Keeping your audience in mind when creating content helps ensure that they can truly connect with your message.
Audiences of different ages – who understandably have varied outlooks, experiences, and interests – will respond differently to a given piece of content. Staying attuned to nuances in your audience’s experiences and outlooks will help you create on-point content that appeals to readers from all generations. The need to tailor your content to a broader audience is even greater when you’re marketing towards additional segments. When creating content, think first about the primary audience you’re hoping to target with a particular post, but also consider how you can use alternative phrasing or add additional information so that people outside that group may also find value in the content.
Include Plenty of Visuals
The best way to craft posts for audiences of all ages is to include plenty of visuals. Whether it’s because their eyes tire easily or they are used to short bursts of information, Internet readers of all ages have a hard time with sites that are comprised mainly of blocks of text. However, if you do plan to integrate visuals into your piece, ensure that they relate to your content, otherwise they may just get ignored or actually detract from your written content.
Use an image at the front of your content to attract your reader’s attention. You also may want to include images between sections of text to help the content flow better.
When choosing images, be careful! Don’t choose images that are offensive – this is a surefire way to turn your audience off. In addition, don’t choose images that contain niche or ultra specific pop-culture references unless they are directly relevant to your topic. Though you may have seen every “Game of Thrones” episode three times over, there’s a good chance that not everyone in your audience will pick up your reference to the unfathomably shocking twist was dropped in viewers’ laps in the Red Wedding episode (case in point).
See also: How to Use Quality Images in Blog Posts
Be Selective When Using Memes
You might be tempted to use memes to provide humor, break up text, or add interest to a piece, but be cautious: memes may not appeal to all readers.
That said, certain memes may be able to address a broader audience. As with other visuals, avoid niche memes (e.g., Futurama character memes) in favor of generic memes such as cat and dog memes. By employing the latter, you guarantee that more readers will find your content valuable.
The last point to consider when utilizing memes is the desired tone of your piece. Whether writing as a freelancer or in a salaried position, you will likely have guidelines that ask for the piece to be written with a specific tone – such as informal, technical, or witty. While memes can entice many audiences (especially younger readers), you should be mindful of whether or not wide usage of memes makes sense given the overall attitude of your piece. For instance, if you’re writing in a technical, informative tone (e.g., for a piece on how to purchase a healthcare plan), it would probably be inappropriate to inject a heavy array of cat and dog memes into your piece.
Format your Text
Styling the text of your post can also help you engage audience members of all ages. The best example of this is combining headers, spacing, and lists to break up your text, making it easier for read online. When reading on the web, people have markedly shorter attention spans and thus “scan” content. Using spaced out content allows readers to quickly grasp the main points of your piece.
For each piece you write, consider your audience’s preferences and needs, and then work to make your piece clearer, leaner, and more accessible to everyone.
See also: 5 Design Concepts Writers Must Learn
How do you tailor content to audiences of different ages? Share your strategies in the comments!
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