If you want your content marketing campaign to be successful, you need to make sure it appeals to your target audience, both to achieve higher relevance for strategies like SEO, and to better hold attention from readers. If your target audience is made up of professionals, that means catering to industry considerations, including offering instructions, news, practical advice, and other materials that can improve their performance in a given niche.

But professional audiences are evolving, using new technologies, working in different environments, and developing new demands. For example, according to Dialpad, only 19 percent of full-time workers spend 40 hours or more behind a desk per week. Our workforce is becoming increasingly mobile, working remotely and on the go, and our content needs to change to reflect that shift.

How to Write Better Content for a Mobile Workforce

There are three major changes to consider when brainstorming new content:

  • Mobile devices are smaller and offer a different UI. As you've undoubtedly experienced in your own life, mobile devices tend to have smaller screens and more limited forms of interaction than laptops. This reduces the mobile experience and forces you to consider narrower, more precise forms of content engagement.
  • Mobile workers have less time. If a worker is constantly mobile, they're probably traveling from meeting to meeting and trying to fit everything into a tight schedule. That means they have less time and are looking for content to meet their needs quickly. As Content Marketing Institute points out, some of the best performing mobile content is also the fastest and easiest to read.
  • Mobile workers research immediate needs. When you consult your mobile device, it's probably for something you need immediately. Otherwise, it could wait until you were at a formal work station. That means your topics and your tone should be geared toward solving a problem as quickly as possible.
Tips for Improvement

So how can you take action to address these considerations?
  • Optimize for mobile devices. Your site should already be optimized for mobile devices; if you aren't sure, you can always run a check using Google's mobile-friendly tool. Your site should be responsive, meaning it adapts based on the size and shape of the device viewing it, and all your content should load quickly and easily. In addition, all your text should be clearly legible without having to scroll or zoom. This is a basic prerequisite if you want your content to be engaging.
  • Choose helpful topics. Your mobile workforce isn't as interested in reading high-level concepts; they want fast, practical tips. The more useful your content is, the better, so spend some time coming up with topics that are helpful for your audience. How-to guides, step-by-step troubleshooting, and tutorials are all good ideas here.
  • Write more concisely. According to the Purdue OWL, concise writing is a way to choose the most effective, efficient combination of words in your article. Writing more concisely doesn't necessarily mean using fewer words; however, that's often a side effect of the process. Go through your articles and eliminate any language that is redundant or unnecessary to achieve a complete understanding of your intended meaning. This will help your audience read through your content faster, getting to the point of your article rather than dwelling on the fluff.
  • Create more videos and visual content. Visual content is naturally more engaging, thanks to its appeal to our intuitive senses, rather than processed thought. According to Hubspot, the inclusion of a video can increase a page's likelihood to convert by 80 percent or more, and videos are much faster and easier to engage with than a written article on mobile devices. That doesn't mean you need to create videos instead of written articles, but you should consider including them more frequently--whether they're standalone content submissions or embedded enhancements in your core written material.
  • Make your text stand out. When you do write articles, you should structure them in a way that naturally appeals to fast readers using small screens. Break up your text into smaller paragraphs and shorter, separated sentences. Use bold and italics to make certain phrases stand out more than others, and use bulleted and numbered lists to make your listed items more obvious.
Once you implement these tips, you'll see several benefits for your overall campaign. For starters, your readers are going to be more engaged, and they'll get more out of your material. That means higher customer loyalty, more conversions, and of course, more comments and social shares, which will increase your audience further.

Beyond that, optimizing for mobile devices and attracting more links will increase your search rankings in Google--which is never a bad bonus to reap.
March 17, 2017

Jayson DeMers is the founder & CEO of AudienceBloom, a Seattle-based content marketing & social media agency. You can contact him on LinkedIn, Google+, or Twitter.

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