Ocean Science Communications

How to Inspire Connection with Your Audience by Speaking to Them

Your audience is looking for help solving a problem, so it’s important to position yourself in a way that aligns with your audience’s specific needs and makes them feel understood by sparking an immediate connection when they look at your content. 
Written by
Natalie Gilson
Published on
June 7, 2024

Written by Robin Contos, Content by Natalie Gilson

Think about the last product you bought, why did you buy it? How does it serve you? Does it make your life easier? Does it relate to one of your hobbies or something you’re passionate about? Most likely, it spoke to you in some way. People want to invest in products and services that feel like they were meant specifically for them. 

Bearing this in mind, now take a look at your website. Can you spot the words ‘we’ or ‘I’ on your homepage? How many times? Probably at least once and likely more. This is because, especially in ocean industry communications, we have a tendency to look inward and focus our messaging around the achievements, expertise, or unique perspectives our organizations can offer. 

Although these are important aspects, they aren’t what will catch your audience's attention. People want to be spoken to, not at, and the best way to do that is by flipping the narrative. 

What does it mean to flip the narrative? 

First we need to understand what it means to flip the narrative. Let's take a look at two different ways to share the same message in the first line of a website:

>> Option 1: "I am driven by a passion to share ocean stories."

versus

>> Option 2: "Empowering you to tell your ocean story in the most impactful way possible.”

The first option is all about you, while the second directly appeals to and involves your audience. It shows that you understand what your audience wants and is more likely to resonate as it places them at the center of your narrative.

Rather than using statements like 'we are experts in...', emphasize how your expertise can transform and empower your audience. Shift the narrative from a monologue about your capabilities to a dialogue about the possibilities. 

Your audience is looking for help solving a problem, so it’s important to position yourself in a way that aligns with your audience’s specific needs and makes them feel understood by sparking an immediate connection when they look at your content. 

Speaking to your audience

An important part of your core messaging is communicating to your audience that you care about the same things. In the ocean sector, we’re all linked by a shared passion to create a healthier ocean. This is something that is easy to incorporate into your messaging that will create an instant connection between you and your audience. 

“When you frame your content that way, you're sharing an instant kind of connection with the audience and bringing them into your story and helping them be interested in what it is you're doing because you have a shared purpose and passion.” - Natalie Gilson, Head of Ocean Science Communications at Pisces RPM 

When you foster a sense of belonging with your audience, they are more likely to invest time and effort into learning more about your organization, and, eventually, investing their money as well. 

Beyond establishing that you and your audience share the same passions, it is important to speak directly to them, through the simple reframing of flipping the narrative. 

The elements of flipping the narrative 

  1. Swapping your language from “we/I” to “you”: This first step is the most direct and straightforward, as well as the most important, piece to flipping the narrative. People like to be addressed personally, and when that happens right off the bat, they will be more likely to engage with your content and want to learn more. 

  1. Focusing on problems rather than solutions: This second element is just another way to show your audience that you care about the same things. When you clearly state the problem that your audience is seeking to solve, it shows them that you understand and sympathize with their needs. 

  1. Share stories rather than simply information: Using stories is a great way to connect with your audience and make your organization memorable. The human brain is hardwired to prefer narratives over raw information, so when you implement storytelling into your communications, you are creating a unique connection.

By following these few easy steps, you can set your organization apart by flipping the narrative. When your audience sees you as speaking to the problems they are facing and sharing their passions, they are more likely to choose your organization again and recommend it to people they know. 

“What you should start to see when you focus on a flipped and audience-centric narrative is that you get more loyal followers and more repeat customers.” - Natalie Gilson, Head of Ocean Science Communications at Pisces RPM 

Try flipping the narrative and see how your brand is transformed!  

To learn more about creating communications that speak to your ocean-centric audience, checkout Pisces Ocean Science Communications. 

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Natalie Gilson
June 7, 2024

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