How to Grow Your Audience by Narrowing Your Focus

Most businesses have multiple customer segments, so taking the advice to prototype a typical reader becomes a challenge.

The problem is, trying to write content that would satisfy all these groups would only result in half hearted content created for the mass market.

To have premium content, it must be created with a specific audience in mind.

 

Why Narrower is Better

The way to grow is by looking inwards into your audience and growing deeper.

The narrower your focus, the more specific your topic is to someone. If your content marketing is a response to specific problems faced by people in your industry, then you will have a hard time writing to satisfy every segment.

Pick an angle you want to take your topic from and stick to it. That way, it becomes easier to define a segment and completely cover their interests, needs, and problems.

So by narrowing your focus on one specific segment of your audience, you create and design everything with them in mind.

Let us take the unique example of American Express who created the Open Forum to cater to small businesses.

Instead of going after all of their customer type, the opted for a specific subset and have created an integrated content-rich web resource that adequately caters for that segment’s unique needs.

In 2010, Open Forum had over 10 million page views. If they had to get that level of targeted readership from traditional advertising, how much do you suppose that would have cost them?

By leveraging audience specificity and attention to detail, Open Forum has attracted one of the largest following for a small business website.

Something else should strike your interest about them.

Most of their content is tailored on the challenges of running a small business, not in leveraging direct sales of their core products.

Why is that so?

Woman Looking Imaginary Binocular

 

Think Solutions, Not Products

When you are building a blog for your company and your industry is not so exciting, you will bore people by trying to focus on your company and or your products.

A better way would be creating a content rich site that fills a gaping need, which, in the case of American Express, was on the topic of small businesses.

So a lighting company may create a blog focused on decorative lighting and show their audience how to create.

By imposing yourself on the internet as the ‘go-to’ authority on decorative lighting – a segment of your market – you will find that your blog would grow much faster, and the referral business you will get from your blog would extend to all other product ranges you offer.

That makes sense, because the person interested in decorative lighting will most likely be interested in other lightening products.

 

Conclusion

Identifying a subset of your audience and focusing on providing valuable content tailored to their needs is the fastest way to get results from content marketing.

Do not waste time writing feature-rich content around your products.

Create content that provides solutions to the problems of your audience.

Surely, it makes sense that in helping them solve their problems, they would help you solve yours.

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Comments

  1. Deepak Kr. Das says

    You are absolutely correct. Single minded focus is the universal key to unlock the doors of success. All successful people or corporations were focused enough in the beginning. Not putting all your eggs in the same basket, can be an average idea for average people. But if you are going to do the next big thing, it may be the worst advice you can follow. Thanks for sharing such an awesome article.
    Deepak Kr. Das recommend you to read:How To Become Popular on Google+My Profile

  2. says


    Twitter:
    Interesting point Yeremi.

    Although I guess it depends how specific you want to go. You could argue that all MMO or “Marketing” blogs are all very general. As, they all discuss SEO, WordPress, Social Media, Blogging, MMO, Web Design etc etc…

    One famous blogger once wrote “Being the Jack of All Trades is a good thing” – so, whilst you will maybe get a more targeted audience the topics usually go hand in hand so I do not think it is necessarily a bad thing.

    Certainly an interesting post.

    Regards,
    John
    John Banks recommend you to read:SEO Trends: Get Lessons from 2012 and Prepare for 2013My Profile

    • says


      Twitter:
      Hi John,
      Thanks for your insightful comment!

      Indeed, at times it seems if you have seen one MMO blog, you have seen them all. However, considering that most of those blogs struggle to make an entrant, have you considered how considerably easier the entry would have been if the had been more specific?

      I would also love to remind you that the narrowing called for in this post is not just about the content, but also in determining your target audience. The narrower your audience, the easier it is to meet their needs satisfactorily.

      Great to see you here… :)
      Yeremi Akpan recommend you to read:Are you a Blogger or a Programmer? (How to Grow Your Blog by Putting Code in Its Place)My Profile

  3. Clair Trebes says

    Hi Yeremi

    This is a great post, and I absolutely agree with the points you have raised in this post. Chris Farrell himself also teaches in his Internet Marketing training about the importance of a super niche – so by narrowing down your subject matter even further, and from what I can see it certainly does work.

    Myself I’m quite specific – my focus is strictly with the newbie to social media so my posts and updates are designed to help people new to social media and for me it works. I often thought about specialising even further but for now I am happy with my direction.

    Great post
    Clair
    Clair Trebes recommend you to read:Social Media SyndicatesMy Profile

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