In today’s world, content is a king.
This is why businesses across the globe try to promote their goods and services through content marketing. Millions of websites are struggling to get the attention of prospective customers, but not all become successful in this, due to the difficulty of the process.
You may also ask how to determine which content they prefer. This and more questions go through the mind of a business owner who is trying to reach their targeted audience through content creation.
To find the solution, let’s jump into the best ways to discover what your audience wants.
How to Identify the Content Your Audience Is Looking for
About 91% of users prefer visual content to text, according to a study conducted by Forbes. A related study by Cisco led to a projection that 82 percent of all internet traffic will be generated from videos by 2022. So, you need to focus a significant portion of your content marketing campaign on visual aids like pictures, infographics, videos, and the like.
These are eight unique ways to get more user-focused information that leads to more engagement and conversions.
1. Build a Buyer’s Profile
A buyer’s profile is one you create to focus strictly on the needs of your customers. It can represent groups of people who share the same demographics, profession, interests, etc.
- Create Profiles
This addresses who exactly your customer base is, what challenges they encounter, and why they choose the content they do, among other factors. You can create as many buyer profiles as you need, depending on your audience.
- Create Targeted Content
When you’ve understood your audience insights, the next thing to do is to use a buyer’s profile or marketing personas. You will be able to create the best content for a particular group that shares the same interests (let’s say, marketers).
2. Build a Relationship Through Conversation
You can talk to your audience and build a relationship with them. This will increase their loyalty toward your business, especially when their needs are addressed. This can be easily done by:
- Use the Comment Section
Nothing beats having a solid relationship with your customers, but how do you build this relationship? You can use the comments box on your blog or social media posts to talk with them regularly.
- Pay Attention to Details
As you connect more with them, you start to learn more about what they want/need and how your content can help them. Make sure that not all your conversations are promotional if you don’t want to irritate your audience.
3. Don’t Be Quiet: Talk to Your Audience
Asking your audience questions directly helps you to build a solid relationship with them, as it lets them know that their opinions matter. How do you ask your audience what content interests them? Here are some effective ways:
- Never Overlook Your Comments Section
The comment section, either on your social media content or your blog posts, will help you get firsthand information on praises, complaints, and suggestions from your audience. Now, don’t just read; make sure you respond to them, thanking them for praises and suggestions and telling them you’ll work on complaints.
You can also create a column specific to asking for suggestions on what they think you should do to improve in certain areas. No matter how harsh these suggestions are, respond with a thank-you and some polite words.
- Send Them Emails
Using email programs is a must if you want to find out exactly what interests your audience directly from them. You can send emails asking your subscribers to fill in a quick questionnaire to update their content preferences.
Don’t worry; you don’t need to collect email addresses or send these emails individually. There are email clients, such as Mailbird, that can help you automate the process and save your time. Mailbird’s tools will help you manage all your emails from different accounts through a single interface.
- Make Use of All Your Social Media Tools
Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms all have options to create polls, among other tools. With polls, you can ask your audience to vote for certain content they think should be on your platform.
Additionally, try asking open-ended questions that come with boxes for answers. These boxes allow your audience to freely express themselves, rather than being limited to yes or no responses.
4. Consider Using Analytics Tools
If you want more precise and data-based insights on who your target audience is and what interests them, then you need to use analytics tools.
- Take Advantage of Facebook Insights
Every business page on Facebook automatically comes with Facebook Insights, a free and valuable analytic tool. It provides you with the necessary information on your audience, including age, sex, gender, nationality, and most importantly, the type of content they respond to the most.
Furthermore, this tool shows you how many people saw and engaged with your posts. Using the information from Facebook Insights, you can subsequently work to deliver exactly what your audience wants.
- Use Instagram Insights
Similar to Facebook pages, Instagram business accounts come with insights that will reveal more about your audience. This shows you the level of engagement and reach that individual posts about your products and services have.
You will find the analytics button on every post you make on your IG business account. Use it to make more informed decisions about content creation.
- Track Your Activity on Twitter
With the Twitter activity analytics tool available for business accounts, you can get meaningful insights. This particular tool is valuable because it provides useful information on your target audience.
Using the activity tracker, you will know how your audience responds to your business tweets. This will help you decide what to improve, what to avoid, and what to double down on.
- Try Google Analytics
Google Analytics (GA) is a service for webmasters and optimizers that allows you to analyze users’ demographics, geography, and behavior on a website. The best part is that Google Analytics is the most powerful and versatile web analytics tool available at the moment. It’s associated with many Google services, from which you can receive almost any data about site visitors, except for personal data. Also, it’s completely free. GA offers you a huge range of information, including the following:
- Attendance data
- Number of pages viewed by users: This characteristic shows how many pages they visited.
- Number of sessions: A session is a series of web portal views by one user. If, after a certain time, a user no longer visits the site, their session is considered ended.
- Site audience: The site audience is the number of visitors who viewed a web resource for a certain time.
- Number of new visitors: This is the number of users who visited the site for the first time.
- Site audience characteristics
- Geographic distribution of the audience: The IP address of the computer from which a user opened the browser and visited a website is geo-referenced, so for each visitor, you can find out the geographic location (excluding distributed corporate networks).
- Audience activity: This parameter shows the number of pages visited by a user. From this, you can calculate the average visitor’s interest in the current web resource.
- The popularity of a website’s pages and sections
- Popular pages: Google Analytics separately calculates the number of visitors and the number of views for each page and lets you know which of them are the most visited.
- Popular page groups: This means that the same metrics are for pages in the same subdirectory (for example, posts from the same category).
5. Keep Your Eyes on Your Most Relevant Competitors
No matter how perfect you think your content strategies are, there may always be someone else with a more effective approach. So, it’s always a good idea to monitor your competitors. You can learn from their accomplishments and mistakes. The best ways to monitor them are:
- Increase Activity in Facebook Groups
In Facebook groups, there are many different posts and information about how the audience responds to these posts. Paying attention to these groups will give you deeper insights into what kind of content you should create for your audience for maximum engagement.
- Follow Competitors’ Accounts on Social Media
Hit that follow button and go through the posts of your competitors. You can follow your competitors with a different account, rather than your business one.
Watch with keenness to see how they engage their commenters and what results they get from their engagement style. This will help you learn the most efficient ways to engage your audience.
- Attend Topical Conferences and Pay Attention to Discussions
At topical conferences, there are discussions on trending topics (that show where people’s interests lie). At these conferences, you will learn different approaches to content marketing. Furthermore, you will learn about more technology tools and how you can use them for your content.
In addition to this, do a backlink analysis on the sites of your competitors. This will show you how competitors use backlinks for SEO. As you already know, you will need backlinks to increase your online authority.
6. Utilize Social Media Analytics Tools
These tools help you analyze your social media in detail. They show you which topics are trending and what people are saying about your business (which you most definitely should hear). This way, you can know the right content for your audience to see on your platform. Some are listed below:
The Buzzsumo platform helps you discover new keywords, what customers are asking, the best content, and most importantly, what content is relevant to your brand.
Furthermore, if you’re lacking content creation ideas, this platform can help you with some. In addition, it will show you which content has the most shares on social media.
- What’s Trending
If you want all-around news from social media, this tool might be an ideal option. Whatstrending.com shows different categories of news on social media and what people are saying about it. Join the buzz to draw traffic to your page.
- Google Trends
Using Google Trends is a good idea if you want your content to rank in top searches on Google. This tool shows you the most popular searches in different countries. You can create content based on the keywords and trending topics you find.
- Sprout Social
This is a tool that both big and small businesses can use; it is a social media listening tool that helps you see how your content is doing. The reason it is called a “listening tool” is that you will receive alerts to see the conversations about your brand or company. This allows you to attend to complaints before they turn into something worse.
7. Test Different Content Types
If you don’t know what topics or what types of content to choose, then you should try the next steps:
- Set Content Goals
It is not enough to want your content to perform well; what exactly are you aiming for? Do you have content goals? If not, then you should set your goals based on the following: how many followers/subscribers do you want to get per month? What is the average number of comments you expect per post? How many shares do you expect per post? What are your website traffic goals for the month? Make sure these goals are realistic.
Some other things you can include are: how many mentions do you want under your company’s official hashtags? What changes will be present after you post different content? How much engagement do you want monthly?
- Track Your Progress
With your content goals in place, the next thing to do is watch for results after posting new content. Is there a noticeable growth or a decrease in engagement? Did your company hashtags see an increase in mentions? How many returning visitors do you have on your blog page? Is your company’s follower base growing, stagnant, or reducing?
These results from your content marketing statistics will help guide you as you make plans for your next set of content.
- Review Your Previous Content
How do you review the content you already have? You can do this by testing previously existing content: make a comparison between your posts with excellent and poor performance.
Also, ask yourself these questions as you review: Are your posts readable? Do some words need to be simplified for easier understanding? Do the posts need images or videos to give customers visual representations of what they have read?
8. Use Old Content for New Purposes
If you’ve ever paid attention to TikTok and YouTube influencers, you’ll notice that they recreate the same popular content several times. As a business owner, you can use this trick to your advantage by following these tips:
- Reuse Content with Excellent Performance on Different Platforms
If a previous piece of content had a high-performance rate, you can use this for your brand’s other platforms. For example, if you had a ten-minute YouTube video that had close to 100k views in one week, you can make GIFs, short clips, or images out of that video. Subsequently, you can post those GIFs or images on your other social media platforms, like Instagram and Facebook, where people prefer shorter clips.
If your blog post of over 1000 words performed well, you can take a 50-word catchy snippet of it and post it with an image on social media. You can add a link to the original post as well. This way, you can get engagement on other platforms and still link people back to the original content for more details.
- Rewrite Content with Bad Performance
You can redo any content that isn’t performing well to make it better by increasing user engagement. Perhaps your post titles are not appealing enough? Maybe you posted the right content on the wrong platform? Perhaps your content is difficult to read and there are not relevant images to interpret the written text? Find out what went wrong and fix it.
For example, if you posted a cooking video on LinkedIn, you may not get enough engagement because of how that platform is tailored to corporate needs. However, if you posted the same cooking content on YouTube, you may get better engagement.
As you already understood, in order to find out what your audience wants, you need to build a profile of your user, build relationships with them, and conduct active communication. Don’t forget to listen to them and ask what they want.
It is also important to use analytical tools for social networks and Google Analytics for websites. Experiment with content creation and watch your competitors so you don’t miss any important details.
1) How do you discover what your audience craves?
- Build a Buyer’s Profile
- Build a Relationship Through Conversation
- Don’t Be Quiet: Talk to Your Audience
- Consider Using Analytics Tools
- Keep Your Eyes on Your Most Relevant Competitors
- Utilize Social Media Analytics Tools
- Test Different Content Types
- Use Old Content for New Purposes
2) What are some examples of social media analytics tools?
- What’s Trending
- Google Trends
- Sprout Social
Roman Shvydun writes informative articles mainly about everything related to e-mail. His articles have become extremely popular in such areas as Marketing, Business, Productivity, Workplace culture, etc. His articles focus on balancing informative with SEO needs–but never at the expense of providing an entertaining read. See a few more examples of Roman’s articles by visiting the Mailbird blog.