Will your audience recognize your content if you don’t slap your logo on it?
If your answer is no, you need to stop all sorts of communication and advertising with your customers right away.
As a business, every time you launch a new ad campaign, attend an event or publish a blog, you are displaying an identity. What is it?
It’s called a Brand Voice; it’s an identity that you form for your brand and project to the world. It helps people recognize you, makes them understand your values and keeps them hooked.
Brand voice has always been an important part of marketing and there are several professional branding agencies in India to help you incorporate the same for your firm.
What Is A Brand Voice?
Brand voice is the identity of your firm that you use to present your firm to others. It is something that enables the audience to recognize any content by you even if it doesn’t have your logo or if it is on a different platform.
Yes, your brand already has a voice. But is it the right one? Or is it genuine?
The basic meaning of brand voice is pretty abstract. Thus, not many marketers dive in the deep end. Think of it like this: If your brand is a person, what would it look and sound like? Will it seem friendly or stuck-up? Is it warm and funny or a little geekier? A hip youngster or an aging uncle? The personification of your brand can help you understand what your brand voice is now and how you want it to be later.
People are saturated with the number of advertisements thrown at them every moment. They are looking for brands which aren’t actively trying to sell them something all the time. They want something they can relate with and is authentic.
How To Cultivate Your Brand Voice
There are several key elements to developing a good brand voice. You would create a number of concepts for your logo design, so why not do the same for your brand voice? Try to understand all the elements involved in the creation of a voice before you start with your marketing.
You’ll need to figure it out and spread it through digital content, offline material and even use it when you’re communicating with your clients. Essentially, we’ve tried to sum up the process of building a brand voice in 5 key steps. Let’s take a look at them in detail:
- Figure out your target audience
- Define your brand’s personality
- Set brand voice guidelines
- Consistent brand voice
- Keep it simple
1. Figure Out Your Target Audience
Yes, we know. When it comes to branding and marketing, we are always talking about “Target Audience” and you’re bored with it. But we talk about it so much because it is just that important!
You converse differently with everyone you come across on a daily basis. For example, the way you talk to your boss at work is very different from the way you’d talk to a kid. In the same way, you need to know who you’re speaking to before you choose a tone of voice.
It’s similar when you are trying to build a brand voice. For this, you’ll need a buyer’s persona to understand who your audience is and what they do. When you know who your audience is, you’ll be able to gauge what kind of content is better suited for them and how to present it.
A buyer’s person also helps if you decide to go for paid promotions on social media platforms as you can use it for setting the demographics and decide what kind of audience to target.
Apart from that, you can try listening to your consumers to see how they talk and what they like. If you already have an audience, you can create a small survey with questions like these:-
- If our brand were a human, what would it sound like?
- Do you think that our tone is appropriate?
- How would you describe our brand?
You can also study your competitors to see who has an engaging voice and incorporate some of the aspects from them to your brand voice.
2. Your Brand’s Personality
Just cracking the intel about your audience won’t cut it. Once you know who your audience is, you have to form a personality for your brand as well. Many people opt for hiring professional brand builder before they launch a new venture but you can just as easily do it yourself.
Your company should be a reflection of your values and ideas. What does your CEO keep repeating when he is talking about the company? What does he want to deliver to the clients? Looking at the future, what is his goal?
Use your tagline, your mission, your vision, your aim and anything else you need to understand who your brand is exactly.
If you already understand the brand’s ideals, then you need to reinforce them using the brand personality. It should have the essence of your brand and it’ll be useful in helping you build a brand voice.
Create a persona that the audience can relate to and resonate with. Incorporate your unique selling proposition [USP] and promote it through your brand voice. Your logo also plays an important role in helping people understand your brand. If you don’t have a logo, here’s an interesting blog about color psychology that will help you determine the correct colors for your brand.
3. Set Brand Voice Guidelines
In a firm, all the employees who interact with others on behalf of the firm are representing your brand. Each individual is different and thinks differently. Hence, it’s obvious that not everyone will understand what kind of voice they should be using.
The image they portray also reflects on your company, be it content writers or the sales team. If everyone talk in a different manner, your brand voice will be rather haywire. What’s the solution?
What you can do is set some specific brand voice guidelines that everyone should compulsorily adhere to. A list of dos and don’ts, few words depicting the brand’s identity and a short description of what the brand should portray is a good way to set guidelines. Here’s an example of the same:
This not only helps everyone understand and represent the voice better but it’s also beneficial if you work with freelancers and when someone new joins the company.
4. Consistent Brand Voice
When you set guidelines for your brand’s persona, it sets an expectation for you to follow through with it. Constantly changing the voice isn’t going to help you spread brand awareness and the audience will find it difficult to recognize. Consistency will enable the audience to recognize you easily.
Coca-Cola is a leading example of how you should stick to a set brand voice and the way it can work in your favor. They have been ‘selling happiness’ since 1886, so they have a truck-load of advertising material.
However, no matter what happened or how many years have passed, Coca-Cola’s brand voice and identity are still the same.
Quality Branding Services in India can help you create an exceptional brand identity for your firm. Not only that, you need a certain consistency throughout your brand. Every customer-facing asset of your company needs to act as one voice even if they are all different people. [It could be several content or copywriters, or sales executives, or the managers; all of them represent your brand in one way or the other in front of others.]
5 Keep It Simple
An Indian politician, with exceptional English vocabulary, was turned into a subject for memes overnight. Why?
Because very few people could actually understand his tweet with ease. Others were busy Googling each word separately in order to try and make some sense of the same.
You need to keep it simple when building a brand voice. Not just the voice but also the guidelines that you create. There just is no point in unnecessarily complicating things.
Use simple language and keep the sentences short so that your audience can easily understand what you’re trying to say. Don’t overcomplicate things if it isn’t necessary. Keeping information short and crisp helps people understand it easily. It also encourages them to engage with you online.
When making the guidelines for your brand voice, ensure that it is written simply enough for everyone to understand it on their own. It’ll become rather tedious for you to explain the guidelines to each and every person. Hence, try not to make it too complicated.
Finding your brand voice
Finding your original brand voice is a tedious but rewarding process. If you keep it boring and information-centric or if you keep rambling about your products, nobody will feel like making any purchases.
When you humanize your brand and add emotions into the mix, people feel more inclined towards making a purchase.
This may seem a little difficult to achieve along with handling your daily business functions, but you can consider hiring a brand developer for your business. People who do branding professionally are able to view your firm in a different light and from a unique angle, thus generating more ideas.
Do you need any more guidance for making your branding strategy? Here is an interesting read that will help you create the perfect brand strategy.