Your Brand Voice Matters Now More Than Ever
Clear and effective communication with your customers is always important, but there’s an added weight behind the words you use right now. Today Macarta’s Sr. Copywriter Nicole Bolt breaks down brand voice basics, suggests best practices for establishing your brand voice and discusses the importance of connecting with your audience:
Within the first few days of the COVID-19 pandemic, you probably received an email from every company you’ve ever subscribed to with the subject line: ‘How [Company] is Handling Coronavirus.’ Brands have had to make difficult decisions around their finances, distribution and shipping, workforce and more, and along with that, those brands have had to decide how they communicate those decisions to their customers and followers.
Now, perhaps more than ever before, your brand voice matters. How you speak to your customers goes beyond PR and beyond your legal team–it’s about being human. What you say matters, but what’s crucial is how you say it.
What is a Brand Voice
Everyone is familiar with the term ‘brand voice,’ but what does it really mean to have one? Your brand voice is a personification of your company and should represent your consumers. The tone you use should be consistent on every platform–eCommerce, Amazon, advertising, marketing and social media. When developing your brand voice, consider the following:
- Every team in your company should come together for an informal discussion about who you are as a brand. Let the conversation flow and take notes. Your brand voice should be just as recognizable as your logo.
- Aside from the words you are using, how does the tone of your voice convey the brand? If you have a serious product, your voice should reflect that to some degree.
- Once you establish what your brand voice is, you also need to establish what your brand voice is not. For example, if you sell unique, eccentric hair accessories, your brand voice may be quirky, but you don’t want to sound flighty. You’re carefree, but you’re not careless. As a final step, write your guiding principles down as a reference guide and teaching tool for the future.
Why Your Brand Voice Matters
There is a message that you need to get out and despite all that is going on in the world, people’s livelihood is attributed to you trying to maintain business as usual. However, as we’ve seen play out over the last few weeks, as advertisers and as consumers, there is a right way and a wrong way to market your product.
If you have a new product that is set to launch, you want to make sure that you are positioning it in a way that is relevant without being opportunistic. This is a great time to collaborate with your teams about messaging and gather a variety of perspectives. Think about it this way–most of what you say to your dog depends on your tone. If you tell your dog, “get off the couch,” in a sweet, loving tone, your dog probably won’t get the message. How you say it is arguably more important than what you say.
Starting the Writing Process
So many people say, “I’m just not a good writer.” Allow me to let you in on a secret: if you can have a conversation, you can write. The most important step the writing process is to simply start. If it helps, try thinking out loud and recording your thoughts on your phone and work off of that. Don’t try to craft the perfect sentence or find the right word to use on your first try, that’s what the editing process is for. Once you start writing and get your ideas down, you’ll probably surprise yourself with the result.
Writing your ideas first, and then optimizing your copy for SEO keywords, allows you to maintain a human element to your copy. Keyword research can be a great place to start if you’re stuck at the beginning, but sometimes it can limit your ability to let the brand voice shine through. It’s important that you integrate relevant keywords into your copy though so people are able to see your content.
Every element that represents your brand, from your logo to your imagery, copy to creative, plays a part in establishing your brand identity. Over the coming weeks and months, it’s important to let your customers know that there are people behind the brand that care about your customers and followers, so use your brand voice to help convey that message.
Have more questions about copy? We have a team of experts who are ready to help: