Blogging Styles: Do You Know Yours?

Blogging Styles: Do You Know Yours?
Like us on Facebook

Blogging Styles: Do You Know Yours?No two people are exactly the same. Different styles and opinions are part of what makes the human race so interesting.

If you told two authors to each write an article on the same subject, no matter what, they would both turn out completely different.

In fact, even if you plotted points for them, gave subheadings and imposed a word limit, you’d still end up with two completely different articles.

Something that’s been on my mind a lot recently is my own blogging style.

It’s no secret that I’ve been writing for businesses for a long time. But now I’m writing for bloggers and there’s a huge difference.

When writing for businesses you have to be professional and make sure your writing doesn’t make you seem incompetent in any way shape or form. Businesses want facts and pertinent information from reliable sources. If you give them any reason to doubt you, they’re not going to take you seriously.

Now, I’m not saying that bloggers don’t need good information – because they do.

What I mean is, there’s a difference in how you should write, depending on what audience you’re writing for.

There's a difference in how you should write, depending on what audience you're writing for. Click To Tweet

Businesses are unlike bloggers in the way that they are often faceless and so therefore lack personalities.

Logo’d entities need information, not entertainment.

Bloggers are people – therefore, if I’m writing for bloggers, I need to write for people; not faceless entities.

I’ve recently realized that my blogging style needs to change and become more conversational, and overall more fun. I want people to enjoy reading my posts.

I tried to do that in my last post -click here- but ended up with a weird mish-mash of both professional and informal writing.

I feel like I was holding back.

I don’t want to appear like a stale, emotionless character with nothing to say other than facts and stats.

So, I’m opening up in an attempt to let my personality flow out of me like a burst pipe.

I’m cutting down on the “professional” crap, and from now on you’re going to get 100% all me. No substitutes, no additives or flavorings, just pure me on a page.

The reason I started thinking about this recently and ultimately decided to make the change was because of a guy named Ryan Biddulph.

He’s a “Blogger in Paradise” and I wholeheartedly envy his situation. He’s made a life and living (and what an impressive one too) out of blogging and writing – something I’ll freely admit that I am yet to do.

Previously, I was only reading blogs from people such as Neil Patel, which are very professional – but their articles aren’t always entertaining.

Do I learn stuff? Yes.

Do I enjoy reading every single article? Hell No.

Ryan’s blog is different, and REALLY got me thinking a lot about what I’m doing with my my blog and where I want to go with it.

To show you what I mean, I wanted to show you some of the other blogs I read and go through what I do/don’t like about them and where they fall on the fine line between formal and personal blogging.

I’ll tell you where I want to fall on that line too. Will it work in my favor? Only time will tell.

One thing I do know though is that I enjoy every single one of Ryan’s articles in full – hand on my heart – no skim reading.

I want my readers to have that feeling about what I write.

That’s the goal here.

I don’t want to write just to give information, that’s what wikipedia is for. I want to entertain, take the limelight and inspire the crap out of my readers.

Sometimes the biggest compliment to someone’s work is imitation, and I hope Ryan’s pleased that his articles have inspired me.

To illustrate my point, I’m going to analyze 3 authors and their writing styles.

The authors I’ve picked to write about are 3 of my favorites. I chose them for the following reasons;

  1. They all blog about blogging tips.
  2. They all write content of a similar length (2,000-5,000) words.
  3. They each have different styles that illustrate my point.

I recommend all 3, and I’m not going to reference any of their work – I’ll leave you to visit their blogs and see for yourself.

So without further ado, lets get started!

1. Neil Patel – Formal

Neil Patel

Neil is the author of his “personal” blog at neilpatel.com and another blog at quicksprout.com.

I read both of these blogs regularly. I’ve been reading them for a couple of years now, and to say they’ve helped me massively would be an understatement.

But, as I said, sometimes I don’t take the time to read all the articles in full. Usually, I will just skip to the main point and find out what I want to know.

These blogs are at the far end of the “Formal” scale.

For me, the part I enjoy the most is finding out new stuff. I love learning new things, and especially those backed by authority.

BUT, that’s all I read them for. The articles, although factually correct and interesting from that perspective, are not entertaining.

That being said, Neil will always be my go-to guy for learning the “correct” way of doing something. To me, he is the authority in the blogging tips niche.

2. Jon Morrow – Formal With Personality

Jon Morrow

Jon blogs over at boostblogtraffic.com.

I’ve been reading his articles for over a year, but consistently reading each one for about the last 6 months.

One of the cool things about Jon’s blog is that the majority of the posts are by guest authors.

Jon himself only posts 1-2 times per month. But every single one of his articles are immaculate, so I’d imagine that’s why he doesn’t post too frequently.

I enjoy Jon’s articles much more than some other authors, for one simple reason; he shows personality.

Jon tends not to sugarcoat things. If he sees a common mistake with bloggers, and he thinks those bloggers are idiots, he’ll straight up say it.

I love how blunt he is and honestly, each one of his articles is like a little kick in the butt that helps you keep moving along and encourages you to push harder.

3. Ryan Biddulph – Personality

Ryan Biddulph

Confession time. I’ve only actually been reading Ryan’s posts on bloggingfromparadise.com for a couple of months.

But that’s okay, there’s thousands of writers out there, and I’m not going to find them all at once.

What does matter, is that I’ve read every single one of his recent articles from start to finish – and they’re not short either!

My favorite thing about Ryan’s writing style is that he gives you tips and useful information, but he also tells you a story. He has a conversation with you through your screen without requiring any of your input, yet by the end of it you feel like you just spoke to an old friend or mentor.

His conversational tone gives a feeling of trust and humanism that you don’t see from a lot of other bloggers.

So, which style do you pick?

Don’t get me wrong, I’ll happily read work by any of the above, and I’m not going to stop any time soon; but each one for different reasons.

Neil Patel is the blogging god. I’ll read anything by him (at least in part) because I know it’s going to be valuable to me. It feels kind of clinical, but also very precise and efficient.

Jon Morrow provides great blogging tips, but in a “take no shit” attitude. I learn everything I need to, as well as how not to be an idiot.

Ryan Biddulph gives me awesome blogging tips while also allowing me to really enjoy reading them and actually feel kind of disappointed when it’s over. His articles leave me inspired and wanting to read and write more.

At the end of the day, whatever you write should be a part of you. However it feels comfortable to write, should be how you write.

That’s one of my own teachings that I’ve forgotten recently.

I was so focused on giving good information without boring anyone, that I forgot to have fun. That’s one of the reasons I haven’t posted for a couple of weeks, I just wasn’t enjoying it.

If I’m going to spend this much time and effort putting a post together, I at least want to enjoy it.

It’s something I’m working on, and with progress I’m sure the posts will be more frequent and enjoyable.

So, which of the blogging styles do you have? Can you categorize any other bloggers into either formal, personable or a mix of the two? Let me know in the comments!

Tom Watts
Follow me

Tom Watts

Blogger from England, living in Canada. I blog about blogging, SEO, Social Media, Web Design etc. Monday lover, coffee consumer. The glass is always half full. Read my full story here: Read More
Tom Watts
Follow me

Latest posts by Tom Watts (see all)

10 Comments

  1. Hi Tom,

    OK let’s be transparent man; did you get my Paypal payment LOL. Thanks SO much for the kind mentions up top. I dig your clarity; from the post above to your comments, I feel like I am talking to a cool dude offline somewhere, totally natural, totally chill, totally you being you. Neil and Jon are both so awesome at what they do. I once attempted to tie their blogging boot straps but didn’t even bother.

    If you’re having fun, your style will flow naturally through your posts. I can see easily that you’re having loads of fun Tom, which is a joy to watch. Thanks again for your endless support and congrats on your eBook!

    Ryan

    • Tom Watts says:

      Hey Ryan,

      You’re SO welcome, and I’m glad that the conversational tone is coming through. I am starting to enjoy blogging again, and to be honest it’s your blog that’s enabled me to do that, and so it’s really me that should be thanking you!

      Talk soon,
      Tom

  2. Hi Tom,

    Many thanks for sharing YOU. It’s aways great for me to discover bloggers who are prepared to “just say it like it is”.

    Just like you I am a big fan of Ryan Biddulph – he is a genius at providing valuable content in such an entertaining way. you summed him up perfectly when you talked about “feeling like you had just spoken to an old friend”

    I look forward to visitng your blog again soon and to read the new approach being taken by Tom to hs blogging business.

    All the best from Thailand

    Peter

    • Tom Watts says:

      Hi Peter,

      Thanks for the comment, and I’m glad my message came across how I had intended it to! I’ll be providing a lot more personal posts from now on for sure.

      Ryan is great and has been really inspirational to me recently. I hope to eventually inspire my readers in the same way.

      Thanks for subscribing too, I’ll be checking out your blog as well 🙂

      Tom

  3. Adrienne says:

    Hey Tom,

    We recently connected on Twitter so I wanted to stop by and see what you were all about. I actually happen to LOVE this topic.

    First off I agree with you that businesses lack personality and boy are they ever missing the boat with this one. Facts and figures are good to an extent but they have to remember who they’re writing to and that’s us, their customers.

    As for bloggers, you’re absolutely right. You need to speak to your target audience and like Ryan, my posts are conversations. I started out writing very professional because I came from a corporate America background but eventually burst out of that and just started being me. It’s the best thing I could have ever done for myself and as they like to say, the rest is history.

    Thanks for sharing this with us and I have no doubt that from this moment forward you’ll start getting a lot more attention from your readers. When they feel more welcome and that you’re writing just to them then you’re going to get much more feedback.

    Great to visit your blog and you have a wonderful ending to your week.

    ~Adrienne

    • Tom Watts says:

      Hey Adrienne,

      We did, thanks for visiting the blog 🙂

      You’re right, the fact that businesses post for customers and should be doing this too is a whole other article!

      Thanks for the support, I really appreciate it! I’ll be checking out your blog too and hope to connect with you again soon.

      Tom

  4. Sarah says:

    Hi Tom,
    Great post! I’m also a long-time fan of Neil and Jon – they’ve produced some great work and I’ve learned so much from them. I’d not come across Ryan’s blog before but looks like someting i’d enjoy 🙂

    My blogging style? The pieces I used to post on my parenting blog definitely had a personality thing going on as it charted my life bringing up two small children (In a humerous way). My copywriting blog leans more towards formal but still has the kind of tone you’d see in a lifestyle magazine article. I have a natural tendancy to write conversationally and I think that’s a good style for blogs of all types whether they’re for large businesses or not, after all it’ll be other humans reading them.

    Keep up the good work!

    • Tom Watts says:

      Hey Sarah,

      Thanks for that! Neil and Jon are great, I’m just really into Ryan’s blog at the moment. His style of writing is so genuine, and I feel like we’re on the same wave length although we’ve never met.

      Seems like you have your style figured out – I think it’s good to have humour in a blog of a more “serious” nature too.

      Thanks, and hope to see you here again!
      Tom

  5. Useful, engaging and human. I enjoyed this post very much! Of the three styles, I’d have to say mine is Personality. I don’t try to write that way, it’s just how it comes out. I can’t help it.

    But I have fun and hope others find my posts encouraging. And it has to flow. Otherwise it’s just drudgery, and who can sustain that?

    Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send this to friend