A brand tone of voice is the way a brand communicates its personality to customers. Without a consistent tone of voice, it’s challenging to establish a brand over time. The brand tone of voice guidelines is a reference document used to ensure consistency in the style of every piece of written communication.
A strong tone of voice can boost consumers’ and businesses’ perceptions of a brand and help it stand out amongst competitors.
Brand Tone of Voice: An Overview
In advertising, the decision on whether or not to use an authoritative, warm, or friendly tone is determined by the market’s target audience. The tone used can affect a consumer’s emotional response and purchase decision. Brand tone of voice refers to how you communicate with consumers – the words you choose, their order, rhythm, and pace.
A brand’s tone is what sets it apart and makes it memorable. Getting your tone right also helps you succeed amidst the competition. When seen in marketing and business, tone of voice refers to written rather than spoken words. The tone of voice influences a company’s written copy, including its website, social media messages, emails, and packaging.
Importance of Tone of Voice
A proper tone of voice can distinguish between a solid or weak brand. It can also define your brand personality and values.
Here’s why the brand tone of voice is essential.
1. It sets you apart
A brand tone of voice is an identifier, ensuring you’re not mistaken for another brand. It is distinctive, unique, and confident in that it communicates a consistent message to the target audience. Without a tone of voice to guide your brand, it’ll be challenging to stand out from the competition and connect with your audience.
Strategic planning will make your tone of voice a vital part of your brand positioning. Identify and understand the market’s tone; decide on the tone you want to embody; and then design your brand based on the tone.
2. It builds trust
Your tone of voice has a significant influence on the emotions your client will get. Understanding the tone of voice you want to embody will lead to clarity. It’s essential for a company to maintain consistency with its tone so that its writing is familiar to customers, building their trust.
3. It’s an expression of the brand
The tone of voice embodies and reflects the brand’s personality. It’s about the people that make up the brand – what drives them, what they love, and what they want to share with the world. Creating a tone of voice for your brand helps establish your brand’s mission and values.
4. It influences and persuades
The brand voice breeds a certain feeling in the target audience depending on the words and language used. This feeling either persuades customers to buy or dissuades them from buying. Choose your words carefully if you want to influence an audience’s purchase decision. A great tone of voice will impact your business positively.
How to Choose a Perfect Tone of Voice
If a company portrays itself to the public with a formal tone, consumers are likely to buy its product because it sounds serious. An authoritative tone can be confusing because it is perceived as restrictive and commanding. On the other hand, a relaxed style might be perceived as not serious.
These tips will guide you in settling for the perfect brand tone of voice.
1.Consider your target audience
The tone of voice should be crafted so that it not only resonates with the audience but also meets their needs. The tone of voice for a company targeting 25-year-old males would be very different from one targeting high schoolers. Your tone of voice is an expression of the brand, so make sure it aligns with what you have established.
2. Be genuine
Once you know the purpose of reaching out to your target audience, you can start to think about what is relevant to them. Use a conversational, honest, realistic, and likable tone. If your target audience sense an overhype in your tone or foul play, they will reject your message.
Avoid using combinations. Instead, use a consistent tone. Using a different tone of voice for the marketing material and another to describe products will confuse your audience. If you’re not consistent, your audience will not trust you.
Brand Tone of Voice Guidelines
Consistency in tone and copy is key to reinforcing the brand image. Tone of voice guidelines ensures that every written communication has the same tone, style, rhythm and language. The document sees that the brand’s tone of voice is consistent no matter who does the writing.
The tone of voice guidelines is a handy reference for new copywriters to get to grips with writing product descriptions for the brand. With the brand tone of voice guidelines, anyone can write in line with the company’s chosen tone.
The guidelines document must introduce your brand’s tone of voice, explaining what it stands for and how it supports your brand’s mission. It must also give people the information they need to create content for different channels.
Tips for Writing your Tone of Voice Guidelines
1. Establish a tone of voice framework
Set a specific tone of voice goals and establish a tone of voice framework. Know the wording and the voice you want to maintain. Double-check to ensure you have communicated the tone of voice goal in your pitch, writing, and website.
Be sure that the tone of voice is obvious in your writing and your brand’s icon, logo, color scheme, and other visual elements.
2. Highlight the tonal values of each channel
Tonal values are a big part of crafting the tone of voice guidelines. Defining your tonal values can be done in a team where you distill your values, and business approach into a working strategy.
For each channel, define which tonal values should be at center stage and which ones will be supportive.
3. Write best-practice tone of voice examples
People get to see the brand’s tone of voice in action and how it works when examples are written. Write out best-practice brand voice examples for each of your channels. Use a short paragraph to explain how it works and fits into your tone of voice strategy.
Also include some dummy “worst-practice” versions to show how the voice brand shouldn’t be used.
Brand Voice Vs. Brand Tone
Brand voice is the core personality of a brand. It is a brand’s “personality” expressed through various verbal, visual, and written communication channels. The brand voice reflects the brand’s values and goals, so it is consistent over time. Your brand voice includes all the communications tools you use; your words, language, and brand imagery, from logos to banners and advertising content.
On the other hand, the brand tone is the “feeling” that a distinct brand voice evokes. It is how you use your brand voice to express your brand and build an emotional connection with customers. The tone is more flexible and adaptable than voice and can be used in various situations. A brand tone may be aggressive, another may be warm and friendly.
The brand tone of voice is one of the critical aspects of creating a brand. It is what sets you apart in your niche and help build trust.
The tone of voice guidelines serves as a reference document to maintain consistency in your brand’s tone of voice.
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