Dealing With the Downside in Business Blogs

businessman graphIt’s always instructive for me to observe different ways information is presented to readers. That’s especially true if the subject matter is “sensitive”.

Of course, in business blogs, it would be wonderful if everything were positive and all we needed to do was write about positive developments in our business or practice, about all the benefits that come from using our products and services, and about the flawless customer service which we’ve, without exception, provided.  And, of course, that’s not the way the world works, is it?

I was thinking about that the other day when I came across a guide sheet my college mentor colleagues and I had been given to educate us on ways to advise disabled students applying for internships and permanent employment.  The tutorial was called Disclosing Your Disability in three Steps.

I think all of us blog content writers can take a real lesson from that approach to putting a positive emphasis even when honestly disclosing not-so-positive information.

Step 1: Prepare to disclose.
Consider your strengths and challenges. To the extent you’re comfortable, the employer will feel comfortable.  Consider timing – before the interview, after an offer is made, etc.  Plan in advance.

“Thou shalt never hide the facts,” writes Georgetown University professor Robert Bies in Forbes Magazine. When hidden facts become public, you’ll look worse.  But, adds Bies, find positives associated with the bad news, positives grounded in reality. Focus the readers’ attention on the way your company or practice has solved, or is solving the problem.

Step 2: Prepare a script.
Write down what you want to say.  Keep the language simple and avoid being too clinical or detailed.  Remember, the employer will be interested in whether you’ll show up, and whether you’ll be of value to the organization.

One very important use for business blog content writing is exercising control over the way the public perceives any negative developments. The blog is the place to correct any inaccurate press statements

Step 3: Disclose.
Be confident.  You will teach your prospective employer how to respond to your disability based upon the way YOU are handling disclosing it.  Stress your courage and motivation.

As a corporate blogging trainer, I know how crucial it is to convey to customers, as well as to the online searchers who are y our prospects, the kind of message that will alleviate mistrust and create confidence.

Blog posts are like interviews, and sometimes, we content writers need to courageously deal with the downside!

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