06 Apr Adding a personal touch to your business blog
By Beth Graddon-Hodgson
Once you’ve chosen a focal point for your blog – your vague subject area on what you’ll focus upon, the next step is to start making more specific decisions about the writing style. When writing each blog post you can make them personal or topical – or any combination of the two. In order to get a feel for what might work best for your blog, I’m going to provide you with some basic guidelines about what each of those categories mean. With this post, the focus will be upon personal business blogs. A second related article next week will discuss topical blog posts.
A personal blog isn’t necessarily what you’re thinking. Often I find these get associated with being online diaries for people who want to write about their day-to-day lives. There is a big network of mommy bloggers who attract a following by writing about different aspects of raising children, managing a household, and often balancing that with outside influences like a career and social agenda. The blogs are fun to read, they’re relatable, but if you solely write things like that on your blog that’s posted on the website of your dental practice, you’ll never accomplish your goal of effectively blogging for your business.
A personal focus on a business blog doesn’t mean you’re writing about the developments of your new baby, what you ate for lunch, or that you’re taking a trip to Mexico. Those things can be integrated into your posts, because they lend an element of the personal, but that can’t be the point of your posts.
As a business, you’re blogging from your perspective about the industry you’re in. You write in first person, you mention your business by name once in a while, and you can incorporate personal stories provided you tie them in with what your business is all about. If you’ve got a child who’s just starting to eat solid foods and you run a dental practice; mention that he/she tried yam for the first time at dinner last night, and then go on to discuss the importance of increased oral health and why.
Personal blogs don’t even need to integrate the truly personal. If you don’t want to talk about your last family vacation, don’t do it. Instead you can talk about your business, what you’ve learned about the industry, experiences with clients that have shaped your values etc. If you want to get a feel for how to do this, a great example is Bonnie’s post on social media; where the message is all business, but some of the content is personal.
Personal blog posts don’t need to be written by the owner of a business either. When working with a professional blogging company, information about personal experiences, about the history of your business, feedback from your clients etc can all be passed along to your writer to incorporate.
It doesn’t have to be either/or either; your blog doesn’t have to be distinctly personal or distinctly topical, but having one main focus or setting a schedule that aligns reader expectations is essential.
Sometimes it can also be hard to differentiate whether a blog post is personal or topical. Now that you’ve got an overview of how to incorporate personal posts into your business blog; what would you classify this one as? There’s no right or wrong, but do tell and I’ll share my perspective next week when topical blogs are up for discussion!
Beth Graddon-Hodgson is a professional writer/blogger and the founder of WriteSourcing a professional blogging, writing and editing service. For more about Beth, read my interview with her.