Writing content is not an act, it’s a lifestyle
Humility is a good value for a content developer. If you don’t have a curiosity about people, whatever empathy you claim will be false and probably devolve into some arrogant claims that will be immediately seen as an attempt to manipulate or insult the consumer’s intellect. But genuine empathy is rooted in humility and the understanding that many people contribute in life the same as you do.
As a content developer, it’s your job to start learning what makes people move or be moved. One thing is true: apps and artificial intelligence will never create relatable and relevant empathy-based content. Because content for any creative venture — be it journalism, public relations, marketing or any storytelling — requires relatability with the consumer. Something in it needs to make them care about what they are reading or experiencing.
We are always, whether we know it or not, searching for relatability around us. We have an innate curiosity about the experiences of others at some level. We make assumptions about people based on how they look or act, for better or worse, without really knowing the whole story. As content developers, we need to consider what we are doing finding the link within the message that connects the consumer with the idea. This takes intuition and empathy.
You must be a curious person to be a good content developer. If you have decided that content development is a value, you must add heightened empathy to your daily discourse. It would be best if you noticed your feeling and the feelings you see in others. Question what caused them to react positively or negatively in any given situation. Research needs to become part of your normality when you interact with people. It would help if you noticed how people respond to you depending on your tone. It would help if you noticed how other people react to being kind, cruel or indifferent and if you tried to see more than you likely have ever considered. It must become a habit. Once you get to that level, you suddenly start to see and hear little gems in the world.
Human interaction becomes a kind of poetry for you to consume and enjoy. When you begin to write or speak from that perspective, you become more relatable, and people are more drawn to you and your message.
Alex Raffi serves as Imagine’s Creative Director/Partner.