Creating relevant and compelling content isn't as simple as randomly choosing a topic. There are very specific steps to take to successfully create content that reaches your target audience. I happened to learn these through experience. I like to call it:
The Week We Almost Quit College
Establishing a goal with little-to-no direction
I remember in one of my media theory classes in college we had a writing assignment from our professor that had most of our class ready to quit college by the end. She told us to take a theory we had learned and find a piece of media that we could apply it to. Her instructions were very open-ended and left a lot of room for interpretation (and misinterpretation), but she had one very clear requirement. It had to impress her. She had to find it interesting and thought-provoking.
With an audience, this is always one of your top goals. Impress them. Get them thinking. This helps determine direction.
Keep calm and strategize
While some panicked about the assignment, others started strategizing. We couldn't all use the same media. We had to individualize our selections. We all knew she had certain preferences, things she found funny, and things she found interesting. We listed everything we knew about her.
There wasn't much.
With the information we had, though, we were able to establish a direction we could go. One thing was clear by the end of our strategizing sessions- She liked quirky humor. With that in mind, we all began searching for options within that category.
If you don't know your audience, take what you do know about them and use that knowledge to further define the direction of your content.
Take It For a Test Drive
We were given one rough draft to turn in. She would give us a preliminary grade based on that rough draft, but wouldn't tell us what was wrong with it if we didn't do well. That being said, we had to figure it out for ourselves. Based on our preliminary grades, we learned that she liked media involving comics and TV shows. She hated reading things and pictures by themselves just weren't enough. Through trial and error, we were able to establish what worked with her and what didn't.
You win some and you lose some. Take risks and see what your audience responds to. Don't leave your content in a good place; bring it to a GREAT place. "It works" is never good enough.
Do you deserve an "A"?
When the assignment was finished, she pulled us each aside and asked us what grade we thought we deserved. When she pulled me aside, she said, "Do you think you deserve an A?"
I responded with, "No."
"And why is that?" She asked.
"Because there is always room for improvement."
When it comes to content, there is always room for improvement. There is always a different audience to appeal to, a different point that could have been made, a varied approach that could have been taken. Your content should always be improving and evolving. To find out how we at Tribute Media can take your content to the next level, contact us.