Is Your Message Being Heard?
You’ve no doubt heard the old adage that “nothing multiplied is still nothing”. It’s the same when it comes to sharing your message: Nothing amplified is still nothing. If your message is not clear it will not resonate with your audience and nothing you do to amplify it will get you the results you want.
When you are blogging to share your message, it’s imperative that you be clear with what you are trying to say. Unless you are doing a lot of video blogging, then your audience is going to be relying strictly on your words to understand what you are saying and how you can serve them. Since there are no visual cues in written posts, your words and the energy behind them has to be clear.
Simply put, you are the messenger and you must deliver your message in a way that the recipient will understand it. If you’re not clear on what the message is, then for your audience it will be like receiving a message in another language without subtitles.
Here are a few ideas on how to do just that….
Know Your Audience
How well do you know your audience? If you consider yourself a prime example of the people you want to serve, chances are you don’t know them as well as you think you do.
Make sure you do your research and find out, at the very least:
- What they know
- What they want to know
- What they need to know
- Why they need to know it
- How they want it delivered
Here’s a good example of that. A couple of years ago I had an idea for doing a WordPress course, and one of the first things I wanted to talk about was installing WordPress. It made sense to me that installation was the place to start.
However, when I started asking people what they wanted, the first thing they said was that even before they started thinking about WordPress they needed to not be intimidated by the back-end of their hosting accounts. I would never have thought about including that had I not asked what people wanted to learn.
I ended up not doing the course, but the lesson is one I have never forgotten.
Listen when they tell you what they want.
There’s no point in asking the questions if you’re not going to listen to the answers. People might be reluctant to let you know what they want, so you can ask directly through polls and questions, or you can participate in conversations where you… wait for it… get to know your audience. Things like Facebook groups, forums, and your competition’s blogs will give you a good insight into the questions and issues your audience is concerned with.
If you have your own Facebook group or forum, talk to your members. Ask them what they need. After all, they are following you for a reason and if you don’t meet their needs they will not stick around.
Taking the time to get to know your people makes it much easier to craft your message in a way that they will understand, and they will know that you are paying attention to their needs as well.
Which brings me to the next point…
Make sure your audience also knows what you need from them.
There’s nothing more frustrating when sharing your message than having it misunderstood or worse, completely ignored. Yet this is what will happen if you’re not clear on what you want your audience to do.
Be confident in yourself and your products when you’re asking for the action too. There’s nothing worse than the wishy-washy call to action that goes something like this: “Sorry to bother you but I’ve got this thing over here that I’d really like you to sign up for, and I think it’s pretty good and I think it’s what you might want, but it’s up to you. If you really want it, you can sign up for it over here but if you don’t then that’s okay too.”
Like really. How many signups is something like that going to get you?
If you want them to subscribe to your list, tell them to subscribe.
If you want them to buy something, tell them what it is and why they should buy it.
If you want them to join your group, be clear and confident on that too.
Besides knowing how to interact with your audience, you also need to know how to write for them. The difference between successfully serving and being ignored can be boiled down to something as simple as how you write.
Let’s talk about a few things you can do to make sure your writing is clear enough for your readers to understand and take action on.
Write in your own voice
Everyone has their own unique voice when they speak, and it’s the same with writing. When you write a blog post make sure you are using your voice. People will get to know your style, and if it resonates with them they will hear your message and you will have fans for life.
Your voice is one of the single most important pieces of your blog, so always be yourself and let your audience get to know you through your words and your writing style.
Make sure your audience understands your language
Take the time to explain things, especially any technical terms you may use. There’s nothing worse when you’re trying to learn something new and having the language go right over your head.
You are the expert here, so it’s up to you to make sure your audience understands the language you are using. If you use a lot of specialized terms, have a Glossary page on your site with common definitions.
How you write will also have an impact on how well your message is received and understood.
Be honest and transparent in your writing
If you’re writing content to sell things it’s tempting to slant the post in such a way as to push your message. My background is in history and we would call this bias. In advertising it’s called “puffery” and is where the term “puff” piece or “fluff” piece comes from. (Wikipedia).
You will want to be honest and transparent in your writing. If you have a bias one way or the other, let your audience know what it is and why you think that way. It’s okay to have an opinion, but when you’re selling you want to make sure that you outline pros and cons so that your audience gets an objective assessment.
The last thing you want as a blogger is to get a reputation for doing only puff pieces with no substance to them. That just wastes time, both yours and your readers’.
Just as you want to be honest in your writing, you also want to make sure you have your facts straight. This is especially true if you hire ghostwriters or use PLR as part of your content. That’s not to say anything bad about ghostwriters or PLR providers, but more that you should take responsibility for your content and make sure that what you’ve been given is accurate. You need to edit it to suit your voice anyways, so take the extra minute to make sure what you’re putting your name on is true.
PLR often gets a bad rap, but there are some really wonderful providers out there. As an aside, while I was writing this section I thought about the PLR providers I use. I don’t think it’s any secret that I use a lot of PLR for a lot of different things. I buy from about 10 different people, and I got thinking about them and realized that out of the 10 major PLR providers I buy from regularly, I have met 6 of them in person.
The last point I want to make, at least for now, is this…
Keep your message consistent, and repeat it often.
You know yourself how much information you get bombarded with on a daily basis. Your audience is no different. Don’t just share your message once and expect them to get it, and jump right on whatever it is you’re sharing.
You’ll need to tell them more than once, and in a variety of ways. Written posts, audio posts, video, infographics, social media updates all play an important part in making sure your message gets heard.
All good blog posts, no matter what the subject matter, follow some basic formula. One of the most popular ones is this:
- “Tell them what you’re going to tell them” — that’s the introduction
- “Tell them” – your points, and the main body of your post
- “Tell them what you just told them” – the conclusion
- “Tell them what to do next” – your call to action.
If you can master that formula, through using your own unique voice along with honest, transparent language that your audience understands, you should have no problem sharing your message and being heard.
What’s your favorite way of sharing your message? Come on over to the Facebook Group and share with us!