Do you want to make your online business memorable? Having your own brand voice will help you stand out from the crowd.
Then developing your brand voice and tone needs to be at the top of your to do list. Regardless of the type of online business you run, cultivating your brand voice and tone matters. It can be the difference between working with your ideal clients… or not. If you don’t have a voice (or you aren’t sure you have one), we’ll talk about why brand voice and tone matters in this blog post.
Whether you just are getting started online or you’ve been in the game for awhile, having a consistent voice can make all the difference in being remembered. Today, we’ll be discussing what brand voice and tone is, plus how it can help your online business stand out.
What is brand voice?
Brand voice, used in synergy with your visual design, online presence, and packaging (whether digital or physical) is what tells your brand’s story.
Brand voice is the purposeful, consistent expression of a brand through words and prose styles that engage and motivate. It’s true: The personality of your brand is determined, in large measure, by the words you use and the sentences you write. – Larsen
Simply put, your brand voice is your brand’s personality in words.
No doubt there are other entrepreneurs who produce, coach, and create products similar to yours. What differentiates you between them is how you communicate about your brand about what you do, why you do it, and how your products work.
What is brand tone?
While brand voice put words to the overall vision of your brand, your brand tone is the way you communicate your vision and values depending on the situation. For example, your tone changes depending on if you’re sending out an email marketing campaign compared to responding to an angry social media post.
3 reasons why brand voice and tone matter
1) A brand voice encapsulates your values and ideals.
How many times have you bought a product over the other because you resonate with how the brand communicates?
I love method, a cleaning supply company based in the US, because of their fun voice, dedication to minimal toxic ingredients, and overall tone throughout their product line that seems laid back, yet smart and almost a little witty:
Another example is social media scheduling tool, Buffer. This team is a master at writing in a helpful and friendly way, whether you’re reading an email, a blog post, or in-platform notifications, the voice (and tone!) is generally the same. They aren’t shy about sharing their values and ideals as a company and using it in their written communication, either:
Whether you are a new business or have never officially developed your brand voice, determining your brand voice can help you stand out easily to your ideal clients and customers from the get go.
Think about why you created your online business to begin with. Consider outlining 3-5 different values that align with your brand and also how those connect you with your readers and customers.
2) A consistent brand voice builds trust.
Consistency breeds trust, so determine your brand voice and stick to it.
If you communicate with your audience in a consistent way, whether that’s on your Instagram posts, in your email marketing, or in your blog posts, they know what to expect and start to connect with your brand.
You can even build your voice into your brand, especially if you’re a writer, like Ash Ambirge from TMF Project does. She has cultivated a very particular audience: One that prioritizes wine, travel, and a dirty mouth and that’s the way she wants it. Ash has done very well with her online copywriting business because of her consistency of voice across all channels that attract her ideal clients straight to her online doorstep:
You can do the exact same thing as Ash online, but what makes you stand out to potential clients is how, and what, you communicate about your brand. You may be a kickass copywriter, too, but prefer craft beer and weekend camping instead.
Do you see how sharing your brand values can attract different audiences, depending on what values you decide to communicate about your brand?
Whether you’re sharing your brand’s story on your ecommerce about page or you’re sending an email marketing campaign, the voice and tone should be consistent. Regardless if you’re personally having a less-than-ideal day, your communication should reflect your brand values and voice, not your current mood.
Mail chimp is another great example of a clear and consistent brand voice. They start their Voice and Tone guide with what their voice is and what it isn’t:
Mailchimp is an expert at communicating consistently across all platforms, using their Voice and Tone guide to help them navigate content creation. Because Mailchimp is a leader in communicating their brand values in a fun, informal way, they’ve become very popular. If you need inspiration, check out their Voice and Tone guide.
3) A brand tone is not what you say, it’s how you say it.
Your brand tone is simply part of your brand voice. Your message is what you say; how you say it is the tone.
For example, the way you communicate about upcoming courses to your email marketing list will differ from how you communicate with a buyer having trouble downloading your digital product. Your brand’s tone will also differ when managing unhappy customers and complaints on social media than it will when sharing testimonials from your biggest fans.
Mailchimp shares that their tone is “usually informal” and “has a sense of humor”, but “don’t go out of your way to make a joke—forced humor can be worse than none at all.”
Frank Body is another one of our favorite brands (yes, we talk about them a lot!), because of the fun way they communicate about their products. Frank Body is written in the voice of a man, Frank, who loves sharing about his products and how they benefit your life. They have a very specific brand voice, which is distinguishable no matter where you come across the brand:
Pair that with their design and there is an unmistakable brand that stands out no matter what channel you interact with them on:
Once you nail your brand voice and tone, you’re that much closer to wrangling in your ideal target market and making bank. If you could sum up your brand voice in just a few words, what would they be? Think about the different scenarios that would also require your brand tone to change.
What makes your brand stand out?
Leave us a comment below on how your brand voice and tone helps your target audience find you in the sea of samesies, distinguishing your brand from the others.