Every brand has its uniqueness, and all communication message has to reflect it — including the tone of voice. A brilliantly written article with the wrong tone of voice for the target audience may lose its essence.
Whether you’re a writer, a marketer, or a brand owner, you'll need to be intentional and strategic when choosing your tone of voice. There’s a need to understand the audience, the platform, your brand values, and the best way to express your uniqueness.
In this article, we’ll examine what tone of voice is, the difference between brand voice and tone of voice, and essential tips to help you choose your tone correctly. Let’s dive In.
What is Tone of Voice?
The tone of voice refers to how words and language are utilized to communicate style, perspective, and emotions. This includes not only the words themselves, but also the tempo, tone, and volume employed to convey meaning.
It can have significant effects on how a brand is perceived because it can convey a brand's personality and values and establish an emotional connection with its audience. By establishing a consistent tone of voice, a brand can differentiate itself from its competitors, develop stronger relationships with its target audience, and encourage long-term brand loyalty and advocacy.
What is a Brand Voice?
A brand voice is the distinct personality, tone, and communication style that a brand uses to express its identity and connect with its target audience. Through language, content, and overall communication style, the brand's voice expresses its values, beliefs, and mission.
It helps a brand stand out from the crowd by establishing a memorable and identifiable personality that resonates with its target audience. By constantly communicating in a way that corresponds with their expectations and values, it can also assist to develop trust, establishing authority, and fostering great connections with customers.
In creating a brand tone of voice that meets your target audience, you’ll need to consider your business identity, communication goal, preferred style, and more, and apply them across all platforms and touchpoints. You’ll also need to remain consistent in your chosen tone of voice.
After understanding your brand voice, consider the right tone to utilize when writing.
7 Tips For Choosing The Right Tone When Writing
Choosing your brand takes consistent and intentional effort. Consider the following when determining the right tone of voice to use.
1. Brand Values
Undoubtedly, every brand has its unique qualities, and this largely reflects in its mission and values. Your chosen brand voice and tone need to reflect these values.
Answer these questions —What is the purpose of your brand? Why does your brand exist?
What are your brand's goals and objectives?
What are the key attributes of your brand? What's your brand's unique selling point?
What values do you want your brand to embody? What principles and beliefs are important to your brand?
Now it is particularly essential to know your brand values, as it paints a picture of your brand to your audience. Use your brand values to choose a tone that expresses them to your audience.
2. Know Your Audience
When it comes to branding in general, it's impossible to have efficient branding without taking the time to understand your audience. This also matters in choosing your tone of voice in writing pieces. Conduct your research and try to understand the demographics, behavior, and pattern of your audiences.
How does this help? The whole purpose of writing an article for a brand or marketing communication materials is to meet the audience's needs, and possibly convert them into paying customers. By knowing how your audience thinks, it's easier to determine the best tone that suits them.
3. Competitive Analysis
Look at your direct competitors and analyze how your audience adjusts to them. A comprehensive competition analysis will help you understand the best ways to communicate your uniqueness to your audience. You can discover how to spread your communication messages and still maintain your brand identity.
Ensure to consider your competitor's tone, brand personality, and message when doing your competitive analysis.
4. Be Authentic
By all means, avoid imitating another brand. Your tone of voice has to be distinct. It could have similarities with some competitors, but it has to stand out.
The whole point of branding is to create a unique, relatable, and memorable perception of what you offer to your target audience. Without authenticity, you can’t achieve branding. You’ll end up consistently struggling to capture your audience's attention. So ensure to stand out and be distinct in your expression.
5. Choose the Platform
More often than none, your chosen communication platform can influence the tone of voice to use.
Although there’s a typical element of the tone that can remain consistent on all platforms, you’ll also need to tweak it based on the platform.
For instance, LinkedIn typically has a professional tone. If your brand is typically a casual one, you can tweak your tone to be professionally casual. Twitter on the other hand is more casual compared to LinkedIn, and the difference continues in all online and traditional media platforms.
Understand the best way to tweak your tone to suit your communication platform.
6. Audit your Content
Auditing your work is an essential step in building a consistent and successful tone of voice in your writing. You can analyze if your tone of voice is consistent and matched with your brand personality and target audience. Evaluate your existing content, including your website, social media profiles, email newsletters, and other marketing materials.
Assess how well your existing voice and tone connect with your target audience and what you can adjust to better suit them.
7. Be Consistent
It's essential to stay consistent in your tone of voice. Avoid constantly changing your tone, as it will confuse your audience and remove your originality. When your audience is used to a certain tone, changing it out of the blue could become a problem. Just as consistency is essential in other brand elements, it is vital in your tone of voice.
Brand Voice vs. Tone of Voice: What’s the Difference?
Brand voice and tone of voice are two related but different concepts in branding and communication.
Brand voice represents the overall personality, values, and perspective of a brand. It is the foundational element that sets the tone for all communications and interactions with customers. Brand voice is what makes a brand distinct and recognizable, and it should be consistent across all channels and touchpoints.
On the other hand, tone of voice refers to how a brand communicates with its audience. It is the expression of the brand's personality and values through language, word choice, communication style, and emotional tone. While brand voice is consistent and unchanging, the tone of voice can be adjusted depending on the context and the audience. For example, a brand's tone of voice might be more casual and playful in social media posts than in formal marketing materials.
While brand voice is consistent and unchanging, tone of voice can be adapted to fit different contexts and audiences.
Vee’s Final Thoughts
At the early stage of my career as a writer, I also struggled in determining the best tone of voice for each brand. Honestly, it could get confusing if you manage multiple brands as a content marketer, but with the tips in this article, you’ll discover it's a breeze. Always research and understand your values, target audience, and competitors. Also, stay authentic and consistent, and you’ll get the best out of your branding.