Creating your brand voice may be the most important step you make in marketing your product. The voice you choose to represent your brand will affect everything from what you say to how you say it, not to mention who you’re saying it to. But how do you determine your brand voice? Or use it? And what exactly is it? Read on for our complete guide to establishing and using an authentic brand voice.
What is a Brand Voice?
First things first, what is a brand voice? The long version: your brand voice is the tone your company chooses to communicate with consumers through prose and other channels. The short version? “Brand voice” is your brand’s personality. The way you choose to communicate with your audience says a lot about who you are as a company. So, who do you want to be? Not sure? We’ve got some tips to help you get started.
How to Choose Your Brand Voice:
- Describe your brand (and then expand).
All right, describe your brand in three words. Yes, you only get three! Not easy, is it? Having to boil your brand down to three adjectives may seem near impossible, but it’s important that you get to the essence of what your brand stands for. Once you have chosen your three words, write them down. Now describe those words further. If “passionate” was one of your words, how will your brand express that? Will your passion come off through excitement about your product, being socially engaged, or having a strong, respected opinion within your industry? This expansion will tell you what form your written communication should take.
- Figure out your demographic.
Who are you trying to attract? And no, everybody is not an option. No mater how great your product is, not everyone will want it. More than likely, there are two to three smaller, more niche groups you should focus on. Who are these people? What do they do for a living? What do they like or dislike? Get into the mind of your consumers. Knowing who you’re going after helps to determine your voice by keeping the end goal in mind: your consumers. If you’re not appealing to them, chances are they won’t be your consumers for long.
- Decide what you want people to get out of your brand.
Where do you fit into your consumers’ lives? What do they want when coming to your brand? Decide how you want to make your consumers feel when they visit your site or store. What do you want them to think? Pay attention to these answers. Many times, the brand voice will reflect the tone of the person in charge of writing or shooting the content, as that is what would come across as the most genuine. Once you know how and where you want to fit into your audience’s life, make the proper changes to your tone and channels to reflect that. If you want to be an expert, take on a more authoritative tone. If you want to be a brand they can come to for fun and relaxation, your brand voice needs to reflect that.
- Find out where the three elements meet.
By now you should have a pretty good idea of what your brand voice is. Bringing the three previous elements together should tell you everything you need to know about communicating with your audience.
- Determine how you stand out.
What’s working for the competition probably won’t work for you, and it shouldn’t. In order to find success and your niche as a brand, you need to figure out what makes you different. Find what elements of competing brands you like, but you need to focus more on what elements distinguish you from the rest. Otherwise, customers coming to your site over your competition’s is a coin toss. And no one builds a brand on a coin toss.
So, you have a brand voice. Now what?
You lived through the harrowing process of determining your brand voice. You spent hours pouring over your social channels and deciding your key demographics. But now what? How does this information translate into better business practices? Here’s three ways to use that newfound voice of yours.
- Make sure all your channels communicate the same voice.
While your various social platforms may serve slightly different purposes, one common mistake occurs with varying the tone across your channels as well. Anybody should be able to look at your channel and automatically know it’s yours based on the voice. We repeat: DO NOT vary your brand voice across channels. You have one voice, and while we love a good impersonation, your social platforms are not the place for it.
- Evolve your brand voice.
Your voice should never be stagnant. Your brand is constantly growing and shifting, and your tone should reflect that. Are there some things your consumers respond more to? While you should never give up authenticity to pander to fans, there’s nothing wrong with a little fan service. As new techniques and channels come into play, your voice will adapt with it. Remember: no voice is ever perfect. Keep improving.
- Build your brand up with video.
Ready to take your brand voice to the next level? Then leave the prose and take your tone to video! Video is a great way to connect your brand voice to impactful visuals. Whether it’s creating a brand video bio, video proposals, or simply creating some short clips to put on your social media, a strong voice combined with video will take your message to the next level. Need some ideas and inspiration? Check out our portfolio to see what video can do for your brand!
Would you like to learn more about building your brand, or about other video topics? Reach out to IDR for additional information and answers to all your questions. You’ll discover why we’re Orange County’s premier producer of TV commercials, infomercials, and online videos for a wide range of businesses, organizations, and brands.