‘Times change’ is a very common saying. In truth, the times do not change by themselves. Technology changes the times and dictates the flow of history and business writing styles adapt as well. Gone are the days of owning a corner business and working on your craft.
Nowadays, you have layers upon layers of laws, conditions, globalization, and all other sorts of problems. As anyone from proessaywriting can tell you, you can’t just start putting pen to paper and writing something.
Using Different Business Writing Styles
As long as you have a business, you have to consider a special style of writing called “business writing”. To make things even more complicated, it can be split further into other sub-trends.
This distinction is not random, nor is it meant just to waste your time.
Business writing styles split off into categories, depending on the ultimate goal that is being pursued. Being aware of these divisions will make you more likely to pursue the correct choices when it comes for you to write your paper.
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1. Instructional Writing
“Who is my audience?”
This is the question that every writer must ask himself. This applies to more than simple business writing. All genres and business writing styles must organize around the necessity of the person reading.
When it comes to instructional writing, the audience is a person who needs instruction. The reader is completely or partly unaware of the subject matter. In this case, the language must be clear, simple, and concise. Also, try to avoid large walls of text.
There are no complex issues, as everything can be chopped down into something more manageable. Everything must be presented in the form of bite-sized chunks.
User Manuals must assume complete ignorance of the part of the reader. It should explain to the user how a product or a service is used. It has become standard practice to have a user manual, and all products have them.
Depending on who you ask, manuals can be considered a subset of the technical writing field.
Specifications are a bit different from user manuals. Every guy on the street will not be able to read or implement specs. It is assumed that the reader knows what he is doing, but is unfamiliar with this particular process.
Specs are great for the inside distribution of updates in large companies such as multinational corporations. You are giving info in a language that everyone already knows how to read.
The final subset of business instructional writing is the business memo. Unlike specifications, business memos are shorter. They are also made to be distributed company-wide, in the context of larger corporations.
2. Informational Writing
You don’t have to look far to find business writing styles full of mountains of dull text. While instructional writing ultimately deals with guiding action, informational writing presents…well… information.
It can get very dry, especially when looking over numbers, stats, or records. Yet, this type of info is essential for business. Large corporations are getting to be the size of small countries with the budgets to match.
People from across the planet work for them and each region is split into multi-layered divisions. This gets complicated very fast, and the only way to communicate and see things as a total is to read the numbers and informational documents.
Probably the most common incarnation of informational writing is the classic business report. Reports are placed on the tables of people who call the shots and make decisions. Without these reports, the leaders will be blind and the executive branch of a company will be made more inefficient.
Business reports can reflect the work done so far, pass on tech or business info, log certain events, present plans, recommend actions, or act as the primary means of memory for the firm.
Financial business reports, just like their names suggest, focus on the financial evolution during a specified timeframe. This includes financial quarters, Q1 & Q2, and a Year To Date view.
Minutes reports are a subset of business reporting that focuses on the meeting themselves. They log the steps of a specific meeting. In the future, readers can look over the decisions, discussions, attendees, and assignments.
3. Persuasive Writing
When businesses were more of a one-man show, the owner could not afford to lack people skills. Businesspeople were perceived as charming and persuasive by default, as they would not survive otherwise.
Nowadays, things are more specialized and business writing styles are more complex. You can afford to have uncharismatic, dry people working in the background, and concentrate all of the creative and persuasive ones in the marketing and sales departments.
It is very hard to teach this type of business writing style, given that it involves a human element. There are step-by-step instructions, but a certain amount of intuition will be involved.
It can be said that fundamentally, your sales pitches must relay accurate information. You have to tell the truth, and put forward raw facts. But you also have to construct an argument and make it persuasive.
Why is your business worthy of the reader’s patronage? Surely, others offer similar value.
Just like the other types of writing, persuasive writing can be split into sub-categories.
The proposal is a more professional and technical pitch. It will present your product, describe your service, alongside info such as the benefits, the project steps, and the cost. Do not simply dump these stats on the page, and construct an argument.
Other types in press releases and email campaigns. Each of these has specific rules and a niche language.
4. Transactional Writing
This is another dry form of communication. Usually, the everyday notices and emails within a company will be considered part of this category.
A broad range of notifications can fit here. From termination notices to vacation updates, invoices, business letters, and so on.
There isn’t much to be said about each of them without getting into the weeds. But if you are tasked with the output of such a communication, try to compact as much info in the allotted space, and make it as clear as possible.
Business writing styles are much more formalized than they used to be. Every statement or communication has some rules and strings attached. It is a language specifically spoken by the private sphere. It is also shorthand for “I know what I’m doing”.