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Brand Voice: What It Is and Why It Matters

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In the jam-packed digital marketplace, your brand voice is the heartbeat of your brand’s identity. It distinguishes you from competitors and connects you with your audience on a personal level.

You know how there are different tones you use when speaking with friends and family versus when you’re at the office or making small-talk with strangers? Your mannerisms and vocabulary may change in different social settings, but ultimately, you still sound like you – that’s the jist of what brand voice is meant to do; It’s the root of how your brand communicates, with branches representing various platforms and purposes.

Let’s explore more of what brand voice is, why it matters, and how you can develop one that resonates with your audience and amplifies your messages.

What is Brand Voice?

What It Is

Brand voice is the unique persona and emotional tone your brand adopts in its communications. It’s how you convey your brand’s values, personality, and message through words, whether on your website, social media, or advertising. A consistent brand voice builds trust, fosters loyalty, and ensures your message cuts through the noise, reaching the hearts and minds of your audience.

What It Isn’t

Brand voice isn’t merely about the words you choose; it’s about how those words reflect the essence of your brand. It’s not a one-size-fits-all solution or a fleeting trend to adopt sporadically. Your brand voice should be as consistent and recognizable as your logo, unchanging with each campaign or platform.

How to Develop a Brand Voice – A Quick & Dirty Guide

Developing a brand voice that resonates starts with understanding who you’re speaking to and how you want your brand to be perceived.

Your Target Audience

Identify who your audience is, including their needs, preferences, and challenges. Understanding your audience at a deep level allows you to craft a voice that speaks directly to them, making your communications feel personal and relevant.

Consider how your target audience speaks – do they use a lot of slang, or none at all? Are they boisterous and extroverted, or are they more reserved and toned-down?

Your Brand, Personified

Going hand-in-hand with target audience visualization is brand personification. Imagine your brand as a person. What characteristics would they have? Are they formal and authoritative, or casual and friendly? Defining these traits can help personify your brand, making it easier to establish a voice that’s authentic and engaging.

Additionally, establishing guidelines for verbage and sentence structure do’s and don’ts can help you to further refine your brand voice. 

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Developing Your Brand Voice

1. Lack of Consistency

One of the most common mistakes is inconsistency. Your brand voice should be the same across all platforms and pieces of content. Inconsistency can confuse your audience and dilute your brand identity, making it harder for customers to recognize and connect with your brand.

2. Ignoring Your Audience

Not considering your target audience is a significant oversight. Your brand voice should resonate with the people you’re trying to reach, taking into account their preferences, pain points, and expectations. Failing to align your voice with your audience can result in messages that fall flat or fail to engage.

3. Overcomplicating Your Language

Simplicity is key in communicating with your audience. Using jargon, overly complex vocabulary, or convoluted sentences can alienate your audience. Your goal is to communicate clearly and effectively, not to impress with your linguistic capabilities. Also, make sure your grammar and punctuation are correct (unless that’s a core component of your brand, like Merv the Cat on TikTok. I freaking love this cat and their use of bad grammar and punctuation is honestly *chef’s kiss*).

4. Writing as Yourself Instead of Your Brand

Many business owners fall into the trap of writing in their personal voice rather than their brand voice. While authenticity is crucial, there’s a fine line between being authentic and making your brand’s communications too personal. Your brand voice should reflect your business’s personality, values, and mission, not just your own. This distinction is vital for maintaining professionalism and ensuring your messages resonate with a broad audience.

Caveat: If you are your brand, such as a personal coaching business or other business where you are the front and center service provider, you actually should consider infusing your brand voice with your personal voice.

5. Neglecting Emotion

Emotion drives engagement. Failing to inject emotion into your brand voice can make your communications feel cold and impersonal. Your brand voice should evoke feelings that align with your brand’s values and the messages you want to convey, whether that’s excitement, trust, comfort, or inspiration.

6. Not Evolving Your Voice

As your brand grows and the market changes, so too should your brand voice. Sticking rigidly to an outdated tone or style can make your brand seem out of touch. Regularly review and adjust your brand voice to ensure it remains relevant and resonant with your audience.

7. Forgetting About Feedback

Ignoring feedback from your audience is a missed opportunity for refinement. Listen to how your audience responds to your brand voice across different channels. Use their insights to tweak and improve your approach, ensuring your brand voice continues to engage and excite.

Brand Voice by Platform

While your core brand voice should remain consistent, the way it’s expressed can vary by platform. The tone on LinkedIn might be more professional, while Instagram could allow for a more relaxed and playful tone. Adapt your voice to fit the context of the platform while maintaining the essence of your brand personality.

How to Use a Brand Voice: Do’s and Dont’s

Do:

– Maintain consistency across all channels.
– Reflect your brand’s values and mission.
– Adapt your tone for different platforms while staying true to your brand voice.

Don’t:

– Shift your voice too dramatically between communications.
– Lose your brand’s personality in an attempt to sound like someone else.
– Overlook the importance of listening to your audience’s feedback on your brand voice.

Fictional Brand Voice Usage Example: NatureGlow

NatureGlow is a brand that embodies the essence of nature in its purest form. Its brand voice is warm, caring, and a little playful, reflecting its commitment to sustainability and natural beauty. NatureGlow speaks like a knowledgeable friend who cares deeply about your well-being and the planet.

Proper Use of NatureGlow’s Brand Voice

Website Copy: “Welcome to NatureGlow, where every product is a promise to you and the earth. Dive into our world of all-natural skincare and discover the joy of nurturing your skin the way nature intended.”

Social Media Post: “Hey, eco-warriors! ?? Ever wondered what makes our Rejuvenating Face Serum a hit? It’s the magic of pure, earth-friendly ingredients coming together for your skin’s joyride to radiance. #NatureGlow #EcoBeauty”

Customer Service Response: “Hello, Jasmine! We’re truly sorry to hear about your experience. At NatureGlow, your satisfaction and the planet’s health are our top priorities. We’d love to make it right and guide you to a product that your skin will adore. ?”

Improper Use of NatureGlow’s Brand Voice

Website Copy: “Buy our products. They are 100% natural.”

This is too direct and lacks the warmth and friendliness that characterizes NatureGlow’s brand voice. It misses an opportunity to connect on a personal level and doesn’t reflect the brand’s commitment to sustainability and natural wellness.

Social Media Post: “Our serum is good. It’s made from natural ingredients.”

This post fails to engage the audience in a meaningful way and doesn’t capture the playful, caring tone of NatureGlow. It doesn’t showcase the brand’s personality or the passion behind its products.

Customer Service Response: “Your complaint has been noted.”

This response is cold and impersonal, not reflecting NatureGlow’s warm and caring brand voice. It doesn’t convey empathy or a commitment to customer satisfaction, which could alienate customers.

Summary

Your brand voice is a powerful tool in building a connection with your audience. It’s what makes your brand relatable, trustworthy, and memorable. At DeuBetter Branding & Media, I specialize in helping businesses like yours find and refine their unique voice to stand out in a crowded marketplace. Whether you’re building a brand from the ground up or looking to redefine your voice, I’m here to guide you every step of the way. Reach out and let’s make your brand’s voice heard loud and clear.

I’m passionate about empowering businesses with the tools and insights they need to thrive in the digital world. Your brand voice is more than just a part of your marketing strategy; it’s the essence of who your brand is. Let me help you discover and deploy a brand voice that truly represents your business and speaks directly to your audience’s needs and aspirations.

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About DeuBetter

DeuBetter Branding & Media specializes in empowering small businesses with the digital marketing tools and knowledge they need to thrive. We’re your friendly guide through the world of marketing online, committed to making your business better.

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