“If you build it, they will come.” That line may have worked for Kevin Costner’s character in Field of Dreams, but such advice may prove disastrous for you if you’re serious about starting a successful blog to stand the test of time.
My Own Blog Journey
In 1995 I founded one of the very first hair and beauty sites on the Web. It eventually transitioned to HairBoutique.com, which is still alive and well as we approach 2016.
Hairboutique.com intially consisted of articles, product reviews, advice columns and forums. In 2002 I created my first blog, which currently contains over 5,000 active topics.
One of the most challenging aspects of running HairBoutique.com and the HB Blog has been clearly understanding the target audience.
Not only has it been an ongoing task, our audience is constantly changing due to a variety of factors.
Why Are You Writing A Blog?
If you’re writing a blog just to have fun, exercise your writing muscles, or as a creative outlet, it probably doesn’t matter if you know who to write for.
However, if you’re trying to build traffic to a blog, or sell products or services, successfully defining your target blog audience will be the difference between success and failure.
Defining Your Target Audience Is The Cornerstoe Of Any Marketing Campaign
Without a well-defined target audience the most fascinating topics or well written content will be completely wasted.
Defining your target audience is the cornerstone of any marketing campaign you develop or launch.
Steps To Define Your Target Audience
How do you definine your target audience? Ask yourself the following four key questions:
1. Who is your target blog reader? Are they male, or female, or both? What is their age range, marital status, educational background, careers and likely political beliefs? Achieving a crystal clear definition of the demographics of your target audience will go a very long way towards helping you to craft custom content to blog about with consistently successful results.
2. What is your target audience’s current pain? In the case of HairBoutique.com the biggest pain for our visitors is problem hair. There are many subcategories of problem hair which can be further defined and categorized. This is the case with most target audiences. With some careful analysis you can find very clear niches to exploit.
3. Where is my target audience hanging out on Social Media? Are they on Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram, Pinterest or a combination? Since all of the various Social Media platforms have a different appeal, not all people will hang out on all of the platforms. Some may not hang out on Social Mediak depending upon their age or interests.
Facebook has 1 billion users. As a result, it’s a great resource to start looking for your target blog audience. Facebook fans tend to be willing to read longer content than Twitter fanatics. Historically Twitter fans have been proven to have a much shorter attention span.
4. How can you help your target audience? This is a key question to ask when designing your Call To Actions (CTAs) in your blogs. Do you want your blog visitors to visit your site, purchase recommended products or share your content across all the Social Media platforms? What goals are you trying to accomplish with your blogs?
Attract A Blog Audience Who Stays
If you’re not able to provide helpful information to your audience, you may initially be able to attract them, but they won’t stay or ever return.
One of the questions I always ask myself before writing a new blog is what’s happening in the news related to hair and beauty. Once I find out the latest news I ask myself, who would really care about that? Is there new or interesting information I could share with my blog visitors related to hot news items? Would that information help them solve a problem or ease some pain they are experiencing?
Depending upon the answers, I may or may not have discovered new content to develop.
Summary – How To Define Your Target Blog Audience
One of the biggest challenges in learning how to define your target blog audience is to remember you can’t appeal to all of the people all of the time.
Even if you build it, no matter how cool it is, if you didn’t first define your target audience, no one will show up.
Guest post by
Karen Marie Shelton – CEO/Hairboutique.