What Your Audience Expects from YOU in 2017

Whenever a New Year starts, it brings about new changes within someone’s life, however, it does impact businesses as well in a dramatic way. Over the course of 5 years, we’ve seen new trends established online that are changing the way we interact with people. For example, social media platforms overall increased in size, content marketing has taken more shape, we write for the world, not just ourselves, etc. Another huge change is our audience has shifted, becoming pickier of the content we publish. It’s not as simple as publishing content, hoping it will go viral. With so many spammers destroying the user experience, we, as reputable bloggers, need to understand our audience and provide them with the best experience. If we fail to do this, we’ll lose what is most important to us, which is the brand we’ve built.

Let’s look at some important elements to engage your audience in 2017. These are simple, but effective techniques that you should implement into your strategy. Some are content related and some are overall factors that effect the user experience.

A view of the audience from the stage at the IST Closing Ceremony. Photo: Malin Huusmann / Scouterna

An Awesome Experience

The first element that separates different websites and the overall user experience is the “WOW” factor. In other words, it’s the experience the visitor has when they arrive on your website. You have very little time to attract the visitor and keep them engaged on your website. Remember, there is NO shortage of competition and relevant information so visitors can easily head to another website if they don’t find what they’re looking for. The total “experience” comes down to web design, headline, amount of clutter, and other relevant information. If you can provide a solid funnel for each visitor to feel comfortable when they arrive on your website, it’s a higher chance they’ll engage with your content and create a conversion. The next time you visit your website, look over these elements…

  • The navigation
  • Colors
  • Content formatting
  • Headline
  • Clutter

Engaging Content

You’ve probably heard this before, but going into 2017, you have to put a twist on the way people engage with your content. People arriving on your website have all sorts of experience with some of them NOT knowing what to do. In 2017, “Engagement = Actionable” and it’s important you provide them with a clear cut plan to follow. It’s no longer just good enough to write words, hoping they’ll understand what you’ve written. You have to show them “what’s next” after your content so newbies know what they have to do to achieve the same results.

Find Content Online

Going into 2017, your audience expects to easily find the content you’ve written and published on your blog. For example, by now, you know where relevant people are hanging out within your niche. You know, for example, if niche relevant people like Twitter.com, forums, Scoop.It, or Facebook.com. Some channels work better for others and this all comes down to niche. If you are in a niche where infographics is the best way to get your point across, then using Pinterest.com will be your best option as its interface is perfect for images.

Here’s what I suggest…

By now, you should have a clear cut idea of the best distribution channels for your content. Instead of focusing on low engaging networks, you’re better off generating a buzz on networks with the highest audience for your niche. It’s truly the fastest way to generate engagement and build your brand. For example, you are better off putting 100% effort into a network that provides 10,000 visitors per month compared to one providing 500. However,

If you’re new to blogging, you should run some trial and error tests to find the right network for you.

You should define the right distribution channel by looking for the following…

  • You know you can find your audience on that network and they are ready to follow you.
  • You are familiar with the network and can fit it into your daily schedule. The more comfortable you are on the network, the faster you can get content posted and in front of the right people.
  • You love the overall experience it provides. When you love doing something, you’ll put 100% effort into getting things done the right way.

Compelling Content

The expansion of social media has been important for blog growth. It’s very easy to build brand awareness by posting compelling content. This means publishing content that people find attractive, funny, insightful, etc. It’s been proven that people are more likely to share this type of content because it adds value to them on social profiles. There are several people who are doing very well by simply gathering compelling content and posting it under their profile.

The important thing is, compelling content is NOT only important to grow your status, but your audiences as well. The more powerful content they share helps them build their own social following. This is why content that is insightful and provides substance gets “retweeted” several times by relevant people. They know the power of compelling content and are more likely to share it when it adds value to you and them.

Wrapping It Up…

Blogging is tricky and very competitive. You’re in an industry where brand and audience matter so use these strategies to keep them engaged. The more actionable, shareable, and powerful your content, the greater loyalty from your audience, however, you have to find what works so take some time to track your progress. In the end, engaging your audience should be your main concern.

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