“Being successful at writing can be defined by one parameter: How well we know and resonate with our audience.” These are the words of freelance writer Christina M. Ward, one of the top earning writers on Medium, where earnings are determined by how much time readers spend consuming your writing.

Online reader

You may have already defined who your audience is, but what do they want? And more specifically, what do they want from you?

The Writing Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill suggests you ask yourself: “What does your audience need? …What do they value?”

Christina suggests you also ask this question: “What content of yours truly hit home with your readers?”

It’s this last question that can make all the difference in determining what content your readers like most — when it’s written by you.

In the 23+ years I’ve been publishing online, I’ve had plenty of opportunity to learn what readers want from me. And not so surprisingly, it’s a direct match with my natural talents.

I happen to be particularly good at categorizing concepts, putting them in logical order, and constructing a process that fits them. It’s not the type of skill that’s easily named. But when I look back at the significant jobs I chose or stumbled into, I can see the pattern. Computer programmer. Systems analyst. Product manager. Technical writer. Scientific researcher. Management consultant. Business coach.

When I compare that skillset to my statistically most popular blog posts, what do I see? 44 Ways to Follow Up with Your Prospects. 5 Steps to Build Your Business with Writing. Find Your Marketing Muse: 5 Types You Can Choose. Writing pieces where I met the needs of my audience by using one of my personal strengths.

If you don’t yet know what content of yours will truly hit home with your readers, look to your talents and skills to give you clues. The intersection of what your readers want with the zone where you naturally shine will reveal where the sweet spot for your writing lies.

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