site for research or more information. They may feel overwhelmed if they see these calls to action to early on. Make sure your message is targeting the correct stage of the funnel.
A Message that resonates with your target customer
It’s difficult sometimes to create content that has deeper meaning. Often, though, the best way to ensure content is read, and has the furthest reach it can, is to create a message that really resonates with your audience. Creating a lasting impression on someone with some insightful prose can really help to get your content shared, and to make sure that it reaches the right people. If there’s chatter going on around content you’ve created, then you’re doing something right.
Content marketing from Shopify, creating a message that resonated with their audience.
Tone of Voice
Getting the right tone of voice is vital for making sure the right audience connects with your content. Without the correct tonality, your content won’t be read. The tone you use when writing conveys the brand of the company you’re writing for, the authority of the author, and personality. Getting the right balance of friendliness or professionalism is key for if you want your message to be taken seriously. All these things are important and add to the likelihood of your content resonating with the audience. This also dictates your lexis for the content, deciding which set of words are likely to be favoured when writing to prevent content being either too technical, or not technical enough.
Don’t be afraid to specifically target people by job role. Including the title of your audience’s job, or a few words that describe in part what your audience is like, can massively improve your targeting. It’s eye-catching when done correctly, but if done incorrectly can look spammy and illegitimate. Putting these job titles or descriptions into headings can really help to grab your audience and entice them into reading your content, by labelling the content’s intended audience. This can help your intended readers know straight away that a piece is written specifically for them.
Making sure your content is worthy of getting social media shares is always a great way to boost your reach. The likelihood of your content reaching more of the right audience will increase if your content is appearing on social media. Again, targeting comes into this. If your content is professional, include a link or call to action for shares on LinkedIn. If it’s more casual, Twitter and Facebook are great ways to promote exposure. Furthermore, the likelihood of reaching groups of users increases with the use of social media sharing, as groups form on social media of people with similar views, interests, and careers. As soon as you’re into one of these groups, it’s only a matter of time before the rest of the group is reading, and you’ve hit your target audience perfectly.
Targeting is important when creating content to make sure that your hard work isn’t being wasted. When you know your content is reaching the right people, you know you’re being appreciated. Follow these tips to make sure your content is reaching the right people, and you’ll see better returns on your content creation.