My grandfather always told me to do what I do, and then do it again “with gumption!” And even though he was half-deaf and more than a little senile… I think he may have been onto something.
I was reading through my regular plethora of fitness blogs this morning and I realized something: They were dull. While content was informative, the rhetoric lacked personal appeal. Obviously these people did not have an old man that planted aspirations of “gumption!” in their heads a small child.
After doing a little research, I came across several articles that discussed the importance of personality in writing. Your blog is a cyber-esque version of, well… you. Therefore, by extension, it’s a cyber-esque version of the company or brand for which you are writing as well.
Think of it this way: I blog… Therefore I am… (pause for dramatic effect)
Whoa now, Descartes! We’re getting way ahead of ourselves here! Why not start with the basics, shall we?
According to marketing strategist Heidi Cohen, there are several tips one should follow to create a blogging personality that relates back to the company.
1.) Know your company’s personality and brand
Mind blowing, right? It may sound simple, but knowing your company’s history, background and stories will really bring your blog to life. For example, Crossroads in Kansas City operates under the phrase “Real. Communication.” The company’s brand is built off of honesty and ideas of integrity. This personality is depicted by many of the writers
2.) Be real
Right from the get-go, there is a perceived difference between you, the blogger, and that vast network of information-hungry blog connoisseurs. People will be looking for a reason to connect themselves with your content, and the best way to retain readers is to show them that there is actually a relatable person on the other side of that screen. In other words, show your reader your life has its ups and downs as well. The increases similarity between you and your audience, and eliminates corporate speak. Remember, readers must trust the writer before they commit to the writer’s subject (your company).
3.) Incorporate some level of emotion
Think about how you want your readers to feel when they read your blog. If you’re working for a non-profit animal shelter, chances are you want to evoke that same emotion into your writing. Excitement is contagious and emotional appeal is what retains an invested audience. The more emotion you can evoke, the more likely your audience is to interact with you and your company.
4.) Define your behavior
In other words: How much do you engage with your readers beyond your initial blog post? It’s important that you interact with your readers through multiple outlets. It is even more important that you display the actions that you discuss in real life. For example, if you blog about raising money for a philanthropic cause, then you had better be out there raising money yourself.
5.) Pay attention to language
Incorporate how you speak into your blog. If you have a southern accent, include that in the phrasing you use in your blog. Similarly, if you work for a company with a funny, light-hearted brand, then you probably shouldn’t f-bomb or overuse sarcasm. Think of it as an actual conversation.