What is tone of voice?
Your tone of voice is a fundamental part of your brand identity. It governs the language you use to communicate with your customers and sets the benchmark for all audience-facing written or verbal content your business produces.
Whether it’s a blog post, a marketing email, a website landing page, an instagram story or a paid search ad, the words you use, whenever you’re speaking to directly to your customers, need to be consistent across every content channel your business engages with.
Why your company needs a tone of voice
In business, it’s not always what you says that matters. How you deliver that message also has a significant influence on how customers respond and act, and that’s where your company tone of voice comes in.
Establishing your tone of voice sets out clear principles for how your business speaks to its customers in all written and verbal comms it produces. It ensures that every content creator writing for your business applies the exact same style, language and tone to their work, so there’s no disparity between how your company sounds across the different platforms it uses (something that can damage trust and alienate consumers).
How to find your brand’s tone of voice
Your tone of voice is one of the greatest assets your brand has to convey its personality, but it’s also your main way of communicating with customers, so it’s vital that how you speak aligns with language your target audience uses.
When finding your tone of voice it’s important to spend some time getting to know your customer; specifically how they behave, the brands they buy into, and the types of content they consume. Doing this research will provide valuable insights when it comes to shaping the way your business communicates in written form.
While it’s vitally important to research your target audience when finding your tone of voice, this shouldn’t be your only consideration. The values your business stands for, as well as the specific market sector it operates in, also have a bearing on how your tone of voice should sound. If you’re a funeral director for instance, your tone of voice should convey empathy and come across as sympathetic, professional and caring, to inspire trust in your services. A travel brand that targets young backpackers, by contrast, can afford to be more vibrant, fun, informal and inspiring in the way they communicate.
These two examples demonstrate the importance of establishing a tone of voice that connects with your customer in a positive way, but is also appropriately pitched to the nature of your business.
The importance of finding your tone of voice
How your business speaks to its customers can have a profound effect on its ability to drive website traffic, convert trust, and grow its profits.
These things are all rooted in the way you communicate with your audience, so agreeing a tone of voice is one of the first exercises you should invest time in, before you attempt to engage with your customer, on or offline, on any marketing channel.
Remember, your tone of voice should be consistent across all communication touch points your business uses, no matter who in your organisation writes the content. This consistency is key to building a brand that inspires trust, loyalty and engagement, all of which are integral to driving sales and boosting profits.