In today’s day in age, the key for businesses to be successful on social media is to establish and maintain an authentic brand “voice.” What exactly does this mean and how do you go about implementing your own unique voice into your social media posts and responses? Read on for our tips and advice.
What is a Brand Tone of Voice?
Your brand tone of voice emulates how your company/brand communicates with your existing and potential customers. Brand tone of voice represents how you want people to receive your message. Think of your company’s tone of voice as your company’s personality. The words chosen, sentence structure, and even the photos you choose to share all apply to this. Your tone may vary depending on whether you are trying to sell products, make customers read your blog, invite others to an event, or wishing a well and safe weekend.
Whatever the case, keep it fluid but also stay cohesive for your brand. Think of it this way: Every single time you write, design, talk, post, respond, and connect with others, you are exercising your brand voice.
The tone should certainly reflect your company’s goals and values but does not necessarily need to hold the tone of a corporate website. It is OK to let loose and have some fun with jokes, emojis, and memes if that’s appropriate for your brand. You want your community to feel like they can have a personal relationship with you; someone who understands their needs and concerns, not a robot. Creating a tone that relates to your community on a personal level will ensure long term success.
Why Does This Matter?
Brand voice matters because of the infinite number of companies, products, and innovations. You can easily blend in with your competition or even that Amazon product that looks exactly like yours, except it’s 20 dollars cheaper. It’s important to show why your brand is superior to all others, and the best way to do this is through relatability and individuality.
Most people are sick of supporting the big, impersonal corporations. They want to support companies with good intentions, great values, and who care about their customers. You can easily convey this to your audience through the tone you choose on social media.
In today’s world, social media is the first place most people take when discovering a new company. They skim your pictures, comments, and reviews. They look for how you handle complaints. Make a great first impression so they don’t want to walk away.
One very crucial question your business should ask itself and answer is: “How do we stand out from the rest?”
You don’t want to be seen as just another run-of-the-mill business. You want to stand out from the crowd.
Tips for Creating a Social Media Brand Voice
We’ve established the what and the why. Now it’s time for some tips on how you can create a brand voice across your social media posts and responses.
Find Your Personality:
- What are our brand values?
- What sets us apart from our competition?
- What do we want our audience to say about us?
- What don’t we want our audience to say about us?
This first step is arguably the most important because it is what allows you to zero in on the voice that you will use for everything. A fun way to better envision your businesses’ personality, is to imagine it as a mashup of a couple of celebrities or public figures.
Here’s an example: Oprah Winfrey + Lucille Ball
In other words, entrepreneurial and progressive + entertaining and hilarious.
Use this method as a base to build upon. Now that you know that you want to portray both professionalism and touch of comedy, think of some more adjectives that would be used to describe your businesses and the personality you want to present.
Bold, innovative, friendly, and upbeat.
Keep these characteristics in mind at all times, when you write blogs, respond to emails, and so forth – whenever and wherever you have the chance to be seen, heard, or noticed as a brand.
What is jargon? Jargon is words or expressions which are used by a particular profession that are difficult for others to understand. The last thing you ever want to do as a brand is alienate customers who are not immediately able to understand what you are saying. Write the way you talk in order to sound real and relatable to your audience.
Avoid writing sensational headlines to catch the attention of your audience. Too many brands do this by writing things like “best,” “top,” and “only.” While people are likely to click based on these terms, it will be short-lived if they see that you cannot deliver on the headline. You never want to seem “fake” to your audience.
Authenticity matters for long-term success so it’s best to be truthful and honest. People are more likely to buy based on their lifestyle, mood, and emotions rather than attention-grabbing features. Connect with your audience and they will be more likely to stick around for the long-haul.
Everything you do and share is part of your brand so ensure that your tone of voice is consistent across all of your social media platforms. Regardless of whether you have one person posting to Facebook, and another person posting to Instagram, your audience should never be able to tell the difference because your company’s voice and tone should consistent.
Ensure that your team is on the same page at all times in terms of sounding and speaking consistently as your brand. To do so, answer these questions together:
While posting is important, responding is even more important. You never want to be the brand that only talks and never listens. It is imperative to the success of your business to keep a worthwhile conversation going with your audience. This means answering questions, resolving conflicts, and thanking customers as often as you can.
A wide variety of social monitoring and social listening tools are available to help with this. Some of our favorites are Sprout Social and Hootsuite.
Knowing first-hand what your audience thinks and feels (good and bad) about your products, services, and overall business is a powerful tool for maintaining your brand’s reputation and growing your business.
So how is your business showing up on social media? What does your voice say about you? Always remember that everything you do and say is part of an ongoing conversation with your audience. Allow your business to be perceived consistently in a deliberate way for ultimate success.