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How to Do B2B Writing Right

You’d never accuse business-to-business (B2B) writing for being effortless or easy to do. And in a world now flush with more than 4.27 billion pages of digital writing, there’s the added complication of cutting through the clutter.

You walk a fine line with B2B writing — it must be clear, concise, and yet friendly and easy to read. Imbuing your pieces with a human touch can also help readers engage with your brand.

Sound impossible? Not quite. And contrary to popular belief, it’s a skill that can be learned. 

If you’re willing to practice and try new things, you too can discover how to do B2B writing right.

But First — What Is B2B Writing?

What Is B2B Writing?

B2B writing is exactly what it says on the tin. It’s written communication from one business to another, often illustrating how your business can help the other. 

Have a tool or service or product that you’ve built to make another company’s workflow easier, say a hosting platform or a CI/CD SaaS? You need to communicate the benefits of it with B2B writing.

Writing for B2B markets is noticeably different from business-to-consumer (B2C) writing in a handful of subtle but important ways:

  • You’re writing to a much more narrow demographic with more specialized knowledge
  • Your audience expects a certain level of knowledge from you
  • You can use more industry-specific jargon
  • Explanations of well-understood industry concepts can be skipped or kept brief

To illustrate this, here’s an example of B2B writing:

Example of B2B writing

Now here’s an example of B2C writing:

Example of B2C writing

Notice the tone shift. See how the audience has changed? You’re no longer speaking to business owners and decision makers. Instead, you’re chatting directly with consumers.

6 Types of B2B Writing

B2B writing is a rather broad term, but within that are several different types of writing. Each of these have a unique purpose and require different structures, approaches, and tones.

Let’s start with the most common type of business writing:

1. Blog Posts

Blog posts

A B2B blog post usually takes the form of an informational essay of between 500 to 2,000 words. You may want to post these on your own company’s website, or write guest posts about your services and products for informational sites (think online magazines or other companies’ blogs).

Depending on your brand voice and the voice of the website, you can perhaps indulge in a more informal tone. They must still bring some value to the table, though — 35% of blog readers skim content, so you must prove at the beginning why they should keep reading.

Most of you are probably familiar with what a B2C blog post looks like. When they’re well done, they can be witty and entertaining. Unfortunately, we’ve all seen the infamous cooking blog posts that ramble for hundreds of words before getting to the point the reader is there for: the recipe.

B2B blog posts especially need to get to the point. You’re writing 1,000+ words for a reason. What is it? 

Whether it’s a tutorial or discussing company philosophy, keep your theme at the forefront of the piece. Never let your readers wonder why they’re reading your blog post.

2. Email Marketing and Newsletters

Email marketing and newsletters

Effective email is short and sweet. B2B marketing emails in particular must have a tightly defined point, clearly expressing what you’d like the recipient to do after they read your message.

Should they use a coupon code? Sign up for a webinar? Join a beta? You should get this message across in 200 words or less.

Depending on the email and your brand voice, you can probably afford a witticism or two. But when in doubt, keep it straightforward. 

Readers will be skimming your email, so help them out with clear language and easy-to-understand formatting. By all means, use a visual, a photo, or graphic if it will help convey your CTA faster.

Newsletters can afford to be a bit lengthier and less tight than an email, especially if you’re an established voice of authority. But when in doubt, just address the why and how. Remember: you want your audience to want to listen to you.

3. Ebooks and Whitepapers

Ebooks and whitepapers

Whitepapers and ebooks explain the technical aspects of how your product or service would fit into a business structure. The length of either can be a bit ambiguous, but it honestly depends on what you want them to do. 

Do you have 40,000 words of opinion on open source as a philosophy? By all means, get your ebook nicely formatted with some good graphics. 

But a more likely scenario is that you want a handful of whitepapers for your sales team or prospective client to read.

First, anticipate the questions of your target demographic and answer their concerns clearly and professionally. This could cover a couple of pages (500 words) or range up to ten (around 2,500 words). 

You next need to consider whether your topic should be broken down into a series of whitepapers or an ebook.

For whitepapers especially, due to their technicality, the tone is professional and polished. Ebooks definitely have a more informal tone, but they’re likely still more formal than your typical brand voice.

4. Product Descriptions

Product descriptions

One of the biggest gaps I notice on tech company sites is a clear product description. You know what your product does, but does your target demographic? How quickly can they figure out what you do? 

Aside from your infographics, or your brand colors, or your landing page, make sure you have a short paragraph that reads:

“Amazing Product is a noun that verbs this pain point by specific description of integration with client workflow.”

That’s all a product description needs to be.

But I know this can be tricky, especially for startups.

You can start by asking yourself some questions:

  • What is your product? Don’t just describe it as a solution and call it quits.
  • What pain point does it address? And for whom?
  • How does it address the pain point? Is there specific lingo you should use?

And while we’re on the subject of lingo — don’t get too carried away with semantics and abbreviations. Asking readers to wade through buzzwords is also asking for a high bounce rate. 

Stick to your brand voice as you write your product descriptions, and try to be clear and transparent too.

5. Ghostwriting and Speeches

Ghostwriting and speeches

If you’re the primary writer for your company, chances are you’ll be asked to put someone else’s meaning into words. Your CTO may be the voice of authority on a topic, but they may not have the time or skill to get it down on paper.

Ghostwriting is a bit different from the other types of B2B writing we’ve covered so far. While the basic principles still apply — be straightforward, be clear, keep your point at the forefront of the piece — you also have to remember you’re taking on the voice of a particular person. 

If your CTO is pretty down to earth, don’t inject five-dollar words into a speech they’re going to deliver (or a blog post that will have their picture next to it). It’ll ring false, which can make the piece all but worthless. 

If you want to become a ghostwriter, let this be the first lesson you learn.

6. Press Releases

Press releases

As the name suggests, a press release is meant to release news to a press. You’ve raised a round of funding, you’re getting ready to release a new version, you’re discontinuing a legacy service — and you’d like to inform the industry.

There are guides galore on how to write a press release, and even more tools to help you distribute them. I won’t belabor the specs myself, but I will emphasize that structure matters here  — possibly more than any other piece of B2B writing I’ve touched on.

So please glance over a few tutorials, find the commonalities, and stick to them religiously.

The press release is an efficient formula for delivering information to people who will transfer it to another format, usually a news article or industry blog. These people are looking for specific info to craft their own writing, and the press release is designed to help them find it easily. Mess with the formatting too much, and your press release is going in the trash.

Tips for B2B Writing

As you’ve read so far, there are a lot of different structures that B2B writing can take. But no matter whether you’re writing a blog post, a whitepaper, or a webinar script, there are a handful of best practices to keep in mind.

Start with Your Goal

What do you want your audience to come away with? What do you want them to know by the end of your piece? Distill that into a single sentence and make sure that idea informs the rest of your writing. Write it down if you like, then keep it physically close while you craft the rest.

Think of a simple title like: “Readers should know how to create a Hugo theme.” Or cut it down even further to “How to Create a Hugo Theme.” You get my point.

Build an Outline

You probably don’t have to do this for an email or product description, but for long-form pieces, an outline is a huge time saver.

Consider how each step will get you closer to your goal, then build logical steps to make the piece a reality.

The brevity of an outline forces you to stay on point (or at least makes it easier to see when you’re wandering or when a point doesn’t fit easily with its neighbors). When you’re stuck in your draft, you can revisit your outline to see where you’re supposed to go next.

To be honest, writing an outline is my least favorite part of writing. But avoiding multiple revisions makes them worth it, hands down.

💡 Related: How to Create a Technical Content Plan

Write as You Speak

Remember how I said not to use five-dollar words for ghostwriting? The same applies to non-ghostwriting. If you try to write with vocabulary you don’t normally use in speech, you’re going to confuse your audience and push them to a more clearly-written piece (possibly written by a competitor).

Being professional in your tone doesn’t mean introducing unfamiliar styles of speech. Stick to avoiding profanity and questionable humor, and ta-da, you’re probably being very professional, actually.

Use Tools

If you could use some extra confidence in your writing, or you’d like a sort of digital editor to look over your shoulder, it’s never been easier to level up your own work. Tools like Grammarly and the Hemingway Editor can alert you to flowery language, repeated words, lengthy sentences, and incorrect vocabulary.

The best part? Many of these are free.

💡 Related: The Best Marketing Tools

Know How to Use Jargon

As I mentioned at the beginning of this article, a certain amount of jargon is expected for a B2B audience. But there’s no need to balloon your word count explaining things you expect your clientele to already know.

Don’t miss an opportunity to lead someone deeper into the industry because your writing is unnecessarily opaque. Will it take less than five words to offer a definition for a technical term on first use? Consider including it. 

That’s another good rule of thumb, by the way — define a term or acronym once (when you first use it in a piece), then never do it again. Trust me.

Develop a Voice

Humans like to read the words of other humans (we’re a self-absorbed species like that). In writing, voice is the concept of a writer’s style: their tone, their attitude, the vocabulary they use. Are they casual, are they intimate, are they funny, are they educational?

If you’re writing pieces that have your name next to them, consider how you want yourself to be perceived. Don’t feel bad if you can’t get there immediately! Voice is something personal and layered, and it’s constantly evolving, so give yourself time.

If you’re writing marketing material that’s meant to reflect the company and not a person, make sure you discuss what the brand voice is with stakeholders. Take time to get it synced up, too. Your audience can quickly tell if your blog has a different voice than your products page than your whitepapers.

Remember: nobody benefits from a murky brand image.

Have Material Proofread

Perhaps you don’t need a knock-down-drag-out edit, but typos are horrid little things that can hide in plain sight when you’re the one who wrote them. At the very least, get a second pair of eyes — human eyes, not just a digital editor — to glance over any public-facing B2B content. Everyone needs an editor, and the ones who say they don’t are lying.

Consider SEO

SEO data

Search engine optimization is its own entire thing, so I won’t cover too much ground on it here. Educate yourself on best practices for SEO, but keep in mind you’ll need to strike a happy medium between human readers and robots. 

In my humble opinion, leaning toward writing for a human audience rather than a bot can help you avoid SEO faux pas like keyword stuffing.

And please, think critically about the use of AI. Low-effort content won’t do you any favors, especially after Google’s massive spam update.

Learn to Love the Process

Nobody writes anything perfectly the first time theirs fingers hit the keys. Improvement happens with work, so:

  • Get into the habit of rereading your draft before sending it on down the pike; you’ll be amazed how much you can catch with a simple reread after letting a draft sit for a day.
  • Learn to self-edit. Enough said.
  • Revisit your outline and make sure you’ve hit all the points. Then, be sure you’ve hit them as solidly as you wanted to.
  • If you ask someone to proofread the piece, set your ego aside and carefully consider their feedback. Learn to embrace the learning and use it to fuel your writing in the future.

Where to Get Help with B2B Writing


The writing that surrounds your business is one of the first points of contact your audience will have with you. Polished, professional, and thoughtful B2B writing will go a long way toward a positive first impression.

Are you an authority in the industry? Can your business be trusted? What are your business ethics? How do you want to improve the world? 

Those questions are just the tip of the iceberg, whether or not you mean to convey them in your writing. 

Clearly, it’s important to make sure the writing attached to your company isn’t an afterthought. So if you’d prefer to offload the writing — I get it, it’s time-intensive and not enjoyable for everyone — you have a couple of options.

Let’s start with the most obvious:

B2B Freelance Writers

There are dozens of world-class freelancers out there who offer B2B content writing. Many of them also have prior experience working in the industries they write in — a major advantage for you and your team.

Freelance writers are also much cheaper than your average marketing agency. Just keep in mind they don’t always provide all the bells and whistles (like social media collateral, for example).

And a word of warning: not all B2B copywriters work at the same level. Some are less familiar with SEO best practices, while others aren’t familiar with your specific industry.

Do your homework before hiring an extension of your team. And if you don’t want to get this hands-on with a writer, you may want to consider a consultancy instead.

Marketing Consultancy

Marketing consultancies do exactly what you think: provide consultation on best B2B writing practices so you can implement them in your business. This is a fantastic choice for the busy marketer looking for support. It’s not as hands-off as working with an agency, and you still have more control than you do with freelancers.

But if you’re looking to delegate your B2B writing work, or if you’re trying to upscale your business writing tasks, consultancies may not offer the automation or instant results you want.

Which leads to a third option:

Marketing Agencies

The marketing agency is a powerhouse of support for the full circle of B2B marketing. Some of them specialize specifically in content writing, while others offer keyword research, topic ideation, and much more.

If you’re looking for marketing strategies like these, check out Draft.dev. We work with B2B writers who are subject matter experts to create blog posts, tutorials, and other content for technical audiences — now with social media collateral and video tutorials!

Meagan Shelley

By Meagan Shelley

Meagan is a professional writer in VA that specializes in content marketing, research, and SEO. If she's not helping people craft their own stories, she's working on some of her own. When she takes time to step away from the laptop, she enjoys hiking, farmer's markets, and occasional thru-hikes.