I was inspired by Darren Rowse’s article about writing reader profiles to inform your blogging.
Darren Rowse, for those of you that don’t know, has been blogging since 2002 and writes a number of successful blogs including ProBlogger.net which aims to help bloggers learn the skills of blogging and is one of the most successful sites on the net. I have been reading his stuff for years now and he has helped me immeasurably.
Darren feels that after you have created these reader profiles you are better able to connect with your audience and create relevant content. The following subjects need to be covered in the profiles:
- Financial Situation
- How they use the Web
- Motivations for Reading the Blog
- Experience with the topic – Level
So, based on the readers that contact me personally, leave messages and promote my stuff through Twitter, etc., here are three reader profiles for this blog:
Gary, freelance graphic designer
Gary is 32 and describes himself as a creative graphic designer. He has a good degree in design and has always been known for his creativity and artistic nature. He has held a number of good jobs in studios in London, UK, mainly working in print design and corporate identity.
However, Gary is frustrated by the limited opportunities afforded him both by his current employers and the financial situation. Ever the resourceful person, Gary has already started taking on a bit of design work through various contacts and dreams of setting up his own design company. As he wishes to settle down with his long-term girlfriend and start a family, a greater degree of financial security is hoped for.
Another frustration for Gary is that he has been involved in print design but is fascinated by the internet and mobile worlds and is obviously extremely tech savvy. He is teaching himself web design and has just moved to WordPress and a CMS of choice for his personal site which stuggles for traffic.
Gary has visited RobCubbon.com many times in the last few years whilst surfing for Adobe CS tips and has found information on blogging and starting your own design business very useful and so eventually subscribed to the newsletter.
Sanjit, junior SEO, article marketer and budding entrepreneur
Sanjit lives in a middle class suburb in Bangalore and has finished his further education in design and marketing. He works in a large SEO outsourcing company in the center of town but spends his evenings and spare time glued to his laptop reading and participating in blogs, forums, social sites and wikis, learning about design, internet marketing, mobile communications and anything connected to running a successful online business.
Although, Sanjit still lives with his parents, he’s going to get married next year and therefore wishes to make more money online. Sanjit’s dreams for his future business are general and unfocussed due to his young age but he believes his developing skills in English, writing, design, SEO, SM and marketing will stand him in good stead in the future.
He gathers information from a wide variety of sources online mainly stemming from social networking groups.
Heather, employed super-mom
Heather is 48, from Perth, western Australia, has held a long term part time job in recruitment and is finding she has more time on her hands now that her kids are grown up. Having put her career on the back-burner through years of bringing up children, Heather is now dead set on utilising her skills to create an online business. Heather is university educated with a degree in geography but has taken a number of home study and online courses in design, writing, reiki, herbal medicine, to name a few, and has been on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter for a while developing connections both real and virtual.
Her dream is to run a website selling homeopathic remedies as this is something she truly believes in. Her nature is hands on and so is starting the daunting task of learning ecommerce web design from the ground up. Being cautious and intelligent, she has created a WordPress.org blog to write about the subject first and is encouraged by the increasing traffic and the early signs of a developing community. RobCubbon.com is one of many, many blogs she is using to discover how to develop a brand and sell products.
My readers and visitors
One of the reasons I thought this may benefit me is that I have been worried about the somewhat changing subject matter of this blog. When I started blogging in 2006 I was working in print design and the articles reflected that.
My blog has since morphed into being about print design, web design and internet marketing. These changes have been not only because of my changing interests but also because of the changing requests from my visitors and my clients. The world is very different now in 2011 to how it was in 2006. The recession has meant that people want improved website design as well as getting that website found through search engines and now social media and interest in traditional media has waned.
But it is essential that I take my readers with me.
So, as always at the end of an article, I must ask you to tell me what you would like to read about. What problems do you have in your professional lives at the moment? What is stopping you from achieving your dreams?
What do you think of my reader profiles? Is one of them close to you? 🙂
The most important thing I take from writing these reader profiles is that all the personas have one thing in common. They want to use the internet to either further their businesses or create businesses: they are all entrepreneurs! Is this true of you?
Ayman Aboulnasr says
Excellent article Rob,
I have a feeling that readers profiles sorta remind me of something we used to do when starting a new web design project, called Personas. A persona is almost identical to readers profiles, however they represent any website, not only a blog.
By the way, I’m a Gary in a way! 🙂
Rob Cubbon says
Yes, Ayman, in Darren Rowse’s post originally, he called them Personas as well. I thought you’d be a Gary. It amazing to think that so many of this blog’s readers are running a company or, at least, thinking of running a company!