THE BLOG
04/29/2013 03:22 pm ET | Updated Jun 29, 2013

5 Ways to Make the Business Blog More Personal

Not everyone can blog -- it's a very niche style of writing. However, it seems like every business is trying to jump on the blogging bandwagon. Kudos to business owners for staying on top of web trends, but that doesn't mean everyone should start publishing willy nilly. Business blogs tend to be -- well, business-y. Here are 5 easy ways to make that business blog a little more personal.

1. Imitation is Flattery

Well before anyone starts blogging, they should know a few blogs that they like. What is it about these blogs? The high-quality writing, the personal narrative, the total lack of the third person? The best writers have their favorite authors, so read a few favorite blog posts before sitting down to write. Imitation really is the best form of flattery.

2. Talk to the Reader

Using the word "you" can instantly make writing more personal and less formal. Talk directly to those readers so that they'll feel a connection. Remember that this is a blog, not a white paper. There's nothing wrong with addressing the audience directly. Ask questions, try to relate to them and make them understand there's a real person on the other end of the blog.

3. Show and Tell

Sharing a few personal tidbits is totally acceptable. After all, a "business" doesn't write a blog, a person does. Make sure it's relevant and be wary of oversharing. For example, a post about "My SEO Tool" can include some information about how the blogger got into SEO. Did they make a big blunder early on? People relate to mishaps and mistakes -- not to experts who talk down to the readers.

4. Don't Forget the Byline

Depending on how the blog is set up (if it's just one blogger or a series of guest bloggers), make sure the reader knows who's writing them. A byline or "about me" is just a short paragraph on who this person is. What makes them an expert? Demand it of all guest bloggers.

5. I Want to Talk About Me

Along with "you," don't be afraid to use the first person. For example, "I found some awesome inventions at the conference this weekend!" is a lot more personal than, "There were some great inventions at the weekend conference." See the difference? So do the readers.

A business blog doesn't have to be stuffy -- in fact, it shouldn't be. Have some fun with it, but keep basic grammar rules in check.