Small Business

Communicating Well: Brand Voice


For a small business, sometimes getting any content out is nothing short of a miracle. After all, you spend your days thinking about your clients before yourselves and next thing you know, months have passed and your own marketing has been neglected.

Perhaps you’re lucky enough to have an in-house marketing professional or an agency telling your story so that you can focus on your line of business. But, if you’re like many business owners, you have probably felt out of sync with your messaging at one point or another.

Developing a consistent brand voice that represents you well is key to an effective communications strategy. Simply put, a brand voice is how your company expresses itself. A thoughtful strategy on brand voice can unify a marketing department of hundreds and at the same time can direct your Vice President of Everything to ensure your business is always represented well.

Some things to consider when developing your brand voice are your style, your tone, and the type of content you’ll be putting out. Take into account who your target audience is and what will appeal to them. For example, if you’re a 20-something entrepreneur who’s trying to reach senior citizens, you’ll need to adjust your brand voice to ensure that you’re building trust with your target audience. This may mean eliminating slang, a bit of formality, and an understanding of your target audience’s use of the internet.

When you think about style in brand voice, once you’ve identified your target, consider:

  • What level of vocabulary will you use? (Are you reaching experts in a field or new parents?)
  • Should you use slang?
  • Should you allow cursing?
  • Should you use contractions?
  • Determine the ideal length of sentences and paragraphs. Is this a scholarly article or a blog post?
  • How substantial should your content be?

Tone is the attitude of your writing. People always pick up on the tone of a piece, even if it’s as short as a digital sign. When you consider tone, think about these things:

  • How formal/informal should your tone be to reach your desired audience?
  • What undertones do you want to send out (enthusiasm? expertise? trust?) and in what ways would you like to do that?
  • What feeling do you want to evoke in your reader?
  • Will you use humor, and in what ways?

These are just a few considerations for developing a brand voice, but if you can answer all of these questions for your business you’ll be well on your way to managing a cohesive brand voice on all channels of communication.

And, if this feels a little daunting, let our experts help. Since communication is our business, we can help you develop and launch an expert strategy. Get in touch and allow us to guide you.

Colleen Cook

Colleen Cook

Colleen Cook works full-time as the Director of Operations at Vinyl Marketing in Ashland, Ohio, where she resides with her husband Mike and three young daughters. She's an insatiable extrovert who enjoys finding reasons to gather people.