On Tuesday, 6 June, 2023, we (TAMLO) held a seminar for writers in Osaka. The subject was "Career Advancement through B2B Writing: Work that Contributes to Business Growth”. Despite the rainy weather, participants came from as far away as Tokyo, Kagoshima, and Fukuoka, reminding us once again of the high demand for B2B writing. Here is a report on the day's events.
What is B2B writing? How does it differ from B2C writing?
For B2B companies, content marketing is an indispensable growth strategy. However, there is a shortage of B2B writers. With this in mind, we held our first face-to-face seminar in many years. Yutaka Okoshi, a member of "Team Pascal", a group of science writers, and a prolific B2B writer, was our guest speaker.
The participants ranged from experienced B2B writers to those who wanted to take this opportunity to learn, with a wide variety of expertise. The seminar began with a basic explanation of what B2B writing is and how it differs from B2C writing, followed by specific case studies to give participants an idea of the real work of a B2B writer.
We laid out the differences between B2B and B2C writing into five categories: writing skills, content creation, content strategy, content management and optimisation, and customer relations and branding. Many participants nodded along and took notes as we explained the features of B2B writing, citing differences between the two, such as the need for technical writing that uses appropriate industry and technical terms and the importance of creating content that solves business issues.
What to keep in mind as a B2B writer
During the discussion between Okoshi and Yuichi Ishino, founder and director of TAMLO, they talked about the importance of preparing before interviews, how to work with provided materials, what to keep in mind when interviewing and writing, and how to improve one’s skills. Many participants seemed to sympathise with the difficulty of "moderation" in B2B writing, such as how many technical terms to include and to what degree they should be broken down.
According to Okoshi, the advantage of having writers that can do B2B writing is that they can acquire highly specialised knowledge and experience, which can then be applied to their next job. He also emphasised the importance of rhythm, questioning, and the driving force behind the writing that keeps the reader engaged.
Here is a snippet from the Q&A session that followed.
Q. B2B writers often don't get credited for their work, so how does one build a resume?
A. One way is to join a network of editors. Editors introduce excellent writers to each other.
Q. How much research do you do when you cover a company?
A. I make sure to read the mid-term management plans of the companies I cover. While the news and newspapers may provide only fragmentary information, the mid-term management plan clearly shows where the company is focusing its efforts and where its strengths lie.
We hope that the seminar and case studies helped the participants to further deepen their understanding of B2B writing.
After the discussion, we held a reception. It was a great time for those who already knew each other as well as those who were just getting to know each other. Here are some of the comments we received from the participants.
- This was my first opportunity to learn about B2B writing. It was very interesting.
- I am very interested in B2B writing. I appreciate that the content covered everything from basic information to the latest case studies, and I was able to understand the key information in a short amount of time.
- I participated because I would like to do SDG-related writing work, and I thought that I might be able to find more projects if I improve my writing skills. I would like to join again next time if my schedule permits. Thank you very much!
- I am very grateful for the timing of the seminar, as I was just thinking about getting serious about B2B writing. It reminded me of the joy I felt when I was studying and interviewing science researchers for a university PR magazine. I would like to be a B2B writer when the opportunity arises.
The event wrapped up with the enthusiasm unique to face-to-face events, with some participants expressing a desire to hear more about specific B2B writing techniques and how to improve their skills. As the organiser, it was a valuable day with many encounters and insights. Thank you very much to everyone who participated.
TAMLO is always looking for external partners (writers and editors). If you are interested, please contact us through our website.