Lisa Kimrey reports:
"[Any time] we write, we should consider our audience...Think about popular lifestyle, current events, pop culture or opinion websites...Look for the posts that were shared the highest number of times on social media...The more topics, the easier it is to apply your niche to the audience. It is also possible to see some ‘edgy’ content or titles. Take note of any trends...First, [notice whether] the [article's] comments are supportive of the topic. Or maybe they have a negative tone? Look for what is being considered to be positive topics by the audience. Conflict can be scary for a new writer so if that bothers you (it bothered me), pay attention to the topics that promote positive feedback. The response will have a greater shot at being positive if you know what makes your audience happy (versus upset)...Typically, the website will have submission guidelines, but look at the flow of the top shared articles. Note any commonalities...Are they written as letters, personal essays, biographies, etc.?...As mentioned above, read through all of the comments. Be absolutely sure to read the replies and comments under the comments. The most valuable treasures are in this section right here...I found the audience’s language jargon, age ranges, life experiences, passions and beliefs in the responses to comments. People were justifying their positions, all the while teaching me to listen to and learn their ‘voice.’...To write in a different voice, use whatever phrases and jargon that you see the audience using in your article. Put those words into your subject line to the editor. Put them in the title of your article...[T]he way I started thinking differently about how I could gain a new or different perspective on my niche was by imagining my niche topic in the center of a bull’s-eye target. I then worked from the very center to the last ring on the outside. To move outward, I looked at my niche topic using the different voices or perspectives that learned about the audience from the comments. Specifically, I looked through the eyes of people in other roles, genders, ages or job titles. Then I looked through the eyes of people who had different passions, values or beliefs. Other ideas formed as I moved away from my original idea to the outside ring of the bull’s-eye target. You will be surprised at what you come up with if you spend a few minutes doing this! Finally, I had to start writing the article outline with my best. I started with an article outline that allowed me to write my best content for my typical audience, and then edited my best work into the format, architecture, jargon or phrases for the intended audience. I did all of the above on that first article. To be truly transparent, my article’s title was so edgy to me that I was embarrassed to post my published article on my social media site. That is, until the post started to get shared over and over again. And something funny happened. The comments on my article were about the edgy title and how the title made the audience want to read my article! Some of the readers blamed the website for changing my title to increase their ratings. No doubt, it can be intimidating to write outside of your niche, but I have found that taking the risk and doing a little drilling can have a big payoff. If you adjust your niche for a different audience, a different voice and a different perspective you can find hidden jewels in different writing sources and yet still stay safely within your comfort zone."
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