The task of writing a corporate blog can be a massive beast to tackle. Corporate blogs require flawless information, a signature voice, and messaging that resonates with target readers on a personal level. That said, you need to have a granular understanding of the company’s branding elements and how to leverage them to accomplish desired goals.
Many writers approach the corporate blogging process with a misconception of what truly defines a “good corporate blog.” At the core level, blogging is all about relating to people and showcasing expertise. Regardless of the topic, focus, or target readers, this concept applies to just about every blog on the web.
There are millions and millions of business blogs out there, yet only a handful have writers who can truly knock it out of the park. Here are three of the most common problems that turn a corporate blog into a corporate snooze fest.
Problem: No Distinguishable Voice
Voice is crucial in blogging – especially in corporate blogging. To reiterate, there are countless amounts of blogs on the web. Chances are, there are hundreds (maybe thousands) of other blogs writing about the same topics you are. The voice is what makes yours special and different from the rest. Moreover, it’s a key element that makes the messaging memorable and relatable.
Perhaps the biggest mistake writers commit when crafting a corporate blog is thinking that the voice shouldn’t be fun, conversational, humorous, etc. Keep in mind, corporate blog readers are people too; no one likes reading content that sounds like it was written by a robot. Not only will this make it tough to read, it provides no distinguishable voice. Without this, it is nearly impossible to make a lasting impression on readers and keep them coming back.
Solution: Take a Deeper Dive into Your Target Readership
First and foremost, to establish a blogging voice that resonates, ditch the mindset that your readers are dull, corporate office drones. You need to understand your readers on a personal level and the types of quirks that strike a chord.
Start by defining common characteristics of the target readers:
- What are the primary demographics?
- How do these people typically talk (both in a personal and professional setting)?
- What are the common job descriptions (director, executive, chief, etc.)?
- What are their general career goals?
- What is their general outlook of the industry?
- Who are some of the big influencers they look up to?
These are just a few jumping off points to address in defining the target readers. To get a ground-level idea of these traits, make use of social media monitoring to help identify the commonalities and patterns.
From here, there needs to be a primary archetype of which embodies the brand voice. Common archetypes include:
- The Caregiver: Focused on helping others achieve their goals. The voice is nurturing, comforting, and has somewhat of a philanthropic essence. The Think with Google blog is a good example of this archetype.
- The Magician: Has deep-rooted objectives to facilitate change, is capable of influencing others, and encourages transition. Neil Patel’s blog does a great job in presenting a “Magician” voice within the messaging.
- The Hero: A strong motivator who takes a confident lead in tackling issues. The hero is competitive, protective, and in some cases, ruthless. Tesla’s corporate blog is a fantastic example of “The Hero” archetype.
- The Sage: A soft spoken, yet authoritative teacher, the sage is known to critically analyze problems to understand the root cause(s) and seeks deeper knowledge. The WooCommerce blog does a great job in conveying the “Sage” vibe and beginner friendliness.
Now, these archetypes are just a handful of options to consider. Moreover, they don’t have to be mutually exclusive. There can certainly be shades of multiple archetypes in the voice you use. The key is finding a balance that is unique and instantly recognizable.
Problem: Low Time on Page
Ideally, each of your blogs should have an estimated read time. Based on the website’s analytics, if the company notices that the average time on page is significantly lower than the read time, it’s a good indicator that people are losing interest early on. This is perhaps the most blaring sign that the corporate blog is missing the mark.
Keep in mind, readers can leave a blog post for all kinds of reasons. However, it’s important to note that corporate readers typically have very limited time to read blogs. If you want them to get through the entire post, you need to hook them quickly – like within the first paragraph or two.
A common issue that dooms many corporate blogs is the writer comes out of the gate with an overly sales-oriented vibe that focuses more on the goals of the company, rather than the pain points of the readers.
Remember, the point of a blog isn’t solely about sales; it’s about building rapport, trust, and credibility that you have the answers to pressing problems.
Solution: Lose the Sales Jargon!
Sales jargon is an interesting concept. On one hand, if you use too much of it in a blog, it comes off as overly promotional and bland. On the other, if you use too little, it might seem like you don’t know what you are talking about to industry experts. Moreover, if you use an industry buzzword or phrase in the wrong way, your credibility is shot.
To echo a common theme of this article, a good corporate blog is all about relatability. If you are simply writing a blog for the purpose of churning out promotional content about the company, you (or the company) are missing the point.
While some calculated use of jargon is certainly warranted in a corporate blog, write the content as if you were actually speaking. Make it personal. Present your topic in plain language and emphasize the root of the problem and why readers should take you seriously.
Insightly’s company blog does an excellent job establishing relatability right off the bat and clearly presenting the common pain points of their target readers.
If you look through the majority of their blog section, the common thread is that the posts focus on solving problems, not pushing sales. This is the key to keeping people tuned in.
Now, finding the reader’s most prevalent problems to address in the blog can be tricky. Fortunately, there are plenty of resources to pull from. A great place to start is by looking at the company’s reviews. Try to find the ones that offer the most 360-degree insight, as these will give you a great idea of the pressing problems that most people are dealing with in their industry. For example, let’s look at these customer reviews of Trustpilot:
There is a common issue related to small businesses having limited budgets. So, if you were writing for this company blog, a good problem to address might be about stretching a budget when managing customer sentiment – as opposed to pushing sales for add-on features or anything else.
Jargon is all about happy mediums. There is a fine line between using it to convey value and just being cheesy.
Problem: No Conversions
A corporate blog should prove expertise in the field and build trust with readers. Moreover, it should be written in a way that funnels people’s interest to engage – whether it be to sign up for an email newsletter, initiate a conversation, download a guide/e-book/whitepaper, etc.
For the most part, reading a blog post is something someone does when they are in the early stages of the buyer’s journey. If you are getting decent traffic but little-to-no desired conversions, this is a sign your content is missing the mark in a number of ways. Most importantly, it says you are not properly writing the content to nurture awareness and interest into taking action.
Truth be told, this is a problem that even some of the best corporate blogs struggle with.
Solution: Evaluate the Action-Ability
Before your fingers touch the keyboard to begin writing the post, you need to have a clear idea of what the desired action is for the reader as they complete the blog.
Is your goal to actually provide value to readers? Or simply get content written?
Look into the actual insight you are providing. Are you answering pressing questions and encouraging the next step?
Be honest with yourself. Ultimately, your ability to provide actionable insight is what makes you an exceptional writer.
For example, let’s say you are writing a corporate blog for a company that offers SEO services. One of the main goals of your post is to get people to download the company’s latest e-book on improving E-A-T Score. The blog should work to answer the big, overview-type questions like what exactly E-A-T Score is, how Google’s algorithms use it to determine rankings, etc.
Now, let’s say the e-book is an in-depth guide on how Your Money Your Life (law, finance, health, fitness, and so on) organizations can manage their E-A-T Score. The blog should emphasize how certain YMYL industries have been impacted and how critical it is to play by the rules. Then, elaborate on the e-book and how it has specific answers to help these organizations rank on the Google SERPs.
Generally speaking, blog posts are about bridging the gap between the awareness stage and the consideration stage of the buyer’s journey.
In order to gain precious conversions, you need to have a strong understanding of how you can craft posts in a way that sparks ongoing interest and prompts action.
Corporate blogging is not an easy job. As you are writing posts to appeal to industry professionals, you really need to know your stuff. Further, you need to be able to present these expert concepts and solutions in a way that resonates and builds the company’s credibility.
There are countless ways to go wrong when writing a corporate blog. However, these three problems are some of the most common ones you will run into. If you can push through them, you will be invaluable to any organization you write for.
This post was written by Kevin Svec. He is a Senior Copywriter and Content Strategist at E2M Solutions Inc. He spends his days researching the latest tactics to help businesses produce compelling content that resonates with people of all interest levels. Kevin also hosts E2M’s in-house podcast: The Marketing Microscope. When he’s not rock climbing or hanging out at one of San Diego’s many beaches, Kevin is writing for Impulsive Wanderlust, a travel and leisure website he founded. Connect with him on LinkedIn and Twitter.