When someone comes to your website, blog, social media page or group, ask yourself does this person feel at home? Your audience should come to your online real-estate and feel as if you know them. The best way to accomplish this is to get to know the language of your audience, and then use that same language.
On your website, it’s important that the language you use is to the point and concise so that your audience know what to do when they come to the website. You can’t use ambiguous language and expect anyone to know what to do or how to engage with your website, much less purchase anything or contact you.
Find Common Language
First, figure out what common language your audience (target audience) use that you also use. The way you can do that is observing how they talk in groups. Facebook has groups for almost any type of audience that you can join and observe. You can also ask questions. Look at how they phrase questions and the terms they use. The words that you both use will be simple.
Find Different Language
In some cases, you’ll discover that you have very different words for the same thing. For example, passengers on airplanes often call the runway a “tarmac” but pilots, due to their training call it a “runway” or “landing strip”.
Test Your Understanding
If you’re still not sure what your audience call certain things within your niche, you can conduct a poll. Find all the different terms for things, show pictures, and let the users choose what term they’re most likely to use. Then implement that term, oh and Twitter is great for running polls and having answers back in hours.
Remember: You’re Not Your Audience
Even if you think of yourself as one of your target audience members, you’re still not the audience or user. You may use terms that no one else understands, especially your actual audience because you’re too involved. Take a step back so that you don’t confuse yourself with your customers.
Know Their Problems
Also, you really need to understand your users’ problems and the solutions you can offer them within your niche. For example, if you have a website that recommends software to people, don’t assume they understand the terminology. Instead, focus on using terms that they know in relation to their problems and your solution. These aren’t just pieces of software; for example, use language like “HIPPA compliant digital file storage”.
Understand Your Products
It helps if you understand your products but from the end users’ perspective. The best way to do this is to follow up a few weeks after someone purchases your products or your recommendations. Ask them what they like about the product. Ask them to describe in their own words how they use your product.
Look at It from Their Point of View
Everything you do on your website needs to be looked at from the users’ point of view and tested to ensure that you’ve got it right. The only way to know is to find current users and people you know could be potential users, and ask them.
The point is simple, not everyone uses the same words to describe the same thing. Think about how much jargon accountants and lawyers use and how confusing it can be to clients when they’re trying to just get a will written. If you want your customers, users, audience, and influencers to truly understand you, then you need to truly understand them.