What is a brand voice | The Writing Department

What is a brand voice?

If a brand is the feeling people get when they see your logo or hear your name, the brand voice is how you speak to your customers. Developing or refining a brand voice is part of content strategy, and it’s one of the many jobs of a copywriter.

Why should you care about a brand voice?

With so many platforms to choose from when speaking with customers, it’s more crucial than ever that organizations use a consistent, appropriate voice across each of them.

Speaking with a recognizable and reliable voice on all these channels ultimately translates into positive brand experiences, fostering consumer engagement, loyalty, and sales.

On the flip side, while multiple platforms create more opportunities to engage with and reach customers, they can also amplify an inconsistent brand and potentially damage your reputation. (Check out these major brand fails from 2015.)

A brand voice is a powerful tool, and you can benefit from using it wisely.

Does my company need a brand voice?

Yes! You may have one that needs to be refined or changed because your company has experienced a major overhaul, or you may be starting a new business that doesn’t have one yet.

Either way, your brand needs a strong voice – and an experienced copywriter can create one for you.

How is a brand voice developed?

Your copywriter or content strategist will talk to you to learn about your business, what makes you tick, and how to help set you apart from competitors with your own distinct voice.

The copywriter may also look at (or help develop) your personas and customer journeys, your competitive landscape, and consider the short- and long-term objectives of your organization.

Every brand has a personality waiting to be discovered, and once the writer begins to define what that is, they can craft its unique voice.

For example, Kate Spade’s brand voice is a natural extension of its products, which are bright, playful, and a little cheeky. Now look at the brand’s content.

No matter where you go – their website, Instagram, or Facebook – the message and tone are consistent and, most importantly, reflective of the products.

A properly developed brand voice does more than reflect who you are – it also reflects who your customers are. It speaks to them in a way they respond best to, creating brand recognition, engagement, and loyalty.

Brand and style guides

So your copywriter has created an amazing brand voice, and you love it. Now what?

The next step is for your copywriter to create a style guide (an essential part of a brand guide), so you can easily replicate your new voice across all of your platforms.

Brand guides and style guides typically include a section on personality of the brand voice, stylistic choices about capitalization, format, etcetera, and specific examples of on-brand and off-brand use.

Your design team will also contribute specifications for logos, typefaces, colors, packaging, and more.

With a finished brand guide in place, you’ll have a complete, one-stop reference to share with any departments that interact with customers: sales and marketing, communications and public relations, and customer service.

With your brand guide helping to keep everyone on the same page, your customers will have a seamless and positive brand experience.

So what are you going to say to them? (We can help you with that.)