Business writing is useful in various contexts, but its primary purpose is to receive a business response. In other words, it is writing that deals with business, whether it’s reaching out to customers or employees, and getting a response back relevant to whatever business the writing deals with. A piece of business writing must be purposeful, impactful, and straight to the point.
But because of the nature of this writing, it can turn out pretty dry. Converting boring business writing into something inspiring and exciting isn’t always the most exciting or easiest task. However, it is a must if you need your business writing to stand out and elicit those positive business responses.
Let’s look at some ways you can turn different types of business writing into inspiring reads.
Different Forms of Business Writing
Before diving into how to turn around your business writing, let’s look at the most common types of business writing. Knowing what kind of document it is will help you with its style.
As the name suggests, instructional writing provides the end-user with the information they need to run or operate a piece of equipment or product. It is usually factual and may have lots of jargon, depending on the product. Examples that fall under this category include memos, user manuals, and product specifications.
The tone of persuasive writing is usually salesy, as it pushes a particular product or service. You also write in this style to develop a positive client relationship. In a nutshell, you are trying to convince the reader to see your way on a specific topic and provide information about a product simultaneously. Examples in this category include press releases, proposals, and sales emails.
This kind of writing does not necessarily require a response but is usually done to collect data and record information accurately and precisely. Informational writing often comes in the form of reports, minutes, and financials of a company.
Everyday business communication falls under this bracket since you would use it to convey news impacting a business or an individual employee. Human resources uses this kind of writing frequently for dismissal notices, meeting requests, and general emails.
Changing Up Your Business Writing Tone
Now that we have looked at the most common forms of business writing, let’s get into how you can turn your dull and uninspiring document into something interesting.
If ever there was a golden rule to business writing, it is to avoid jargon. Some language that is common in a certain line of business may not be so common to others. This could potentially put off your new or existing customers.
Try to use everyday, professional terms to keep your reader roped in at all times. Jargon may sometimes sound meaningless or even ridiculous. Stick to plain language, and you can almost bet on a better response.
Being Professional vs. Formal
Being too formal can come off as stiff. By cutting out formality and instead employing professionalism, you can connect more with your audience without being overly familiar.
You can address people by their actual names without needing to throw in their titles. Additionally, do not confuse being professional with being informal. Avoid using jokes, nicknames, or even passing along information that could be deemed as gossip in your writing in the name of avoiding formality.
As always, less is more, and this could not be truer in this context. More and more, people take less time to read through a wordy email or manual and will usually just skim through the document to get the information they are looking for. Use fewer words to convey information.
A long document does not mean you captured everything you needed to say. You can say just as much with a few well-chosen words. You’d be amazed at how many business writing courses there are to help you polish this skill.
Nothing takes away your credibility more than a glaring typo. In fact, some readers may not finish reading because of a typo; it may change their positive response to a negative one. To avoid this, give yourself time to go over your work before submitting it.
In fact, walking away from what you have just written and then giving it another look in a few minutes could be the difference between missing typos and having none at all. Proofreading also helps to get rid of ambiguous statements that will do nothing for your intended purpose.
Put Your Personality to Work
If you have been writing for a while, you know that writing is an art form. Forget about templates. Write and put some of yourself into your writing. While it is acceptable to stick to writing rules such as format and specified guidelines, your words should be your own.
How you arrange those words to convey your message is entirely up to you. Your passion for writing will find its way into your message. Don’t hold back. As long as you keep to a professional tone, your personality will help make your writing an inspiring piece each time.
Finally, a great piece of business writing will not fulfill its intended job if it does not have an inspiring call to action. Encourage your audience to consider what they’ve read with powerful parting words. Make them feel that they need to be part of what you are writing about or that they need to sign up for or buy your product.
Take charge from the start of your writing to the end to ensure that the decision the reader makes is not entirely up to them. Be the expert and foster trust, passion, and a reason.
The Bottom Line
With these few tricks, you are well on your way to adding some life to your business writing. There are tons of ways to inspire your readers but start here with the basics. We can almost bet that your emails, reports, and even press releases will read differently from now on.