An anecdote submitted by a grandma to Reader’s Digest reminded me of something my own maternal grandmother taught us grandkids: there are at least two sides to every story.
The opthalmologist’s very cute assistant was examining my 20-year-old
grandson, when out of the blue she said, ‘You must really work out.’ ‘Well,
yes, I do,’ said my grandson, beaming. ‘I run and lift weights. Thank you for
noticing.’ ‘Oh, you misunderstood,’ she said. ‘You have popped blood vessel
in your eyes. We see that with people who work out.’
As a corporate blogging trainer, I’m always considering different ways of communicating with online readers. Basically, I think of myself and my writers at Say It For You as offering a sort of matchmaking service that helps our clients “meet strangers” and hopefully convert at least some of them into friends and customers. At the same time, we need to keep in mind that readers’ will process the information we offer in the context of their own past experience.
Part of the secret to avoiding misunderstandings lies in our getting to know our target market. “There’s no hard and fast rule that governs what fields are mandatory for all landing page forms,” cautions Meghan Lockwood of HubSpot. “Instead, marketers need to review their sales and lead generation goals and balance how much information they absolutely need from their leads vs. how much information those prospects will actually provide on a first form,”
Even with the best of research, different consumers are going to process our content in different ways. That’s not necessarily bad news. In blogging for business, why not present several aspects and opinions on an issue, allowing for the merits of each? In other words, make clear that this business or professional practice has chosen to carry on in a certain way, but that there were other options. Let readers come to their own conclusions about which approach is more in tune with their needs and opinions.
Understand your target market, but don’t be afraid to express a strong opinion. There’s something to be said for blogging the second side of the story!