Picture it. You're scrolling through your Facebook feed, and you come across an engaging photo of a beautifully designed logo and current project from a new renovation company. You're intrigued, so you begin reading the copy, and it looks like this:
"We ain't gonna lie, this job was right hard. Were takin bookins for reenos now."
First thought is, nice logo — but they obviously have some issues with attention to detail......annnd, you keep scrolling.
The language, tone of voice, grammar used to reflect the brand it's representing, demographic it's targeting, and the platform it's being posted on — all contribute to a definitive and consistent brand voice and language.
You've developed your brand identity, the service or product you provide, but how do you create the connection between customer and brand? The easy answer is your logo, but how can you portray your brand and explain your values and culture all while keeping the product or service in the limelight? A consistent brand language.
A brand language can't be developed overnight, it takes research, visuals, and some great copywriting. How you speak to your customer can set you apart from your competitors. Your tone of voice, grammar, post length - they all contribute to how your customer sees you.
Not sure how to get there? Here are a few things to consider when finding your brands 'voice':
Who's Your Audience
By defining your buyer persona you're creating your baseline audience. Thus begins your journey to creating a tone of voice and language that will engage the people you've identified as your ideal customer.
Let’s take a look at a couple of targeted brand language examples.
Dove has been releasing multiple ads promoting inclusivity while celebrating differences. The positive undertones and focus on the beauty of the female form speak volumes to their target demographic.
Alternatively, Harley-Davidson exudes a grittiness with sarcastic and comedic tones. Appealing to those who have the freedom (or want the freedom) to travel, and spontaneously seek adventure.
where do i start?
So you’ve determined who your target demo is, now - how do you appeal to them? First, we recommend choosing three words that accurately describe your business, then answer the following:
- What core beliefs and values contribute to the way you do business?
- If your brand were a person who emanated these beliefs and values, what would they be like?
- How is your product or service different from your competitors?
With this information, you can begin to form your language and tone of voice. The Neilson Norman Group identified four dimensions of the tone of voice:
- Funny vs. Serious
- Formal vs. Casual
- Respectful vs. Irreverent
- Enthusiastic vs. Matter-Of-Fact
Of course, your voice can be a mixture of these, depending on the message you’re communicating, the platform you’re using, and the goal you’re looking to achieve.
By understanding your culture and values, the audience you want to target and the tone of voice you will use - you can create a transparent and honest approach to any marketing strategy.
how does this translate into $$?
According to Stackla, 86% of consumers say that authenticity is a key factor when deciding what brand to support. This makes complete sense - if you don’t stand behind your messaging, your customers won’t either.
Having a consistent brand voice, with a clear message and brand-specific tone helps to build a relationship with your customers based on trust. Of the companies surveyed by Lucidpress, they reported a 33% increase in revenue with consistent brand messaging.
REview and Evolve
This rings true with anything - every industry evolves. Taking a look at your analytics and reviewing the impact your language may have on your various marketing campaigns is key. If something isn't working, change it. Sit down with your team and talk about the values and ideas you want to convey, this is helpful not only in the beginning stages but also as you continue to develop your brand’s voice.
Keep in mind that your words, tone and general message can be very powerful. In the end, the tone and language you use should reflect not only your brand, but the core values and culture of your business. If you can stand behind your culture, values, and the product or service your provide, your potential and existing customers will too.