How to Create a Brand Voice on Social
By Inspira Marketing
April 28, 2022
By Inspira Marketing
April 28, 2022
Before marketing moved online, a brand’s voice was constricted to its budget. Its audience, especially for small businesses, was generally in its physical vicinity—either with hyper-localized marketing material like building signs, regional ones like billboards, and maybe national ones like newspapers and TV.
Pandora’s box cracked open with digital ads, then became a nuclear explosion of global marketing with the introduction of social media’s ad features. Now, marketing is harder to define, far more fluid, and can be as easy to grasp as a handful of sand.
Perhaps the most important component of any marketing strategy is your brand voice; it serves as a launch point for any initiative or goal you may develop. So let’s dig into the brand voice: what it is, why you need it, and how to use social to drive it to the moon.
Brand voice is your brand’s anchor. It represents the collective tone of the brand, made up of all the little ways you present it. It comes down to the words you choose and the way you speak, the attitudes you maintain and the vibes you want to portray, the personality of your target demographic and the point of view of your copy.
To put it simply, the brand voice is the character of your brand. And it doesn’t stop at text; we’ll look at the role visual identity plays in brand voice later on.
Brand voice isn’t important . . . it’s vital. Your brand won’t make it online without a voice to steer its direction. In the world of e-commerce, for example, without a brand voice, your store is just a bunch of products on a screen—but with your brand voice present at every customer-facing turn, your store goes from forgettable to add-to-cart. Brand voice is the language we use to communicate with customers that allows us to do more than bang pots and pans together into the void.
So, why do you need a brand voice? Because it acts as the steering wheel to guide the ship of your business.
Creating a brand voice is going to take a concerted effort; you can’t just decide on an angle, let your team know, and hope for the best. It’s going to take planning, and we’ll show you just how to do that.
It probably doesn’t need to be said but we’ll say it anyway: the first step is to get to know your customers.
How old are they? What’s their gender identity? Where are they from? What do they like to spend their free time doing? How’s their relationship with their mother?
The last question is a joke, but the rest are important (unless you run a mother-daughter-specific therapy business or something, in which case, the last question is also important). Get to know your customers based on who’s following you, who you make the most sales to, and who you built your product for. These things aren’t always as aligned as you may think and pulling some Facebook data or running a few polls in Twitter or Instagram Stories might paint a more intriguing picture than you can imagine.
Now this is the meat of finding and speaking up with your brand voice—one of the best things you can do in this process is to develop an entire persona that represents your brand. And we mean this literally, build a person from scratch. Picture what they look like, what they sound like, where they’re from, what they like to do, what their house looks like, what kind of job they have, how they speak, how they make dinner, you name it.
For example, let’s say your brand is a men’s watch company. It’s high-end, it’s expensive, and it’s ideal for businessmen on the go. The persona that represents this brand is, let’s say, 50 years old.
He’s an executive at a large company you’ve probably heard of. He drives a Porsche, lives in a large house in a nice neighborhood with his wife and two middle school-aged kids. He spends lots of time on the golf course or running; he’s out of town for work at least a week out of the month; and he has a closet full of dark, tailored suits.
His voice is deep, his tone calm and collected and he just oozes confidence. He reads the New York Times every day on his iPad at the table. Jelly beans are his secret vice. He’s usually late to dinner during the week, but he can handle the barbecue like nobody’s business on Saturday evenings in the summertime. He always makes it to his kid’s sports games. His name is probably Richard.
We could go on and on and on with these details, and if we were talking about our own brand, we would. The more details you flesh out, the easier it will be to bring their voice to life.
Once you’ve created your brand persona, you can jump into their perspective when you’re doing anything for the brand—be it writing copy for social, responding to DMs, choosing an asset to go onto a new flier, or meeting with a new client.
Think of it this way, once you have this persona, everything you do for the brand should go through the filter of their mind. Use them to help you determine what your branding will look like, the character of your product shoots, the vibe of your Instagram feed. At every point of your company’s journey, you have to ask yourself WWOBPD (What Would Our Brand Persona Do)? It’s a long initialism, so write that down.
Putting this voice together is only one step on the winding road to a strong digital footprint. If you’ve already begun to do so and find yourself stuck at how to portray it online, we’re always here to help.
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