In getting your message out in the Wild Wild West, in the Internet age, it’s important to not only have great content, but also have a style which can engage your readers.
For my analysis, I chose the renewable energy website CleanTechnica.com, which ranks as one of the world’s top cleantech websites globally.
With thousands of readers daily, and ranked as the number one cleantech website globally by Quantcast.com and Compete.com, CleanTechnica in itself has become a brand. Launched in 2008, this blog has gained a following. It’s been referenced by major media outlets, including: MSN, Washington Post, and Reuters. CleanTechnica.com, and was a trailblazer in helping to establish cleantech media in the late 2000’s.
CleanTechnica covers all sorts of renewable energies, including: wind, solar, clean transportation, and energy efficiency. It has two goals.
Inspire people and help them to take cleantech action in their lives;
Share correct information on cleantech, including debunking widespread myths and horrible coverage in the mass media.
While it attracts many academics, and cleantech enthusiasts, like myself, CleanTecnica’s communication style makes it easy for readers to understand. Trying to communicate renewable energy and cleantech prior to Web 2.0 was a challenge. If you wanted to get your message out, you had limited Internet opportunities, or go through mainstream media. After all, renewable energy and cleantech is still young now. This is why much of why many within mainstream media have done a poor job communicating about the benefits of these industries. In the past, information relating to these industries were only confined to tech geeks in the University science lab. Through blogs, and social networking outlets, social media helped blow it out of the water. In the past 10-15 years, social media has opened up research, and news stories within new media. Now the challenge was to find a communication style which can relate well to enthusiasts, academics, novices, and those with a casual interest. CleanTechnica has a nice balance in finding a communication style which pleases all bases.
In lesson one, we learned the importance putting personality in your voice, in business writing can provide a more human element. By allowing its writers to have a human voice within its writing, CleanTechnica pleases those causal readers, as well as the hard core techies.
Its owner and one of its writers, Zachary Shahan, adds lots of personality to his articles. For example, a recent article where he talks with Wang Chuanfu, the Chairman of Chinese electric vehicle manufacturer, BYD. His own personal voice comes out in this article. Shahan uses “I’s” often to give his analysis with his discussion with Chuanfu. Shahan is also very clear about discussing what BYD is (namely giving a detailed description of this company) and its chairman.
This personal style reflects well to entice not only tech nerds, but also the novices, and casual fans.