It's You Who Shapes The Content - You Decide The Story
You will have heard the phrase "don't judge a book by it's cover", if you take it literally, it means that it'd whats inside that counts. ACTION: You see the man in the featured photograph (above), who do you think he is, what is his job and what is his history - make a quick note.
But think about it a little more and you may start to understand that this phrase could be less about the thing you are "judging" or viewing and more about your own preconceived ideas which are clouding your "judgement".
This is important for any marketer to understand, and by marketer I am not just meaning SEO's and Digital Marketers but anyone involved in selling. From the lovely folk on your supermarket shop floor (they sell lots of things to lots of people they talk to), to the wedding photographer (who not only sells his/her services but also has to sell your memories for generations to come - in your wedding album) to the website affiliate marketer (who has a very niche target audience). All of these great marketers sell to you and me, but they do it differently based on their audience (or at least what they perceive as their audience) and within that audience they "niche down" and may focus on a tiny segment of that audience - this is where it gets interesting.
Your perception of your audience, is where things let you down. They let us all down, we are all guilty of it.
ACTION: Spend a moment looking at the photos below, do they change any of your ideas about who this man is?
I suspect that these pictures alone would have given you different ideas of who this man was, together they probably mixed up your ideas ... and this is the point of the exercise.
What you see in front of you is not what you think it is, there is so much to everything in life and work that just because you think something doesn't mean you are right.
Just because you think your target market is Mr X from Manchester - he's 38, has brown hair and blue eyes, he works as a real estate agent and is getting Married to Mrs Y from Liverpool, shes blonde, 29 years old and works in a beauty salon.
From that description and the way it's phrased you've probably got a few ideas about what to expect from this couple. But what if I mentioned that she has a PhD in Computer Science but has decided she no longer enjoys that work - I bet that changes your ideas entirely about her.
The guy above and his photos are from THE LAB : DECOY. The Lab is a set of films created by Canon, DECOY tells a different story to 6 photographers about the same man, just a one sentence story. It's their job to simply take a photo of this man, they have 10 minutes. Take a look at the video below.
The reason it's important for anyone marketing any product or service to learn about the above is that it is "WE" who shapes the content, it is "US" who decides who we are talking to.
The lesson, if it's not clear, is that just because you have an idea of who you are writing content for, doesn't mean you are right.
By researching multiple persons in your niche, by talking to people in your niche audience, and by not thinking "everyone" in your niche market is the same you can achieve more. Everyone is Different.
Next time you are writing a blog post or a description of your service, think again about who you audience really is.