The key to audience engagement is an effective content strategy. But there are easy ways to sabotage your strategy before you begin.

User expectations are changing with the times. They no longer have the patience for hard sales or cheap marketing gimmicks. Your audience now craves an authentic, relatable experience, and that’s hard to put a price on. Luckily for you, your organization can cultivate that experience with a minimal financial investment with an engaging content strategy.

Want support with writing high impact content? We’d love to help you with that.


Not Considering Your Audience

So you’ve got a mission, and you’re excited to share it with the world. But if you can’t match that mission to what your audience needs, you’ll never connect with them. The biggest mistake you can make is not putting your audience at the forefront of your content strategy. To avoid this blunder and strengthen your content strategy, you can start by making user personas.

Your audience is determined by your organization, but your content should be determined by your audience. Determine who your audience really is, and then find out how to connect with them via engaging content.

Define who will read it

When making a user persona, the first thing you need to do is consider the “who” and “where” of your audience. Start with basic demographics:

  • Are your readers male, female, other, both?
  • How old is your target audience?
  • What’s their income level?
  • Where do they live?

Define their goals

Next, you’ll need to consider what’s important to your audience. This would be the “why” and “how.” If they could wake up in the morning and have one problem solved, what would it be? Consider what may drive them to seek out your organization. What do they need, and how can you help them?

You’ll also want to understand what your audience doesn’t want – these will be their pain points and any problems they deal with. From here, you can work on possible solutions.

Not Considering Your Intended Impact

Not having a content strategy goal in mind will make your articles feel aimless and haphazard. Before you start writing, establish the purpose of your piece. Are you sharing new information? Calling for help? Do you want to thank someone for a recent donation? From there, try planning out the structure of your piece. Everyone plans differently, but it’s easier to make an article or video more focused on the end goal if you keep it in mind from the beginning.

Non-Descriptive CTA Texts

CTA stands for “call to action.” It’s a small piece of text placed typically at the end of your articles that entices people to click through and learn more about your organization. In longer articles, you’ll sometimes see these blurbs dispersed throughout. This blurb serves as the final tool in your content strategy to entice readers to come to you for more.

But a simple “click here to learn more” isn’t going to spark a reader’s curiosity or motivate them to act. Your readers are being marketed to all day long, and they’re tired of it. Being vague isn’t the key to their heart. At the same time, you don’t want your CTA buried under a mountain of fluff. Keeping it short, sweet, and to the point is the key to a killer call to action.

Further reading and resources:

  1. How to Write Engaging Content for the Web
  2. How to Create an Effective People-First Content Strategy
  3. Hook, Line, and Sinker: 7 Tips for a Killer Call-to-Action