Developing your brand voice
You will learn
- How to define your brand personality
- Ways of telling your brand story
- Ideas for creating a brand voice chart
Developing your brand voice is something that’s going to take time and a lot of tweaking to get right. You’ll need to carefully consider what kind of style you want to put out into the world – is your business witty, friendly, cheeky or more professional?
Define your personality
Choose a few words that best describe the voice that you want your brand to speak with to help give you a sense of the tone you’re going for. Are you loud and bold, or chatty and informative? Think of your brand as a person, how do you imagine that person talks, thinks and acts? Is it someone you’d want to spent time with? If the answer to that is no, you might want to head back to the drawing board.
Research your audience
Take a look at how your target audience are speaking to each other online and tailor your tone to their style. If you can’t appeal to them, they won’t be interested in learning more about your brand or buying from you. See what kinds of posts they’re interacting with online to help judge what styles and content they’re interested in.
You could event try A/B testing slightly altered tones of voice in your marketing to see which get the biggest response from your customers. Small tweaks like these are really helpful to a brand as they’re not completely changing the overall tone, they’re just working towards making a stronger and more appealing voice for your customers.
Tell a story
People respond to people, and if you can tell a story in your messages you’re going to get more of a response than simply pushing sales. Weave stories into your blogs, social media posts and website content to hold attention and create an emotional response in your reader. Remember, brand storytelling is anything that has a clear beginning, middle and end. Things like case studies, hypothetical situations, personal anecdotes, or the history of your business are all great stories to share with your audience.
Create a brand voice chart
Once you’ve got a good idea for what you want your brand voice to be, spend a little time creating a voice chart. It’ll be a handy reference tool you can refer back to when you are writing to help keep your tone consistent. Divide your chart into four columns:
- Voice characteristic – what word do you associate with your brand: passionate, witty, authentic, friendly…?
- Description – explain a little more about what that word means in the context of your brand.
- Do – what should you do in your writing to embody this characteristic?
- Don’t – what pitfalls should you avoid when using this characteristic in your writing?
Your brand voice is how you communicate with your audience and it will have a big impact on the way in which your customers think and feel about your business. If you’re not able to speak to your target market in a way that appeals to them or that makes your business stand out in the crowded marketplace then you’re going to struggle to make a lasting impression and generate repeat custom. Think of your brand as having a personality to help you identify the right tone and create a brand voice chart to make sure it stays consistent throughout all your communications.