Business Writing

Write for Your Audience

Know who your audience is and write for it.

Knowing who you are writing for will help you choose:

  • The appropriate vocabulary—you will know if they understand your business’s jargon or not. If there’s a chance they won’t understand it, don’t use it
  • To avoid words that put up barriers and use those that are clear and simple to understand: use ‘make unclear’ not ‘obfuscate’, ‘the item I mentioned in the previous paragraph’ not the ‘aforementioned’
  • The right tone—you can be familiar with your coworkers, but if you’re writing to a board member or a client, you may want to be more formal. ‘Good morning’ rather than ‘hi’

Knowing who you are writing to and for goes hand-in-hand with identifying your reasons for writing. Keep who and why in mind and you will be able to engage your readers and keep them reading.