If your company were a person, what would it look like? What style of clothing would it wear? How would it walk, and where would it be going?
Most importantly of all, how would it talk?
While your brand will never casually stroll around the street, the truth is that it already talks to your customers, target market, and employees every day through its brand voice and tone.
In this post, we’ll make sure you know the differences between brand tone and brand voice. Then, we’ll help you to understand the most effective ways to define your unique company voice and tone.
If you’re ready to help your brand stand out from the competition, make stronger connections with your customers, and have a lot more fun creating future content and customer communications tools, read on.
Brand Tone vs. Voice: Know the Differences
If you want to connect with your customers, make it easy for your target market to find and identify with your business, and increase your brand recognition as a whole, you need to make sure you know how to talk to people.
You also need to keep your brand’s voice and tone consistent — no matter where you’re using it, or who you’re talking to.
Your company’s voice and tone will come out in website and blog content, on social media, in customer emails, in your marketing videos, and even in your product descriptions.
But what’s one common mistake that too many companies make?
Assuming that voice and tone are the same things — when in reality, they are more different than you might expect.
Your voice is all about expressing your brand’s personality as a whole. It’s how you share your unique point-of-view with your target market.
Are you more playful or more serious? Are you a bit nerdy or more like a jock? What kinds of vocabulary do you use, and what specific company words and “lingo” can you create or adopt?
Brand tone, on the other hand, is all about the specific ways in which you use your brand voice — think of it as your attitude.
Let’s say your brand voice is lighthearted and humorous.
Your tone allows you to decide which specific brand of humor you’re going to employ. For example, are you interested in dark humor or sarcasm? Slapstick humor or something a bit more intellectually based and “clever?” Do you use puns — and if so, how often do you use them?
Once you’re clear on the differences between brand tone vs. voice, you can start to define your own.
How to Define Your Brand Voice
Now, let’s talk about how to define your company’s voice.
The very first thing you need to do is some deep-dive research into your market as a whole. Here, it’s especially smart to develop a few buyer personas that each represent a different segment of your market.
Think about how they speak, the vocabulary they use, the speed and economy of the way they talk, and even some of their favorite expressions.
You should also take a look at any of the past content you’ve created. This will help you to identify commonly-used words/phrases, patterns of speech, and your personality as a whole.
Then, sit down with a few members of your team. Ask them each to describe your brand voice in three words. Notice any overlap, and make sure you continue along those lines in the future.
Developing Your Brand Tone
In most cases, the definition of brand tone leaves a bit more room for fluidity than brand voice does.
If you change your brand voice all the time, your customer base is likely to get confused about exactly who you are. But if you switch up your brand tone from time to time? Your market will still recognize you — they’re just seeing other sides of your brand.
Here, you should think about what sort of content you’re creating at the moment.
What’s your segmented audience? Are you communicating through video, where tone comes across much more easily? Or, are you communicating through writing — which may require more explanation of your tone?
If you’re making a meme, go for a tone that’s quippy and clever. If you’re drafting a company memo, your tone can be a bit more authoritative, but you can still sneak in humor here and there when appropriate.
Also, make sure you develop a consistent tone guideline for employee communication with your customers.
After all, a playful tone might work for a silly social media post. But when a client is calling in with a direct question about why their order is late?
That playful tone will definitely make the customer angry — and may even suggest to them that you don’t care about the issue. They need to feel heard and walk away from the conversation confident that you’re handling the problem.
Create a few examples of different tones for your team members to rely on based on the specific customer service situation at hand. This helps you to retain your customers and makes your employees’ jobs much easier.
The Right Software Makes Implementing Consistent Brand Tone and Voice Easy
Now, you have the tools you need to perfect your brand tone and voice.
It may take some time and some serious research, but once you develop a consistent pattern, you can then start streamlining all of your customer communications and experiences to better represent your voice and tone.
Need some help with that?
If so, rely on our incredible software to help improve every aspect of the way you interact with your customers.
From document automation to personalized customer communications, reach out to us to learn more about how we’ll help paint your company in the best possible light.