Many of us can recognise an advertisement for an Apple product even if the ad itself doesn’t contain any reference to the brand.
That’s because we’re able to identify the distinct and unique tone of voice that drives Apple’s marketing efforts worldwide. This is just one of the many successful brand voice examples in the market.
So, what really is a brand voice, and how can you find yours?
A brand voice is the personality of a brand it showcases in all its communications, from advertisements to social media engagement.
It’s an all-encompassing concept that determines how your audience views your brand. It also helps make your brand memorable both now and in the future.
Read on for simple and effective tone of voice guidelines that you can incorporate into your outreach efforts today.
7 Steps to Create Your Unique Brand Voice
There’s no fixed template to develop the ideal brand voice for your business. But following these basic steps will help you find yours that best reflects your brand’s values and characteristics.
Review your mission statement and business values
To maintain consistency and improve brand perception, your brand voice must be in line with your mission statement and values.
These values must determine the kind of language and messaging you want your brand to be identified with.
For example, if your mission statement focuses on eco-friendly processes, your brand voice should reflect these values in every piece of content that is put out to your audience.
Audit your present communication channels
Reviewing your existing brand voice is critical in defining what exactly you want your brand voice to be.
Audit all your existing communication channels, from social media posts, blogs, and signage to your website and advertisements, and note the common themes that appear in the content. These themes determine your current brand voice. Then you can decide if it’s best suited for what you are trying to achieve.
Research your audience
To deliver content in a voice that is well-received by your audience, you must first make a concerted effort to understand your audience.
You may conduct surveys to gain insight into how members of your target audience perceive your brand and its voice.
You may also research your audience’s preferred tone and language by looking at their interests, readings and publications, and other factors.
Pick an industry-appropriate voice
While your business values may be different from all your competitors, you must understand what brand voice is appropriate in your industry.
For instance, a business selling funky designer t-shirts must not opt for overly formal or serious language since that would render the brand voice incredibly out of place.
You must also ensure that you don’t copy the brand voice of your competitors. Instead, deploy creative measures to leave a lasting impression in the minds of your audience.
Understand what you are not
A tried and tested way to arrive at the perfect brand voice for your business is to make a list of the things that your business most certainly is not.
For example, once you determine that your business is not pretentious, overly serious, unfriendly or impassionate, you’ll find it easier to outline what your brand voice should be. In this case, it could be friendly, approachable, and simple.
Create a brand voice chart
Once you have an idea of what attributes you want your brand voice to reflect, it’s time to incorporate these into a brand voice chart.
There’s no specified format for a good brand voice chart. But basically, it must contain adjectives that describe your business, brief descriptions of each adjective, and the dos and don’ts of incorporating the brand voice into any content.
Here’s an example:
Ensure consistent messaging with a brand voice document
It’s essential to create a detailed and robust brand voice document that further expands on the ideas reflected on your brand voice chart.
Your brand voice document serves as a guide for anyone who creates content for your business. It’ll help them capture your brand voice as accurately as possible.
Moreover, the brand voice must be consistent across all branding and marketing messaging. For example, your brand’s Twitter handle must reflect the voice and energy used on your blog or website content.
Stay top of mind with a unique brand voice
Devoting time and effort to curating the best possible brand voice is something that is indispensable for any business.
A good and consistent brand voice will ensure that your customers recognise and remember what you bring to the table every time they see brand-related content or messaging. It’ll translate to better customer engagement and performance over time.