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The Dos and Don'ts of Developing an Authentic Brand Voice



By Katie Kukwa, Assistant Account Manager


Let’s talk about the importance of having or developing an authentic brand voice. If you don’t already know, every time you write a piece of content on a website, social media, white papers, blog etc. you are establishing the voice of your brand. As you write a piece and a person interacts with it the consumer determines if they trust your brand, if they’ll want to continue to interact with you and, most importantly, are you a trusted source of information?


Now that we’ve established what a brand voice is, we’re going to dig a little deeper and share three dos and three don’ts of establishing an authentic brand voice.


DO….


Establish the personality of your brand.

Think of your brand as a character in a book, television show or even a movie. Who would it be? It can be one personality or it can be several blended together. The personality all depends on the message and the content you’re sharing with your audience. For example, a client specializing in health care may choose the likes of Dr. House, James Bond and Sheldon Cooper to form their persona.


Why these characters? Dr. House is smart and one of the most brilliant minds in medicine, but he’s also witty. James Bond is regal, put together, and concise. Sheldon Cooper is a genius and can speak to the technical pieces of anything he’s ever learned. He’s vat of information.


Who does your brand voice sound like?


Write from your reader's perspective.

When writing your content look at it from your reader's perspective. Is it easy to understand? Is there too much industry jargon? Professional service firms, such as law firms, are excellent at providing information, but what good is it if the people reading it don’t understand it? The content then lies flat and the brand voice isn’t benefitting the brand by helping to establish trust and drive people to a call to action. Keep in mind, your consumer wants to know how things are going to benefit them, they don’t want to have to work to understand what you’re trying to tell them.


Be consistent across your platforms.

Always, always, ALWAYS use the same voice across all pieces and platforms. Whether you’re writing content for a website or you’re designing a trifold, make sure your brand voice is consistent. Inconsistencies can lead a consumer to be confused, mistrust your brand and keep them from continuing to interact with your product or service.


DON'T….


Be dramatic. Stick with the facts.

There’s enough drama in the world so remember to stick with the facts. Your customer wants you to give them the information they’re searching for without embellishment or clickbait headlines. Hootsuite recommends avoiding the use of words such as “top, best, worst, need, and only.” This is because people are more likely to consume your content, buy your product, or click to learn more if they believe you’re not trying to sell them on something. Remember the more positive, fun or helpful your brand is, the better.


Forget to be human.

Talk and act like a person. After all, people don’t want to be talked at they want to be treated like an equal. Global brand and innovative creative consultants, Lippincott, shared that in their “Lippincott Brand Study (an annual survey of 800 brands) leaders who connected in a more human way had a 20 percent stronger favorability with their customers. And they returned 11 percent more each year to their shareholders over four years.”


Overcomplicate your content.

Do you know the old saying, less is more? This also applies to writing content. Know what your audience wants to hear or read and don’t overdo it. Lippincott says this: “customers will actually hear more if you say less. Simple often isn’t so simple. But it’s absolutely essential in order to cut through the clutter. For example, a retail bank branch reduced the clutter of its signs and messages by 80 percent, but customers actually recalled more of its messages.”


Developing an authentic brand voice is not only important for the identity of your brand, but for your consumer. If you need help establishing a brand voice or aren’t sure how to get started, contact Millennial Pink Media and see how we can help.

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