Can You Be A Corporate Blogger Without Losing Yourself?

To succeed with corporate blogging, bloggers must always keep in mind that it’s a delicate balance between expressing yourself and your business’s values. Likely, sometimes the values of your company aren’t your values. The question is: Should corporate bloggers be allowed to express views that differ from corporate ideologies, or should they adhere to their company’s rhetoric without question?

Balancing Corporate Blogging

There is a sweet spot in which bloggers can both support the company and remain true to themselves. We have worked hard to achieve this balance in our organization. Our readers must understand that I am passionate about ethical search engine optimization, and not just because our company has a Code of Ethics. They also know I am open to thoughtful discussions and debates, even if there are disagreements with the viewpoints expressed by Bruce Clay. Corporate bloggers need to learn how to tread this fine line.

The issue is ultimately one of authenticity. Will you stand up for what you believe in and earn the trust of your readers or will you simply repeat corporate doctrine? Readers don’t visit our blog for advice on search engine optimization. If this were the case, readers would consult our comprehensive search engine marketing methodology. They come to us for thought-provoking, genuine content. This is our job.

After blogging for Bruce Clay, Inc., for almost two and a quarter years, I’ve come to realize that my success as a company blogger depends on two things: (a) whether I believe in the company for which I work, and (b), whether the company believes in me. Both of these factors are present at my current position. I am privileged to be able to write about SEO topics that are important for both me and the organization.

During my conversations with other bloggers in the industry, I learned that not everyone is in the same situation.

Many corporations are hesitant to allow bloggers to voice divergent opinions because they fear presenting a fragmented message. This approach is outdated. We are no longer bound by rigid organizational stances or perspectives. While companies may strive to achieve a certain way of doing things it is important to acknowledge that dissent within an organization can coexist. People in a company have different perspectives, react differently to situations, and want different outcomes. Diverse opinions and views can be beneficial to companies.

There are, of course, limits. If you represent Bruce Clay, Inc., then promoting black hat SEO would be against the core principles of your organization. Discussions about different tactics and ideas are encouraged. Bruce Clay may not yet fully endorse my post on Twitter as a tool for social media campaigns. I know I am free to do this. Bruce will listen to my arguments if they are convincing.

You don’t have to give up your voice or agenda when you become a corporate blogger. What value do you provide to your audience if not?

It is difficult to navigate the corporate blogging landscape, as you must simultaneously please your audience, satisfy your superiors, and stay true to yourself.

It is important to me that I represent Bruce Clay, Inc. without losing my individuality. I refuse to argue in favor or against anything just because it is contrary to our beliefs. The search engine optimization industry is a place for exploration and discussion. Bruce Clay may be able to respect this point of view, but I am aware that certain companies suffocate bloggers with legal restrictions and force them to use industry jargon to sell their products. Your role is questioned if you are not allowed to blog authentically.

This lesson applies to corporations. You should reevaluate hiring practices if you are not selecting individuals who share the same beliefs, aspirations, or at least a similar direction. Trusting your employees will lead to success. Hiring a blog while suppressing the blogger’s authenticity is the quickest way to create a false experience for your customers.

Corporate blogs require a careful balance to maintain your own identity while representing your organization. It is important to find the sweet spot where your opinions can be expressed while still contributing to company objectives. Diversity and open dialogue can help a company to be more authentic and provide a better experience for both readers and customers. 

Discover the balance between corporate values and personal authenticity in blogging—let our ethical SEO expertise guide your journey to an authentic online presence today. Contact us

FAQ: How can I authentically navigate the corporate blogging landscape while staying true to my company’s values?

Corporate blogging has become a cornerstone for businesses aiming to establish a robust online presence. Navigating this landscape authentically while remaining true to your company’s values requires a strategic approach and a keen understanding of your audience. Let’s delve into some key insights to help you effectively navigate the corporate blogging terrain.

  1. Define Your Brand Voice:

   One of the crucial aspects of authentic corporate blogging is establishing a consistent brand voice. Your brand voice should reflect your company’s values and resonate with your target audience. Whether it’s a formal tone or a more casual approach, maintaining consistency enhances your brand’s authenticity and fosters a stronger connection with readers.

  1. Craft Relevant and Engaging Content:

   To capture the attention of your audience, focus on creating content that adds value. Understand the buyer intent search terms associated with your industry and incorporate them seamlessly into your articles. This not only boosts your search engine visibility but also ensures your content aligns with what your audience is actively searching for.

  1. Transparency Builds Trust:

   Authenticity is synonymous with transparency. Be open about your company’s mission, values, and even challenges. Sharing real stories and experiences can humanize your brand, fostering a deeper connection with your audience. This transparency builds trust, a cornerstone of authentic corporate blogging.

  1. Stay Informed About Industry Trends:

   The digital landscape evolves rapidly, and staying current with industry trends is paramount. Regularly update your content to reflect the latest developments in your field. This not only positions your company as an industry authority but also demonstrates your commitment to providing up-to-date and relevant information.

  1. Engage With Your Audience:

   Authenticity is a two-way street. Actively engage with your audience through comments, social media, and other platforms. Respond to feedback, questions, and concerns promptly. This not only strengthens your relationship with your audience but also provides valuable insights that can shape your future content.Navigating the corporate blogging landscape authentically requires dedication, a clear understanding of your brand, and a commitment to delivering valuable content. By incorporating these insights into your strategy, you can forge a genuine connection with your audience while staying true to your company’s values.

Step-by-Step Guide: Navigating Corporate Blogging Authentically

  1. Define Your Brand Voice:

   Clearly articulate your brand’s personality and tone to establish a consistent voice across all communication channels.

  1. Craft Relevant Content:

   Identify buyer intent search terms and seamlessly integrate them into your articles to enhance search engine visibility.

  1. Transparency is Key:

   Be open about your company’s mission, values, and challenges. Share real stories and experiences to humanize your brand.

  1. Stay Informed:

   Keep abreast of industry trends and update your content regularly to showcase your company as an industry authority.

  1. Engage With Your Audience:

   Actively respond to comments, questions, and feedback on various platforms to build a strong and interactive online community.

By following these steps, you can authentically navigate the corporate blogging landscape while staying true to your company’s values.

Successful corporate blogging hinges on the delicate balance of authenticity and strategic engagement. By embracing your brand’s unique voice, consistently delivering valuable content, and fostering transparent communication, you can navigate the digital landscape while staying true to your company’s core values.

This article was updated on December 20, 2023.  

Lisa Barone is a writer, content marketer & VP of strategy at Overit Media. She's also a very active Twitterer, much to the dismay of the rest of the world.

See Lisa's author page for links to connect on social media.

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7 Replies to “Can You Be A Corporate Blogger Without Losing Yourself?”


“Obviously there’s a line to be drawn. If you’re Bruce Clay, Inc., you don’t want a blogger advocating black hat search engine optimization because that violates the core of what you do. But I don’t see the harm in talking about different tactics.”

you dont see the harm in talking about differnt tactics” yet you got all mad because there were some blackhat tactics at smx advanced. pretty hipocritical

In my little piece of the world, I don’t know if I would label you as a corporate blogger.
When I think of corporate, I think of (probably) a public company, with at least a thousand employees, etc. I think you’re a great blogger for a business, but corporate blogging (again, IMO) is much different.
Some of my corporate friends say that posts need to go through Marketing, PR, etc., before they even go online. That’s very different than what you do. In some of those cases (probably most of them), I think it’s almost impossible NOT to lose yourself.

“Maybe I want to write a post about using Twitter for your social media campaign, something Bruce may not be totally sold on just yet”.

That’s my problem with individual first, company second blogging. From a customer’s perspective, what kind of SEO would Bruce Clay do for my site? If I’m a fan of the blog, I want whatever Lisa would do, but is that the same thing Bruce would do? Or is Bruce Clay really a black hat? I don’t know, because I’m talking to an individual vs a company voice.

Personally, I don’t like reading, and subscribe to very few company first individual second blogs – but when I’m looking for solid information I can trust about a product or service, I want to know what the company has to say, officially.

Well said. But there’s one thing that struck me as I read your post. You wrote:
“I’ve learned that the only way I can be successful blogging for a company is if (a) I believe in the company I work for and (b) the company believes in me.”
I would respectfully add:
C) My customers/clients believe in me.
Legal doesn’t have to be an adversary. It’s been a wonderful process talking with Blog Council members and seeing how they’ve dealt with that situation. To be successful, almost all mention that they got Legal on board from the beginning with education, training, and a lot of communication.
Let’s be frank — the issues involved aren’t trivial to a billion dollar corporation. But they also aren’t extraordinarily difficult to resolve, either. Disclosure, for example, seems difficult at first, but it is actually easy to do well.
I am a Blog Council employee and this is my personal opinion.

Interesting subject. I’ve always felt you make it look very easy Lisa, much easier than it really is to represent a company while at the same time expressing your opinions.

I suspect the company culture and size has a great deal to do with a writer’s ability as a blogger to express herself or himself. In my last company, a major corporation in the mortgage industry, I launched a blog on a microsite in which the goal was to share helpful information for home loan shoppers and people interested in credit.

Our blog writer unfortunately had little (ok, no) ability to express herself, because the Corporate policy was to only allow our Public Relations area to represent the voice of our corporation, including any written communications (such as our little blog) that were made available to the public at large. The concern was there was a whole slew of Federal, State and local legislation our company had to comply with, and thus the sensitivity over public information. All of our material for the blog had to be written in advance, pre-approved by several legal areas as well as our PR department, prior to being posted. Helpful information? Hopefully! Free expression? No!

Clearly, a corporate culture will impact a writer’s ability for free expression and opinions. I’m just glad that Bruce Clay Inc. allows your personality to have a place with Bruce’s, shall we say um, Large personality.

Blogs are a conversational medium. The question is, then, when I read your corporate blog, do I want to talk to a person or a corporation?
It’s a complex question, and I think the answer isn’t entirely one or the other. As a blogger, people value communicating with you because of your personal voice. The fact of the matter, though, is that they may only be approaching you in the first place because you’re a spokesperson for a company.
In your case, Lisa, your audience is probably a mix. I know I respond because I like the content here; I’m not responding out of an interest in Bruce Clay, Inc. For other corporate bloggers, however, the fact that they’re tied to their companies may have a lot to do with their readership.
I’d say, then, that breaking from company voice is a matter of what kind of readers your blog attracts. If they’re reading because you’re the voice of your company, it may pay to understand and reinforce the company doctrine. If, on the other hand, they read because of your content without regard to your company, dissention isn’t as damaging.
Are your readers customers? Are your customers readers? The clearer the split between the two, I think, the more company doctrine can take a back seat.

“For me, it’s really important that I’m able to represent Bruce Clay, Inc. while still holding on to who I am.”

Lisa, I believe you are of the few that have successfully shared your voice and personality online while maintaining representation of the company you work for.

In fact, when I speak to health care audiences on the importance of blogging and being active online, I often refer to you as an example.

While a personality like yours could potentially ruffle a corporate feather or two, my mind says Bruce Clay Inc. is a progressive company because they not only allow you your voice, it appears they have your back as well.

There is no denying the passion you express for the industry you work in and that’s an exceptional quality to have.


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