The recurring news cycle that focusses on everything from disastrous climate change to political upheaval and terrorism makes it easy to be negative.
Many marketers attempt to harness negativity as a tool for blogging, writing blog posts with titles like ’10 Ways You’re Failing Your Customers’ or ‘The Big Mistake You’re Making That Could Cost You Your Business.’ This evolutionary, instinctual fear can be a powerful motivator for buying decisions. It prompts readers to ask: what am I doing wrong? How do I change?
However, when you use this kind of negative marketing you’re also risking reader paralysis. Sure, the reader may be motivated by the fear, but they may also be paralysed by the doubt that your negative marketing has evoked.
At the end of the day, all your piece has shown them is where they are going wrong, not what you can do to help them succeed. You have given them no solution, only a problem. You’ve made them feel anxious, demoralised or frustrated. Instead, a better approach is to blog with this in mind:
How can I make this blog post valuable to my readers?
Below, I’ve outlined a few tips on how to blog positively and deliver this value to your customers and potential customers. These are tips that we follow every day, as we create content for our clients. We’ve found that it’s an approach that really works.
Best-selling author and ‘brand story strategist’ Bernadette Jiwa has built a successful business on the philosophy: ‘People don’t buy what you do, they buy how you make them feel’. This is a great way to look at selling. By inspiring trust and good feelings in your readers, you make them want to do business with you.
Blogging is a great way to inspire this ‘good feeling’, because its style is more personal than a brochure or a small ‘About Us’ paragraph on your website. (It is also a good way to increase website visibility, through sharing on social media and increased reach through search engines).
Write your blogs with this in mind: positive blogs = positive brand. Be the ‘good feeling’ that readers get addicted to, want to hear more of, and eventually buy from.
Our Positive Blogging ‘Toolbox’
- The title of your blog is what your reader sees first. You want that first message to be positive, so make sure your title is a promise, not a criticism. For example, this blog post could have been titled ‘5 Ways Your Negative Blogs Are Losing You Business’, but that incites fear, not hope. A negative title won’t build up the confidence or loyalty of your readership. In addition, if your content is valuable to your reader, you’ve kept your promise, which establishes your authority as a blogger for future posts.
- When considering the style and tone of your blog, aim for informal and accessible. You want your readers to feel like they are talking to the human side of your company and that you are open to dialogue.
- Add social sharing buttons at the bottom of each post. As well as creating a larger potential audience for your business, social media provides a platform for positive, open discussion around your topic.
- Humour is good for projecting honesty and openness. If you are actively trying to entertain your readers it reveals that you are a customer-orientated company. You’re not pitching; you’re engaging with your readership.
- Have an active awareness of your audience – you’re writing for them! Figure out who your audience is (read our blog on ‘Buyer Personas’ for more information on how to do this) and change your format or jargon to suit them.
- Look over previous customer FAQs and use blog posts to answer them. This portrays your company as a problem-solver and will create a positive response from your readers.
A blogging expert, Matt Wolfe, has observed that: “There’s a lot of information out there [on the internet] for free, so you’ve got to figure out what makes your information different.”
This is so true. When you are blogging, you need to consider what makes your company and your blog post special. What can you offer your readers that nobody else can? This is probably the most important tip for blogging well: don’t forget why you’re writing in the first place.
Stay true to your company ethos and demonstrate what makes you different in your posts. If you’re a design company, make sure your page design reflects that. If you’re a customer-facing company, be active in the comments. Display your strengths, your progress and most importantly your value to customers. Your readers will scroll past hundreds of blog posts every day. You need to communicate what makes yours different and worth reading.
At Tenfold, positive marketing is at the forefront of everything we do. We aim to encourage, uplift and inspire our clients to market themselves with confidence and authority. We offer solutions, not problems. We look at how our clients are already succeeding and build on that. It’s a method that delivers fantastic results.
What are your thoughts on positivity? Do you agree that it’s more powerful than negativity? Leave a comment below.