Every piece of your brand should have consistency. This is true even in how you speak to your audience. As you continue to get clear on who you are and who you serve you’ll develop your brand’s voice. One that will connect with your customer and reflect the type of brand you are. Who knew there could be so much power in not only what we say, but how we say it?
How to Develop Your Brand’s Voice
Developing your brand’s voice starts with understanding who you are and who you serve. This is important because your voice needs to match the tone of your business. For example, if your bank started using curse words in their copy or even sarcasm for that matter, you’d feel a disconnect and start losing your trust in them. The same is true for your brand. You need to decide if your brand is fun and edgy, serious, smart and articulate, or hip with the cool kids. And part of deciding who your brand is is knowing who they serve. Again, a bank isn’t going to try and be hip with the cool kids because they’re working with the adults. But Nike might want to throw some slang terms in their copy and get edgy because their audience fits with that.
Get clear on who your ideal audience is (you can use this free guide in my freebie library) and then decide who you want to be as a brand.
Define Your List of Appropriate Words
Once you know what the tone of your copy should be it can be helpful to come up with a list of words you want to use over and over again, and words you don’t ever want to use. For example, I might curse in my copy, but I never spell it out. That feels more authentic to who I am. I also want my audience to know that my brand is all about clarity, connection, confidence, being bold, and living out your adventure, so these words and phrases appear often in my copy so that they stick.
Start with a sheet of paper and draw a line down the center. On the left, write down a list of words you want to make sure are used consistently in your copy and on the right list all the words that shouldn’t be in your copy. This could include genres too, like “curse words” or “negative words” if you’re all about encouragement.
Choose Brand Fonts to Match
Amazingly, your voice is shown in the fonts that you choose. While fonts can also take on masculine and feminine attributes for your brand, they are a visual understanding of how fun or serious your brand is. Like all things in your brand, consistency is key. So choose 2-3 fonts that you’ll use throughout your branding and stick with those.
For a brand that’s serious, like the bank example above, you might stick with serifs and san serifs, but if you want to be playful and fun, get a script in there or a handwritten font. My logo is in a fun script but the rest of my fonts are a combination of serif and sans serif fonts that still feel a bit feminine to match my brand feel.
These fonts will be used to help you create graphics for your website or social media, they can also be used in advertising or on your newsletter. So when you pick your fonts stick with them and write them down. You must use the same ones over and over again so that your audience recognizes you without having to look for your name on whatever they’re looking at.
Consistency is Key
You’ve heard me say it and I’ll say it again, consistency is everything when it comes to your brand. Showing up regularly isn’t enough, you need to also be consistent in your branding and your voice. When you’re clear on who you are, your audience will better be able to recognize you without having to think about it. In a saturated market, this is all you can ask for! Define your voice, get clear on the words that are and aren’t a part of it, and then find your go-to fonts that reflect this personality and stick to it.
You’ll see other brands talking in a fun and creative way and wan’t to do that too. Don’t! Stick to the voice you’re deciding on now so that you create clarity for your customers. That will connect with them more than a quick social post with a sarcastic phrase in it that doesn’t sound anything like you.
Once you develop your brand’s voice, your keywords, and the fonts that represent you, put them in your ever-growing brand guide. This should also include things like your mission statement and/or values, your brand colors, and guidelines for the style of photos you want to use in your branding. A brand guide is an important document to have so that you can give clear guidelines to any contracts or employees you hire. Everyone that is working for your brand needs to know what the guidelines are to create consistency throughout your brand.