The Power of Empathy: Creating Content that Connects with Your Customers, Part 2

The Power of Empathy: Creating Content that Connects with Your Customers, Part 2

Writer Contemplating Content | Mapping Audience Motivation | BlueprintGiven the current landscape of constant communication, any measure of silence can feel not only uncomfortable but unnatural. With a perpetual barrage of information vying for audience attention, not taking the opportunity to fill every available void may seem counterintuitive.

And yet, after making the effort to identify specific customer pain points, momentarily pausing the conversation in order to consider this feedback is a vital second step in empathetic content creation, as any first-class Atlanta SEO company can attest.

Anthony Silard, CEO of The Global Leadership Institute, maintains that “pauses in conversation, during which you think calmly and confidently about what you want to say next, are like the brief moments of silence between notes: without them you create noise, not music.”

Before stepping back into the conversation with their readers, businesses can use these brief but powerful pauses to form an intentional content strategy that harmonizes beautifully with their customers’ goals and desires.

Charting Audience Motivations with Empathy Maps

Creating an empathy map is one very practical way for businesses to better understand the particular factors motivating their audiences while leveraging those valuable insights accumulated through social listening.

Taking the time to distill subjective customer feedback, along with objective analytics, into a concise diagram allows companies to chart a course toward producing an array of focused, compelling content with the inherent capacity to convert casual readers into brand loyalists.

A simple empathy map starts with a generous square or rectangle, divided by two diagonal lines into four triangular quadrants. Each section is labeled as follows: Seeing, Doing, Feeling, Thinking. Beneath the quadrants are two additional boxes labeled Pain and Gain.

Placing a small symbol for the target audience at the intersection of the four triangles draws the quadrants together and illustrates the focus of the empathy map. This medallion can include a name, an image, a short list of known demographic features, or any combination of these.

Once the audience is articulated, the previously assembled data helps to inform each section. A series of questions such as these can serve as prompts for populating an empathy map with details that collectively illustrate customer motivations. The answers to these questions can ultimately guide the development of a content marketing blueprint.

  • Where do they live, work, and play?
  • Which kinds of media do they use?
  • How long is their attention span?
  • What is their preferred learning style?
  • What is the market already offering them?


  • What kind of feedback have they offered?
  • What are they telling others about you?
  • How and when do they engage with you?
  • What is their typical attitude/behavior?
  • What does their average day look like?


  • Why are they engaging with your content?
  • What are they hoping to gain/learn from you?
  • What things do they want to see change?
  • What is their experience engaging with you?
  • How are they made to feel appreciated?


  • Who or what influences them and how?
  • How do they access their information?
  • What are their communication channels?
  • What do they hear others say about you?
  • What are they telling themselves about you?


  • What are their primary fears/anxieties?
  • What are they trying to achieve/attain?
  • What are the challenges that they face?
  • What questions do they need answered?
  • What dilemmas keeps them up at night?


  • What do they want to accomplish?
  • How do they want to contribute?
  • What gets them up in the morning?
  • What does success look like for them?
  • How do they measure that success?

As Plato once pronounced, “wise men speak because they have something to say.” After having sought and listened to audience feedback, paused to consider their core motivations, and translated those insights into a tailored engagement plan, businesses are poised to respond and continue the conversation.

By connecting and communicating with their readers on a human level and seeking to meet customers at their points of challenge and desire, companies can effectively craft meaningful and personalized content that rises like music above the noise—and invites the audience to sing along.

By: Aimee Stokes