Tone can be loosely defined as communication that expresses and priorities the brand’s personality. Finding the tone for your business is important because it determines how customers perceive you and the kind of relationship you will have with them. When they think of you, do they think professionalism, elegance, masculinity or fun? Dark colours and bold language for example, would be more reflective of a men’s cologne brand than of one selling baby products.
1-Provide social proof:
Customer behavior is driven mostly by what others have to say about your business. No matter, if your brand is rated 5-star on review sites like FourSquare or Yelp, people expect to see your website to get more information about the brand. Since prospective buyers are already looking for you online, including customer testimonials on your site is a great way to impress potential buyers and provide social proof.
2- one? Voice? What’s the difference?
Understanding this distinction is easier if you think about your own personal way of speaking. There are certain features (beyond accent) that make you always sound like you, but somehow the way you speak to your boss is very different from the way you speak to your best pal.
The first is your voice; the second is your tone. Voice is always the same. Tone changes to accommodate context.
In business-type terms, you might define your voice as conversational and confident, but these are sliding scales that shift in different scenarios:
- Presenting at a conference:
Confidence in spades and a professional style with a conversational twist
- Mingling in the bar afterwards:
Full-on conversational style with an understated air of confidence
Know that tone is subjective
The current trend is that companies must have a sense of humour in order to appeal to their audience. Tongue-in-cheek tweets have increasingly been popularised by brands such as Old Spice. However forced humour can be awkward for everyone, unless your audience is a fan of dad jokes. Marketers also often advise against sounding too high and mighty. On the contrary, some brands may get away with conveying aggressive confidence within industries that appreciate candour, such as law. Ultimately, the key is to be authentic and reflect your values.
3- Know your target audience.
Knowing the demographic is key to how you will present your brand. Younger people would be more open to excited or casual language. Celebrity news magazines can capitalise on exclamation marks while corporate companies do best to keep things simple. Get into the state of mind of the reader; would they be tired, curious or seeking help when reading your message? Adjust your wording to meet these needs. Additionally, legendary author John Stienbeck advises, “Your audience is one single reader. It helps to pick out one person and write to that one.”
4- Keep it consistent
We are often wary of a person whose moods change as quickly as the weather. In the same way, having a bubbly personality one month and changing to a serious one the next will confuse your audience! Having a credible voice will build trust among your consumers. To avoid extreme variations, all your content creators should be well aware of how the company wants to express itself.