5 Ways To Strike the Right Tone in Your Content

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Whether you’re a small business or a large company, your business will benefit from adopting the perfect tone to suit your audience. Tone expresses your company’s values, shows clients who you are, helps you to build trust and attracts people to your products and services. Striking the right tone makes your content more readable too, which will improve user experience and page rankings.

So, it’s clear that communicating with your audience with the right tone of voice is important – and finding it isn’t as difficult as you think.

1. Let Your Personality Shine through Your Content

Your brand personality is unique to your business and striking the right tone will show it.

If you’re a fun brand, your tone will convey that to your audience; you can rely more on light-hearted and quirky content, for example, and you should be chattier when you engage with people – choose a more active voice, shorter sentences and contractions as well.

Many brands do it right. Virgin, for example, is a massive company, but its personality and tone are centred on being bold, chatty and fun – and it works. People appreciate that a big brand like this is approachable and speaks their language.

If you’re struggling to find your tone, consider your personality so you can promote your best self.

For a great example of how tone can help your business’ personality come through, take a look at Wendy’s, a US fast food store. The brand is fun, bold and cheeky, and known for its ‘savage’ comments against competitors. Wendy’s also makes use of puns and made-up words (as well as emojis) to convey its messages on social media. Wendy’s is clearly not shy about letting its personality shine and this has been a successful strategy because people enjoy engaging with the brand.

2. Consistency is Key for Your Tone of Voice

A good tone of voice is also consistent.

By ensuring that everyone who represents your brand communicates in the same way with your audience, your message will be in the same tone at all times. This leads to consistent branding and to a boost in confidence that your brand is steady and dependable.

Whether you’re writing blogs, sending out newsletters or creating company videos, your tone must remain consistent if you want it to be recognisable by your audience.

3. Adjust Your Tone Depending on the Platform You Use

Another way to find the tone that best works for you, is to make sure it fits with the social media platforms you’re using.

While your tone should be consistent, it should also adapt to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or any other channel. This is because platforms have different audiences and different expectations, and they also work very differently.

You can add up to 30 hashtags on Instagram (though you should pick only a few to avoid looking spammy) while you’re better off not adding any to Facebook. Instagram is highly visual, so images work better there when compared to Twitter, for example. Twitter has a post limit of 280 characters, so brands aren’t expected to write huge blocks of text. Being concise and straight to the point is preferred.

When adapting your tone to each platform, keep your target audience in mind and what they expect to see from your posts.

Like and share social media. Hands holding smartphone with social media network icons. Marketing concept.

4. Choose a Distinctive Tone

First of all, think about who your audience is. If you work with corporate clients, you should adopt a more formal tone; if, on the other hand, you own a clothing store, it’s better to choose a tone that connects with people on a more personal level, so aim for friendly or chatty.

So, knowing your audience will help you to find the perfect tone and whether or not to cut out jargon or techy language. It helps to know exactly what you want to say and the image you want to present. Remember that your clients might not speak your language, so keep it simple and easy to read – and understand!

Once you have this nailed down, you then want to make sure that the tone sets your brand apart from your competitors. It needs to be distinctive and unique to you so that your customers (and potential client base) can immediately recognise it. This, in turn, will build trust and help you to develop stronger relationships with your audience.

Greggs does this very well. Its tone is fun and chatty and refers to British culture with a great sense of humour. People enjoy replying to Greggs and re-tweeting its content, which is fantastic for brand awareness. Another thing that Greggs does well is to engage with public figures, as was the case with Piers Morgan and the famous vegan sausage roll ‘controversy’. The public banter actually helped to sell the product!

5. Be Authentic to Your Brand

It goes without saying, the best thing you can do for your brand is, to be authentic and honest. Your tone should reflect who you are. If you’re not a quirky brand, don’t try to be! Choose the tone that reflects your values as they are, otherwise, you will risk turning your audience away.

People have certain expectations. If you work with lawyers, the language should be formal and authoritative, but if you’re targeting teenagers, you want your content to be fun and conversational.

Don’t try to be something you’re not.

Dove is a great example. Its values focus on responsibility and on empowering its customers, and that’s easy to see in its tone. Dove is all about positivity and building self-esteem and confidence and uses language which reflects that ethos.

Dove tone of voice

Summary

The tone of voice you use can be a powerful tool and it shouldn’t be overlooked. Find a recognisable tone that will personify your brand’s values, and keep it consistent across all your marketing efforts – your audience will find it easier to follow your brand this way.

As part of our approach, we define the brand and tone of voice of our clients to ensure all our content marketing efforts are consistent with the clients. SQ Digital helps clients find the perfect tone that connects with their audience. Feel free to get in touch to find out more.

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