How to find your Tone of Voice

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Are you using the right tone of voice?

When you were a kid, were you ever told not to use that tone of voice? I suspect we were all told to watch our tone, or not to use that tone of voice. And we all knew what that warning meant.

In business, you are likely to strike the wrong chord with people if you use the wrong tone of voice in your branding and marketing. It is essential that you know the tone of voice you want to project to your target audience.

What is tone of voice?

Your brand’s tone of voice is its personality. It is how you want your brand to be heard, seen and importantly how you want your customers and clients to feel. It is how you communicate with your target audience.

Basically, your tone of voice comes across in the words and images of your advertising material: on your website, social media platforms, email marketing, brochures – even your business cards.

What are some examples of tone of voice?

  • Serious and authoritative
  • Informative and formal
  • Conversational and friendly
  • Humourous and relaxed

How do you find the right tone of voice?

Your industry will often determine tone of voice. A Lawyer or Financier would adopt a serious and authoritative tone while a Social Media Marketing Agency could be conversational and friendly. A computer and IT specialist would come across as informative and formal while a party goods supplier would be humourous and relaxed.

Should tone of voice be consistent?

You should keep your tone of voice consistent across your marketing platforms. It’s fine to alter the content to suit the platform: a blog post will have more content than a tweet and a web page will have more content than an Instagram post. Tailor the content to suit the platform but maintain the tone of voice that represents you and your brand.

What goals can you achieve with tone of voice?

Every business has one clear goal in mind and that is to connect with its target audience. By adopting the right tone of voice for your product or business, you should connect on 3 important levels:

  1. Trust. Your audience reads your marketing material, identifies with your message, and instantly trusts in your shared values.
  2. Connection. This trust leads to an emotional connection between your brand and your audience. You become more than just a brand name to them.
  3. Recall. The trust and emotional connection to your brand makes is easier for your audience to remember you. It could be a subconscious filing of your logo, tag line or image. But they remember you.

It’s quite simple really. Just speak to your audience on a human-to-human level in a tone of voice that represents your brand and them.

Get in touch if you need help – words are my business.