Today's blog post comes from freelance copywriter Ehtesham Ahmed, who submitted this question to us (and thanks for the compliment on our website, by the way). We thought it was a great question, and something that other readers might be interested in. So, below is the question and our answer: I was going through your blog and came across the article 'difference between articles and blogs' published in March 2012 and one thing came to my mind that there is lack of real understanding regarding the writing styles that are suitable for a professional corporate blog and one that is used to market the product or personal blogs. I have been increasingly seeing that many companies are putting up personalised posts in their corporate blogs. Could you care to comment on that?
Absolutely! Personalized posts are fine on corporate blogs and are, in fact, encouraged. The great thing about a corporate blog is that it allows potential customers to get to know the company, and the people behind it. Personalization is also a great way to show off your brand, whether your company's brand is whimsical, serious, cosmopolitan, or fun-loving. Your company has a personality, whether you like it or not (it's known as your brand), and showing off that personality in blog posts is perfectly okay. In fact, readers would rather read a personalized post than something that's just sales copy or marketing message.
Companies who choose not to include personalized posts are losing out in a couple of ways. First of all, people like to work with people they like and folks who share their values. Without personalization, it's hard for potential customer to know who they are working with and what they value. Second of all, such a policy can handicap your writers, especially if your blog post contributors are also employees. Why not let them show off who they are? They contribute to the company and to what the brand is all about, and are probably the people customers work with. Personalization adds the face to the company that oftentimes doesn't come from anywhere else.
Personality doesn't necessarily mean funny, goofy, or a lack of seriousness. For example, you wouldn't want to work with a law firm that's goofy and isn't serious about what they do. A law firm could still do this and have personalized posts by removing the jargon and writing a blog post with the commitment and the enthusiasm (you hope) that lawyer or law firm brings to the job. When it comes to business blogging, personality simply means adding the human side to your company and to the writing, whoever that person is.
Be Careful About Directly Marketing a Product
A corporate blog is for your readers and web visitors. IT IS NOT FOR YOU, and should not be all about you. Therefore, you need to be very careful about blog posts that directly market a product or discuss a product, as it can easily come off as too much about you and not about providing value to readers. Directly marketing a product should only be done under circumstances, such as:
- If you are reviewing a product that isn't your own, but one that your readers and web visitors are interested in.
- If you are announcing/promoting a brand new product, whether or not it is your own.
- If you have a personal blog, and you regularly promote and market products.
However, for typical corporate and business blogs, write content that delivers information your potential customers need, not content that makes a sale. Although, readers and potential customers do not want that information delivered in a dry, austere tone that lacks passion. Your corporate blog and its content should do both: deliver great information that's valuable while showcasing the passion, knowledge, and character of the company. Customers want to work with businesses that care about them, that know what they are doing, and that care about their product and service. They do not want to work with a company that treats its customers like transactions.