Note: you can listen to this episode above or load it up in iTunes.

How to Use Your Writing to Build Relationships and Build Your Brand

Today’s episode is all about using your writing to build relationships and your brand. It’s a special interview with Beth Dunn, Product Editor-in-Chief at HubSpot. In today’s podcast episode, Beth shares really practical tips and strategies you can use for helping you sound more human in the way you write your blog content.

Beth Dunn, 10 Writing Tips to Help You Sound More Human, ProBlogger Podcast Episode

In This Episode

You can listen to today’s episode above or in iTunes or Stitcher (where we’d also LOVE to get your reviews on those platforms if you have a moment). In today’s episode:

  • Why every word you choose affects how you are perceived by others
  • 10 things you can do to make sure your writing portrays exactly what you want it to say
  • How to write to show that you are human
  • How to write to show that you are honest and trustworthy
  • How to make your readers excited
  • How to approach acronyms and formal language
  • How to make sure mistakes don’t slip through
  • Why a style guide can be so powerful in improving your writing
  • How to find an editor
  • How to tap into the power of pronouns
  • The power of imagining your reader in a really bad mood
  • How to convey humour without accidentally coming across as snarky or sarcastic

Further Reading and Resources for How to Use Your Writing to Build Relationships and Build Your Brand

How to be a writing god:

How to fix your writing:

More writing tips and resources from Beth:

You can connect with Beth and more of her writing at:

How did you go with today’s episode?

What did you learn from today’s episode? Are you already using some of Beth’s strategies? Which ones will you try next? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

Finally, if you have a moment we’d love to get your feedback on the ProBlogger Podcast with this short survey which will help us plan future episodes.

  • Congrats on your first interview Darren! This was a really helpful episode for us at Man of Many on how to sound more human. We particularly struggle when we write our post headlines or titles, often sticking with the standard (sometimes boring) “10 Top XXX” or “10 Best XXX” which can get monotonous. Beth had some great tips on how to get our readers more excited. Looking forward to building on her advice in using and thinking about each individual word to help enhance our brand as a blog. – Somewhat ironically, I think the podcast interview also came across a lot more natural and more human Darren as you spoke off-cuff around the struggles of writing. Keep up the great work!

    • Thanks so much Scott – enjoyed doing this one and would like to do more!

  • Great interview. I put her tips to use immediately and it made a tremendous difference. Wonderful choice for your first interview.

  • Great interview. One other way to really get a feel of your article is to read it out loud, AND record it.

  • Stephanie Martel

    Just curious–do you think you’ll ever offer the transcript with these interviews? It’s hard to listen sometimes and I would love to glean some info from these podcasts!

    • It seems to be a regular request – considering it.

  • Vicky Lightner Cox

    Ugh Darren! I’m so behind in listening to podcasts, but this was so helpful I have to listen to it again! Oops, I broke the snarky advice, but at least I used contractions.

    • The podcasts will be here forever Vicky so take your time. Glad you enjoyed this one 🙂 (lucky nothing was said about smiley faces).

  • Hi Darren,

    The imagining your reader in a really bad mood is freaking brilliant. I love it and I use this exact method to drill home my point and to connect with my audience. I sometimes fall into my comfort zone because I am living a pretty neat life so I forget what it was like to be a newbie, struggling blogger. In those moments I relax, slow down, and picture myself during those early days. Or I picture myself as a person who left a frustrating comment, as I see many of these from day to day on top blogs.

    I take that attitude into writing my blog posts, feeling the pained vibe, then I share my insights into tackling these struggles through my personal experiences with doing what has worked, and more importantly, with avoiding what didn’t work.

    The problem is this: most bloggers are in a rush. Goodness knows I’ve been and I still sprint through writing sometimes. I feel that working on your mindset is the easiest, most freeing way to slow down, to calm down and to patiently create an inspired, empathetic piece. Even though I am huge on writing for myself to feel my passion and to put out my best work I am also really, really big on connecting to my audience because without my audience I am writing a diary. No way around that one. If I can imagine myself in my audience’s shows, especially if I see and feel them in one of their bad moods, I can create a post from a compassionate, helpful, inspired space which makes folks see me in a different light.

    Many folks feel I am lucky or blessed or talented or whatever, to blog from paradise, but I STILL go through struggles from time to time because I am a human being having a human experience. Me feeling my current day struggles – amid my current day “success” – is the way to connect with my readers quickly and easily, and to show them that not all flows to me easily, and to show my beloved readers that I am no machine, even if I appear to be.

    As for the robotic wording point in the podcast, God knows I am not guilty of that. I err on the side of…..a grammatical nightmare……to be human, real, authentic and to connect with my readers in a conversational tone. I have spoken to a few lawyers turned bloggers recently and the thing they struggle with is being too formal, stiff and stodgy. I thank the lucky stars I never wrote from a legal space because I don’t have the hang ups which hold these folks back, because these hang ups prevent them from connecting with their audience. Again, I am a bit out there, and super informal, but my audience loves how I write because my style is a massive change up to most of the blogs out there, especially blogging tips blog.

    I like the selling tension tip. I cut through it through humor, to help me detach from outcomes. Really, are we doing this for the money? Hell no. We’re blogging for fun. If you focus on the fun and have fun and let go money outcomes a bit you will cut through the tension and let your words flow naturally. Keep writing how you write when it comes time to make your call to action and you will do just fine on the blogging income side of things. Keep on being natural, writing in your voice, and make your call in the same informal, clear, fun space, and you’ll knife through the selling tension that most bloggers suffer from.

    As for exciting (excited), the direct way to convey excitement is to feel the excitement in your being BUT to do it from a relaxed space. Totally chill energy, and if you allow that energy to flow through your words you won’t over compensate. You’ll sound natural. You’ll be relaxed. You’ll get your excited point across without trying so darn hard.

    Guys, awesome podcast. Thanks for sharing with us.


  • What if you talk using those big words naturally? I read a fair amount and tend to use the 25 cent words in my speech, and so my writing reflects that.

  • Sharon

    Having said I prefer no interviews, I loved this one. Beth Dunn is inspiring. Great practical tips. Thanks Darren and Beth

  • Paul Ebbage

    how good was Beth! thanks. Sooo good. great advice in regard to the voice you need to build your brand. thanks again

  • Angela Gonzalez

    Great episode. Thank you. I appreciated the interview and insights shared by you and Beth. Thanks for sharing the list of tips too that you outlined in the episode.

  • Julie McRitchie

    Hey Darren and Beth,
    Thank you for all your tips and 10 clear actionable to dos. Common sense really once you think about it but we also know, common sense isn’t so common.