Insights > Who is your ideal reader? Define them and write for that person(a).


Who is your ideal reader? Define them and write for that person(a).

Who is your ideal reader? Define them and write for that person(a).

The modern landscape of online networking and content creation is very competitive. Just scroll through your LinkedIn feed and you'll be met with countless ads, articles and lengthy celebrations of company success - so standing out from the crowd is no easy task.

Thought leadership is a great strategy for subject matter experts to carve out a place for themselves in this online landscape and present experience and wisdom in a range of engaging formats. Taking the time to identify, understand and write for your ideal reader will ensure your content is relevant and makes a lasting impact.

3 Steps to Write for your Ideal Reader...

Who are you reaching out to? 

While each piece of thought leadership content you write shouldn't be considered as a method for instant business wins, it will enable you to engage with a relevant audience and attract prospective new clients. Deciding who you want to engage with will help you identify how to customise your content for your readers.

The first step of your journey is to:

  • Consider the persona of your ideal reader.
  • Identify where you are going to reach them.
  • Understand how you will draw their attention to your knowledge and experience in a transparent format, that differs from highly corporate marketing content.

Review existing thought leadership in the market

The second step is to review existing thought leadership in your niche. Research other thought leaders in two ways—externally by researching your competitors, and internally by going through your company’s existing content. Analysing what’s already out there will help you get a better understanding of main issues facing your industry, who the thought leaders are, and what trends are popular. What content are you seeing with the most engagement from your ideal reader? Are there any gaps or opportunities in the market for you to capitalise on? 

It is important to understand the current thought leadership landscape so that the content you create is unique and original - take this as your opportunity to stand out. Consider different formats for your thought leadership, which could take your content to the next level. Is your ideal audience engaging with written content, video, or podcasts...?

Use the 'ideal reader persona' to generate ideas

Now you've identified your reader, and understand the thought leadership landscape in your industry, use this research as a source of inspiration to write about issues they care about and want to engage with.

  • What problem is your reader currently facing? 
  • How can your expertise provide solutions to them?
  • What content format does your reader engage with most? 

As a thought leader, your most powerful insights come from your unique experiences and knowledge - make the most of them. Bring your voice to the landscape in the most effective way, remember that you want to share your expertise to a wide audience and engage with like-minded people in your field.

Much of the thought leadership I see is really light, where the writers don’t share the real gems, tips, and actionable insights. True thought leaders are always ahead of the curve, and shouldn’t be concerned with giving away too much.