The connection is the thing – in life as well as business. To make a strong one, whether with the media or potential customers, you need to not only create quality content, but also make sure it resonates. In short, know your audience.
That rule of engagement applies to all areas of communications, from the greenest marketing student to the most seasoned PR executive. In all content efforts, knowing who your company is talking to is essential. It must be established from the get-go. This is critically important when writing for the media versus customers.
Because the media is a very particular – and often tough – audience, your goal is to create a clear, concise, tailored message. Always on deadline, editors are moving fast with lots of people vying for their time, so your pitch needs to be just right to hit the moving target. Get into that elevator pitch mindset — you have 15 to 30 seconds before the editor moves on. How can you hook them?
First off, know that media view content from a ‘news’ perspective so it should always be timely. You might get everything right in your pitch, but if the angle isn’t fresh and topical then it will fail or just not be a priority to the journalist. And doing your research ahead of time cannot be drilled down any more than in this instance. Definitely don’t be the person who pitches a story that the publication just ran last month. Not only will you not get a response, but you will lose all credibility with that journalist.
When writing for media, use the inverted pyramid approach: the most newsworthy info — the who, what, when, where and how of the story idea — comes first, followed by the important supporting details and lastly the background and other general info.
Be sure to remove all the unnecessary verbiage in your message and get right to the point. You don’t want to ever bury the lead. As Shakespeare wrote, brevity is the soul of wit.
Your Target Audience
When you are developing content for your target audience, you must have their needs and interests in mind. Maybe its sports, health, parenting or technology. Maximize engagement and relatability in the topic and the way you convey it, using anything that will resonate with them and spur them on to purchase your product or service.
For example, a non-salesy testimonial video about how a CBD product helped a mother sleep better after having a baby can really resonate with tired moms scrolling through their social feed. If parents/moms are your target audience, you nailed it! Videos, personal and/or funny anecdotes, and compelling content can have a much greater impact than a post documenting various studies on product effectiveness.
Also, the tone of your content for customers shouldn’t be too formal, with obvious exceptions such as an earnings call script meant for investors or a high-level B2B target audience (e.g., bank executives).
“Know your audience” and “give them what they want” each will yield results you want. The numbers don’t lie. To maximize your engagement numbers, make sure your content fits the target.
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