At Issues Ink we talk a lot about audience, message and channel. Know who you are talking to, clearly define the message and identify the best possible path forward. Effective and engaging communication starts with taking the time to analyze the target audience.

Identifying ‘growers’ as the audience is just part of the process. Anyone and everyone in the industry will say growers are their audience. Content marketing is about engagement. To foster impactful engagement, you need a deep dive into your target audience persona so that you can assess what content will resonate with them.

Author and speaking coach Lenny Laskowsi created a terrific acronym — A.U.D.I.E.N.C.E. — that serves as a tool to help you with that deeper dive. Consider the following when developing messaging and content:

A – Analysis. Start with a general identification of who your audience is. Are you targeting another business, or creating content with growers in mind?

U – Understanding. What is their knowledge on the subject matter?

D – Demographics. Go beyond simple considerations like geographic region, age, or gender. Draft an audience persona. Consider their business profile, as well as them as individuals.

I – Interest. What is the audience interested in that you could provide? Why would they consume your content?

E – Environment. Are there external topical or environmental issues facing the audience? For example, is the audience facing drought conditions? Or, has a new competitor entered the market? How may this influence your content development?

N – Needs. What are the audience’s needs? What are the ‘pain points’ that you may be able to solve?

C – Customized. What specific needs should be addressed in the content? Keep messaging simple and focus on one need at a time.

E – Expectations. What are your audience’s expectations of you and your content? How can you meet or surpass them, thereby creating a deeper engagement?

Understanding your audience is the crucial first step in content marketing. You need an in-depth appreciation for your audience before you can tailor the message for them, and before you decide what channel is best to reach them. If you’re trying to communicate and connect with everyone, then your content is actually for nobody.