Have you ever seen a person that was just so beautiful and captivating until they open their mouth to speak? How somebody sounds when they talk can drastically change your opinion about them, no matter how good they look. This happens all the time with small business who get a fancy new logo but they don’t spend any time developing the other aspects of their brand such as the tone of voice. Branding goes far beyond a logo. It is made up of everything from your visual representation to the tone of voice you use. What you believe in and how people feel when they interact with you also is part of your brand. Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, is famously quoted a definition that says “your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room." This blog will help you in finding your voice as a business.
Here are 5 questions to ask yourself to help find your voice as a business:
What Is Your Main Message?
What do you stand for? What is the core message or your business? This is a great place to start because it will set the tone of your entire business. Businesses will often communicate this message in the form of a positioning line or slogan. Apple wants to inspire creativity and uses the slogan “Think Different”. Similarly, Nike wants to inspire achievement and uses slogans like the most famously know “Just Do It” will communicate that message.
How Do You Want People To Feel?
What emotions do you want to create in people when they interact with your brand? Most businesses will say something like “I want people to feel taken care of and connected” Those are all great, but the real magic happen when you discover how you want to inspire people. This is different than everybody else and will create a more powerful connection with your buyer personas. These emotions are communicated through every part of your branding but mostly though the tone and words that you use when you communicate with people. So ask yourself, how do you want to inspire people?
What Makes Your Business Unique?
Most brands who are memorable have a unique voice. This is how you get the attention of your buyer personas after all. If you sound like everybody else, then you will probably feel like you are sitting in a room where everybody is yelling the same thing. People are attracted to uniqueness and are more likely to listen to your brand if it sounds different than everybody else. The easiest way to do this is to personify your brand and think of the specific things that make you unique. It can be your core values or your personality, or anything that is different than your competitors. Use this unique brand attribute to create your tone of voice and differentiate yourself from the competition.
What Pronouns Will You Use?
If you thought you didn’t have to worry about grammar any more you’re wrong. When you are finding your voice, you must decide what pronouns you’ll use when your business is speaking. Some brands will talk in the first person using ‘we’ and ‘us’ while others will talk in the third person about their company. Either method can work depending on how you want your brand to sound and be perceived. The important thing is that you pick one and stick to it. Talking in the first person is great for small business as it tends to be more relatable and warmer while the third person is a lot more formal and impersonal, and is usually used by larger corporations.
Ultimately, the goal of finding your voice as a business is to find something that inspires people. Emotions have a huge impact on the decisions that people make, especially when it comes to what they think of your brand. If you are going through the branding process or have hired a branding company to refresh your logo, make sure to spend time on the intangible aspects of your brand as well so that it produces the emotions you want communicates your message in a unique voice.