Please let me introduce myself.
My name is Rob Warren. My wife and I own Load Bearing Creative, and the voice you read here on this blog is generally (but not always) mine. I’m a technical writer and a tech marketing guy. Most of the time, I work in a home office, writing white papers and case studies, while watching our wiggly Lab out in the back yard chasing birds.
There are human beings on the other side of the keyboard. And they believe in stuff.
For most of us, I think, there’s a natural inclination when we write about our businesses to avoid injecting personal sentiment into our working words. Some of that falls under the category of “being professional”, I suppose, but the older I get and the longer I work in this field, the more I suspect it’s little more than risk aversion.
We’re all afraid that some incredible client is just waiting out there to shower us with riches, but will shun us at the last moment because – gasp – they have discovered some personal bone of contention. So we hedge and avoid and back away and stick to the bullets.
Thing is, I don’t think we can get away with that anymore. Not in the social media age.
Twitter really did change everything. It created a real time social response blizzard that makes prepackaged, “professional” messaging get stale VERY quickly. Yeah, it (and often does) reward the kneejerk reaction. But it also rewards honest, heartfelt reaction.
(Incidentally, this isn’t intended as a Twitter plug. Social media is evolving very fast, and no doubt Twitter will soon be replaced by something else. But that “something else” will undoubtedly also be something that rides on real time reaction, probably even more so.)
If you’re going to keep your business relevant in that 21st century messaging environment, being professional isn’t enough. You can’t hide behind passive tense and risk avoidance anymore. You have to stake a claim somewhere and actually make your business stand for something other than itself.
That’s not to say that your business should be a political platform. It can be, certainly. But your readers do want to know that you care about something other than your products and their money. Do you?
We at LBC strongly believe in a number of causes and issues. In the spirit of full disclosure, here are the big ones.
Foster kids. One of the greatest challenges our society faces today is in lifting kids from poverty and crisis, and making sure they get the opportunities they need to succeed as healthy, happy human beings. We participate in, support, and contribute to CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates), a nonprofit organization that works to ensure that the interests of foster kids are fully represented in the court of law. We’re big believers in the mission of CASA.
STEM education. Related to the above, we believe that every kid should have ample educational opportunities to discover and follow their talents, intelligence, and passions. This is particularly true in the STEM arena. Children should have the ability and resources to explore, build, create, and imagine, and we’re happy to advance that cause.
Humanitarian assistance. I have a background with the American Red Cross, and my wife has a background with the Salvation Army. People out there need help. They’re caught in situations that they did not create and cannot escape without the compassionate assistance of others. We believe in and contribute to these causes as critical efforts to promote individual worth, stable families, and healthy societies.
Animal causes. Our four-legged friends are often also in uniquely vulnerable situations that place them at great risk of abuse, neglect, and harm. We support Humane Society causes and various efforts to ensure that animals everywhere can live their lives in safety and with attentive, compassionate human care.
There are plenty of other issues and causes that we believe in, but those are the primary ones. Now you know who we are.
So who are you? Introduce yourself.
We – and your customers – would surely like to know more about you.