Congrats, communicator! You’ve been tasked with writing blogs for your brand. It’s a big, important job, (it’s also fun, I promise!), and it can be daunting if you don’t know where to begin. Here’s the good news: you already have solid writing skills, and are adept at crafting messaging and stories in ways that are relatable and interesting. Since those are the top two brand blogging fundamentals, you’re already on your way to writing strong B2B blog content.

Here are four B2B blog content best practices:

1. Make your blog content relevant.

We live in a 24-hour news cycle; your audiences’ interests change constantly. Are they focused on the latest stock market plunge? This week’s political scandal? What the celebrity du jour is up to now? Whatever kind of organization you work for – and whomever your clients are – you need to be up-to-date, all the time. At my office we keep the news on all day; I make it a point to take a peek whenever I pass by the television. I also set aside time every day for “news monitoring.” Sometimes, as you’re reading the latest stories, ideas will come to you about how they connect to your business and/or your audiences’ interests/needs/challenges. Other times, you seek out the stories. The bottom line is that staying attuned to not just headline news but also popular culture (music, movies, etc.) is a big help to writing strong B2B blog content and vital to making it attention-worthy.

2. Say something counter-intuitive.

It’s easy to add your voice to the chorus of opinions on the latest news, but unless you say something different, you’re not likely to be heard. Ideally, you will have a unique take on the issue that separates you from the crowd. At Stern, we work with thought leaders whom we strive to position as different from their competitors, often sharing ideas or perspectives that are provocative or out of step with conventional wisdom. If your hands are tied by your organization’s stance, or you just don’t have an alternative take on a situation, then consider discussing how the news, event or trend impacts an area of business or life that hasn’t yet been addressed.

It’s easy to add your voice to the chorus of opinions, but unless you say something different, you’re not likely to be heard.Click To Tweet

3. Do your homework.

Nobody likes a know-it-all. But who people like even less is someone with more hot air than insight into what they’re talking about. Unfortunately, the internet and social media act as a megaphone for misinformation. So, when you’re blogging, make sure you know the facts. In many cases, you’ll be a breath of fresh air just for being informed.

4. Know your audience.

At the end of the day, you’re not writing for your own recreation. It’s your job to engage, educate and entertain a particular audience. This audience will, of course, vary based on what kind of blogger you are, what your organization does and with whom you do business. All the more reason to know the ins-and-outs of what your readers want to know, why they want to know it, and what kind of answers will leave them the most satisfied and ready to take action. It’s valuable research and intel that you will not only help you grab their attention for a few minutes, but convert them into long-term consumers of your content (and hopefully, buyers of your brand’s products or services).

Every blogger will develop his or her own methods and process. But these four guidelines are essential to producing valuable B2B blog content that will drive the reputation and growth of your career and your organization.

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Brian Sherry sees the “story” in everything. As a content writer and strategist with Stern Strategy Group, he specializes in shaping complex ideas into compelling stories about brands and individual thought leaders. He works with a variety of clients in the financial services, healthcare/biotech, business consulting, technology, non-profit and thought leadership fields.