Earlier this week I received one of the greatest compliments I’ve had since I started blogging for small and medium-sized businesses. It happened when we were meeting with one of our clients – an institutional architecture firm – to review the third quarter.
First, here’s a little background…
I’ve been blogging for this client for about four months now. The experience has been very enjoyable. I’ve learned so much about architecture that I would never have had the opportunity to discover otherwise.
For example, I’ve learned how use of colour can influence psychological, physiological and social reactions in human beings – and why it is such an important element in healthcare design. I’ve learned the difference between a correctional facility and a healing facility; the latter of which offers convicted offenders a range of counselling programs and opportunities to interact with the community. Perhaps most interesting of all, I’ve learned how design can impact the efficiency of an organization, through use of specific tools that eliminate waste in an organization’s processes, while also working to optimize client wellbeing and productivity.
But blogging for architects also has its fair share of challenges. This firm has been around for over 60 years, and it is a leader in its industry. Architects take great care in what they do – and are often referred to as perfectionists. In order to be successful in their industry, you definitely have to have high expectations for the quality of work you put out. So I knew I had my work cut out for me when first meeting the team and taking on this particular ghostwriter role.
But, back to the meeting…
I had recently prepared an email blast written on behalf of the director (and owner) of the firm – I’ll call him John. The email was to be sent out to a large group of John’s colleagues whom he recently met at a conference. Up to this point, I had completed a few different assignments for this client on top of the regular blogging routine, but never had I taken on an assignment like this. It just seemed much more… personal.
I wasn’t exactly sure how to approach the task, but I thought I’d at least get it going so John could have a starting point, adding his fair share of revisions until we had a final product to send.
The morning of the meeting, when I showed him the email draft, I was preparing myself for all of the feedback about to come my way. After looking it over, he made one change – replacing a single word with its synonym (which he just personally preferred). And that was it.
“It’s like you’re inside my head!” He said to me, wearing a warm smile.
Little did he know, that one comment just made my entire week.
Changing Your Writing Style to Suit Different Brands
The key to blogging for brands is to capture the organization’s personality in your writing style. “You have to know your audience. And you need to mimic the way they speak,” writes blogging genius Erika Napoletano in a recent post on Open Forum. This is the ultimate goal for any business blogger; one I strive to meet every single day.
Capturing this voice is more challenging for some clients than it is for others. And it often feels as though I am constantly tailoring my communication style to suit multiple audiences, as I bounce from writing for an architecture firm to a transportation and freight audit company, then from a cord blood bank to an executive search firm. It’s all very exciting, but also exhausting at times – almost like I have to take on five different personalities in one day.
There’s no doubt I get it wrong sometimes. I write a blog post that’s too proper for one client, and then one that’s not formal enough for another. It takes a lot of time and attention to detail. But at the end of the day, there is nothing more rewarding than a client telling me I got it just right.