There are almost infinite ways of writing copy on your blog and getting the tone right can make a big difference to the eventual readership of your website.
In this article we are looking at the pros and cons of writing in a formal professional tone of a more friendly personal style.
In previous posts in our series on 29 debates bloggers have about blogging we have talked about connecting with our audience. So the first question to ask yourself is – who is reading your blog?
Writing with a Professional Tone
Longterm blogging success requires your site to build up authority. This means that your site is percieved as the definitive source of information for a specific topic, both by your readers and of course by the search engines.
A more formal professional tone to your site is going to help get that message across.
Give your Blog a Fun Injection
But blogging has always had an appeal based on the informal and easy going nature of our sites. I have no editor and can therefore write anything I like.
I can even drop in a favourite movie quote at random: I don’t want to talk to you no more, you empty headed animal food trough wiper. I fart in your general direction. Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries.
This ability to have fun with your writing is very powerful when it comes to keeping your posts entertaining. A reader is far more likely to engage with your text if they feel they might get something out of it. Web surfers are generally looking for something – information, entertainment, or more often than not, nudey pictures.
Keep the Balance Right
So in answer to the question, I would aim for building a professional site that will contain the highest quality content you can produce. Keeping things accurate and grounded will do your reputation no harm.
There are a number of behaviours you should defintely try to avoid:
- Immature rants. If someone writes something negative on or about your blog then resist posting up a torrant of foul mouthed abuse. This is the time to keep it professional. From time to time it will be appropriate to let of some steam but make sure it is informed, articulate and witty.
- Act Appropriately. If your site has an adult audience then you need to keep a reasonable level of maturity. The odd purile comment can go down in the right place but don’t over do it. However if your site is aimed at college students then you can be more relaxed!
- Keep on topic. Although some bloggers seem to get away with posting up the lunch time menu every day (do people really care? Really?) it is not something I would ever do myself.
Ultimately you will need to look hard at who you want to read your blog and think carefully about what kind of content would be appropriate in this situation.
I try to keep my blogs factual, interesting and with a smattering of smart jokes throughout. Well… I try to! Whether I succeed or not is another question for another post on another blog…!