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Wax Marketing Blog

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.

I’d also suggest subscribing to Copyblogger and Problogger for more tips on blogging for your business.

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16 Comments

  1. Webkatalog Verzeichnis
    Posted on April 8, 2010 at 7:54 am

    hey, really good article! i really enjoyed reading it!

    best wishes

  2. FirstFound Andy Says :
    Posted on April 8, 2010 at 9:24 am

    Excellent advice Beth, thanks very much.

    Too many coporate and business blogs just don’t have any personality whatsoever. And then they wonder why they don’t stand out from the crowd!

  3. Sheri Wallace
    Posted on April 8, 2010 at 6:02 pm

    I just shared this on Facebook. Fantastic article. It’s a delicate line between personal and business, and you do a great job of explaining it.

  4. Beth Graddon-Hodgson
    Posted on April 10, 2010 at 5:22 pm

    Thanks for reading!

    Andy – keep reading, I’ll be getting more into making content unique/authentic in a future post/posts so I’ll only say so much on my specific thoughts on your comment. But, to sum it up, I couldn’t agree more. Sometimes in a business where your content will be similar to many blogs (say in the dental industry), adding a little bit of personal touch provides the edge to set yours apart!

    Sheri – thanks for passing it along! I think it’s essential for people writing with business motivations to understand that there is a fine line, and swaying too far in one direction really can break just how effective the blog is. I don’t think there’s a foolproof way to find the balance, but it’s so important to remember it!

  5. Eric Says :
    Posted on April 10, 2010 at 11:20 pm

    This was an interesting read – I definitely need to start incorporating more of a personal touch in my blog. Up until now, I think it’s really been lacking in that respect.

  6. Beth Graddon-Hodgson
    Posted on April 11, 2010 at 7:51 pm

    Eric, glad to help! I visited your blog and saw today’s post, just those small elements really can help engage readers in a big way!

  7. noclegi Says :
    Posted on April 13, 2010 at 1:33 am

    I would simply mark them, it is obvious that people reason differently and a post that will not be marked as ‘personal’ may be understood as personal or as professional, depends on how personal it truly is.

  8. Keeping your business blog relevant | Wax Blog Says :
    Posted on April 13, 2010 at 8:56 am

    […] week’s post focused on choosing or understanding the two main writing styles you can use for your blog. That […]

  9. Gruvix
    Posted on April 24, 2010 at 9:27 am

    Good advices Beth. A personal touch makes the difference and increase blog quality.

    Best regards from Argentina,

    G

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    Posted on April 29, 2010 at 4:11 pm

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  14. Venetian Mirrors Says :
    Posted on May 2, 2010 at 8:43 pm

    When I blog, I put my related personal experiences in my content and that’s my way of putting my personal touch on my blog. Since blogging is one way of sharing, I tend to give out my thoughts and also ask readers for theirs.

  15. Victor
    Posted on May 7, 2010 at 3:40 am

    I do the same. I put something personal that may describe that it is me and it is my style to make it unique. As much as possible I will make sure that I am the only one has it.
    Better yet try asking the readers or ask for any suggestion to improve your page because for me it did work.

  16. Web Design Agency London
    Posted on September 30, 2013 at 5:42 am

    The bottom line is creating a balance so you don’t sound like a robot or like you are selling yourself instead of a business. Thanks.

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