Saturday, December 22, 2007

Blog Writing Tips - 2 - Acknowledge Your Target Market

By Christo Fox

When you are writing a blog it is important to understand who your target market is and to acknowledge them whenever you can. Hollywood producers have been doing this forever! Blog writing is no different. You are typically writing a blog to get fans. Fans are people who read every single post you write and usually leave a comment. It doesn't matter if the fan is being positive or negative, as long as you have people reading your blog and commenting, they can be considered as fans. Some blogs are literally held together by these unrelenting fans who stick with the blog writer until the very end. Think of your fans as your most loyal customers and treat them as such.

If you don't know who your target market is, then you really should not be writing blogs. If you have a rough idea about who your target market is, but can't narrow it down, then try a variety of references and see which one the market responds to. For example, if I am writing a blog about a violent video game there is a high chance the readers will have an interest in violent movies. I might use this piece of information to include a reference to an upcoming Tarantino movie. This does 4 things. It lets the readers know I am just like them, that I understand them, that I am up-to-date on current events and it will also get my blog into search results when the movie comes out. The latter is another little tip that I'll chuck in as a bonus for you loyal article readers.

Any kind of blog can have references that their target market will respond to. Someone who blogs about new ways to cook chicken might include a reference to a related episode of Oprah. This is where creativity comes into play. These "references" could even make your blog stand out and reach a wider audience. Writing a blog about a boring book review might put readers to sleep, but if you throw a reference to the possibility of that book being turned into a movie starring Tom Hanks, then you instantly have some great reading material on your hands. The references you include in your blog can be funny, informative or just plain silly. The type of reference you include will typically be on par with your style of blog voice (see Blog Writing Tips 1).

Finally, when you make a reference, it's a good idea to add a hyperlink (if you got the information online). The link shows that you are not just making stuff up, as well as crediting the original sources, which is quite possibly the most important rule of the blogworld.

In conclusion...

- Identify fans of your blog. Whether they be positive or negative. Treat them as loyal customers.

- Throw in as many relevant references to culture, news or current events as possible to keep the target market interested. If you can't work out what references to use then try different ones and see which one the readers respond to the most. Make sure these references are in line with your blog voice style. i.e. A funny blog writer will include funny references that are often silly and trivial.

- If you got the reference from an online source, please add a hyperlink and properly credit your source. The referenced website will see your link and hopefully network with your blog.

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