So, you’ve completed your B2B blog strategy and your team has decided to write a series of blogs that relate to a core idea, relevant to your business. But, how and where do you start writing?
While there are many different ways to write a company blog, one of the more popular approaches is writing using a narrative style. In this blog, we’ll show you how to use your company blog to tell an engaging narrative—or story—that entertains and helps website visitors while also converting them into qualified leads for your growing company.
In a narrative blog, there are three primary movements, which should come as no surprise:
This first section of your blog content is where you should introduce the problem or opportunity your ideal customer is experiencing. Describe to the reader the potential risks and benefits. Ensure you tell your readers where the blog is going. How will they benefit from reading your blog content?
Here is where you craft the narrative of your blog content. Explain the way things should be and write about how your reader’s current problem or opportunity thwarts with this. Describe how bad things are or can become without the solution your company offers. Introduce your answer-to-the-problem or solution as the helpful and easy resolution to help solve the frustration. Explain how your solution re-orientates the reader to the new reality created by this specific solution.
While you mentioned a solution in the body of the blog content, here is where you introduce your company’s products and services as the ideal solution. Provide a strong call-to-action (CTA) that invites the reader to become a qualified lead and offer website visitors additional opportunities to read similar content (eBooks, case studies, additional blogs).
What you’ve just done is invited your reader into a story. Granted, a narrative form of business blogging may not always be the best approach for every piece of content your company develops. For example, a “listicle” or step-by-step style blog may not be as easily transformed into a narrative.
Any great story—including blog content—includes a relatable character. In a narrative blog, the reader is that character! As such, the blog is about them. Consider:
When writing, then, it’s important that you position the reader up as the main character, not your own products and services. For example, if you’re telling the story of David and Goliath, the reader is David and your products and services are the stones and the slingshot.
Using the work of A.J. Griemas as a way of dissecting stories, we can remember the basic sequence that follows: A Sender commissions an Agent to bring an Object to a Receiver. Along the way, the Agent will be assisted by a Helper and opposed by an Opponent.
In the case of your company blog, the sequence would be as follows: The Reader’s Job commissions the Reader to bring value to their Company. Along the way, the Reader will be assisted by your Products and Services and opposed by their Current Problem/Obstacle to Opportunity.
This is the narrative your readers will be living when they come to your blog. Without the needed assistance, they cannot fulfill their job. Your job is to describe how your products and services fulfill the role of Helper for the reader.
For example, say you sell exercise equipment to workout centers. Your ideal customer is a manager of these facilities. Your blog would tell the story as such: The Gym Management Job commissions the Reader to bring an ROI to the Gym Company. Along the way, the Reader will be assisted by your gym equipment and opposed by High Customer Expectations.
Of course, it’s more than likely your story will have several sequences spread out over several blogs. After overcoming one obstacle or seizing one opportunity, your reader will likely encounter a new one. In marketing, we call this The Buyer’s Journey.
A Quick Overview of the Key Storytelling Components
But when you know all of the key components of a good story, blogging about this for your business can be easier than you think. Simply ask:
Who is my ideal reader? (Agent)
What is their task? (Object and Receiver)
Who has commissioned them? (Their Job/Role/Boss)
What is getting in their way? (Opponent)
Which of my products and services will help them? (Helper)
Getting Started with the Narrative Approach to Business Blogging
If you’re having trouble answering these questions, Open Path is here to help. We assist companies in not only writing great, lead-generating blogs, but also help them with brand positioning and understanding who you should be marketing to and how. If you’re interested in this narrative approach to marketing, schedule a time to talk with us.