Your business’s tone of voice is effectively how you interact with your audience. It should steer your conversations with customers, your website content, your emails, your social media and pretty much each and every one of your communications. But how do you go about developing a tone of voice which truly suits your brand? Let’s take a look at some ways in which you can really find your voice.
Know your audience
The key to developing a pitch-perfect tone of voice is to tune into your audience. Who are they? What are they interested in? What bores them? This will help you ascertain how to engage with them. How you communicate with your audience is going to vary depending on who you’re talking to. For example, if your target demographic is aged 18-25, it’s likely that you’ll talk to them in a very different way than to people who are in their 60’s.
What do you stand for?
What do you want people to feel when they’re dealing with you? Are you fun and lighthearted? Or maybe you have a much more corporate outlook. Look at the type of service you offer and then try and channel a voice that is industry appropriate but also true to your values. It’s important that you have a clear idea of who you are as this will play a large part in shaping your tone of voice.
Stay on brand
Your tone of voice is a valuable marketing tool, defining how people interact with you. But you must be consistent as any discrepancies will have a jarring effect on the experience of your customers. Consider Innocent drinks who use their playful tone across everything they publish. From website copy to blog posts, emails to tweets – even their content packaging. They use totally consistent and cohesive brand messaging. You too must be totally committed to your tone of voice.
Your competitors will certainly have websites, will probably have social media accounts and will more than likely send out emails too. In short, they will be communicating in the same congested spaces as you. Therefore you must distinguish yourself from them. Take inspiration from giants such as Netflix, Amazon and the previously mentioned Innocent Drinks. So much care has gone into making them stand out from the crowd. Look at what your competitors are doing and then angle content in a way that’s true to you, and better!
Create a tone of voice guide
To assist with the integration of a clear and consistent tone of voice you should consider creating a tone of voice guide, or if you already have brand guidelines, include a tone of voice section in there. This would typically contain the following:
- A list of common words to use and ones to avoid
- Favoured topics for thought leadership material such as blogs, guides and infographics
- A general style for emails, landing pages and calls to action
- Communication guidelines for your social media accounts
It’s key to get something written down, otherwise – as your business grows, how else are other team members going to successfully follow your tone of voice?
*This post was published on MadeSimple.com