Audience work is sometimes an afterthought in a content program. But it should always remain at the core of your activities.
Producing content is the fun part of a content program (isn’t it?) and it should remain that way. That is the part where you create actual value, you deliver what your audience will watch, or read, or listen to.
But how often does your team actually WORK on the audience.
That means listening to them, finding out what they want and need, tailoring social media assets so that it will draw them in your content, make them tune in to your channel or go and search for that series you promoted by email.
In many media fields, audience work is seen as unimportant, especially in the journalism sector. But here again, it is key. No one will read a journalist’s article if no one worked on the audience to make sure it will be distributed in a way that acts as a magnet to them.
Samantha Tomaszewski wrote a great article on the subject, off a Twitter thread she had posted. In it, she details how audience work in the journalism field is so important to how actual content will be received, read and watched by any media’s audience.
Quoting one of her tweets:
“…in audience, you will learn things like:
– source info thru social listening tools
– package stories with effective thumbs + heds
– design catching graphics for social
– write clear, concise copy for push notifs
– decipher data + analytics
– pitch stories that will resonate”
This is what you are doing when distributing your content on online platforms. You are adapting the “pitch” to your specific audience.
And that is VERY important.
So how are you and your team’s time divided into working on your content versus working on your audience? Would love to hear from you on the subject.