It’s simple enough: I want to be moved and schooled by what I read. A book, a short story, an article, an essay, a blog post, a Facebook update or a Tweet — all of writing is good story — the push and the pull — the laugh and the tear.
Good story is the human experience, but it’s not so simple to tell– or, more appropriately, retell. Fifteen years ago an editor told me that, “You haven’t quite found your voice yet; you haven’t fallen through the center of the earth and back again. It takes experience and practice to find your inner voice, and not everyone gets there.”
We’re talking about business blogging, though. Right? The numbers vary but there millions if not hundreds of millions of active blogs globally today. Hey, anyone can write a blog post, right?
Yes, anyone can — although not everyone can move and school. It comes down to the writer and the voice, and it is highly subjective. You can be really darn smart, but if I can’t read you, I’m not reading you. I agree with that editor of old: good writing and voice come with time, but relevancy will always be key for your readers/audience/industry/marketplace.
I write for business and pleasure; I write about the greater HR B2B marketplace, marketing, career management and the world of work; and I write about fatherhood, personal leadership and domestic violence prevention. However, I’m still learning to be a better writer, of falling through the center of the earth and back again, and that comes with writing and writing some more as well as reading and talking shop with others who move and school.
When business blogging for personal or corporate brands, I recommend that you:
- Read and read some more and then read even more inside and outside of your immediate professional realm. Find the voices who move and school you across industries and disciplines and keep them close.
- Blog with regular frequency, relevancy and keep your posts to 300-500 words (although length is relative when it’s good). Remember, your voice comes over time.
- Cross-link with your relevant previous posts and others’ posts as well. This helps with SEO mojo.
- Keep in mind when promoting yourself or your brand via blogging to make it personal but don’t make it personal. You dig?
- Create an editorial calendar with weekly topics you can write about; they are powerful allies to create. But if something is timely for you to comment on, then roll with it and write about it.
- Take advantage if you have the luxury of an editor (not self-editing). Every great writer has one (or three).
And another thing, your business blog is where you can be credibly human and connect with your audience. Keep to a minimum your rants and self-promotional galavants.
Then maybe you can become a voice that moves and schools.