Your business and brand are more than just a pretty logo, website design, and colors. Your brand is the entire experience you emulate for your audience and clients. And one key aspect of building a successful and memorable personal brand is a cohesive brand voice.
Your brand voice is the language, tone, style, and messaging you use to communicate consistently with your audience. Not only does your brand voice give you a clear, consistent runway when creating content for your brand, it’s also a way for your business to differentiate from competitors and build connections with your audience.
Steps to Create a Brand Voice
If you want to create a consistent brand voice, there are a few key steps to follow.
Step 1: Define your brand values
Before you can consider creating a brand voice, you need to define your brand values. These are the guiding principles that shape your brand’s identity and message, and they will definitely influence your communication style and tone. Think about what your brand stands for, your mission, your vision, and your unique selling proposition.
Once you’ve clearly defined your brand values, you can use them to guide your messaging, positioning, and communication style.
Step 2: Identify your target audience
Your brand voice isn’t random, it should be tailored to your target audience because ultimately your voice will attract a specific type of client. Your brand voice should resonate with your audience and create a sense of familiarity and trust.
Step 3: Analyze your competitors
This step isn’t to be mistaken for copying your competitors but for getting a sense of what your industry is using, what’s working, and what doesn’t and gives you insight on how you can further differentiate yourself from the market.
Step 4: Determine your tone of voice
Your brand tone should reflect your audience and values. A few examples of brand tone could be…
- Friendly and approachable
- Authoritative and professional
- Fun and enthusiastic
- Bold and assertive
- Empathetic and caring
Step 5: Choose your language and vocabulary
Once you’ve chosen your brand tone, you can choose words and phrases that associate with that tone. You can also select words or phrases that will absolutely not be associated with your brand. Your language can even be as specific as the emojis your brand will use.
Pro-tip: It’s best to avoid using technical terms or jargon if your audience isn’t familiar with them.
What Happens Next?
Once you’ve completed steps 1-5, you can put these in a document known as a brand voice guide. It’s a document that holds all of this information for yourself and anyone you decide to hire, so no matter who is working on your content, it’s clear and consistent as to how your brand is supposed to communicate and sound across all platforms.
Your brand voice guide is a living, breathing document. Don’t think of your brand voice as something you’re supposed to stick with forever, but as something that can grow and evolve as you do.
Pro-tip: Don’t be afraid to test and refine your voice to ensure it resonates with you and your audience.
Developing a Content Strategy for Your Brand Voice
Once you begin to build these business foundations, everything becomes so much easier. Your content strategy is just an extension of everything you’ve already been creating.
Ask yourself; does it make sense to be on Instagram? Facebook? TikTok? LinkedIn? What makes the most sense for your brand voice? Where will your audience resonate with your brand?
Determine Your Brand Archetype
Another helpful resource for creating your brand voice from scratch is determining your brand archetype. Carl Jung created the 12 Jungian brand archetypes to identify different brands easily.
Each archetype is associated with different characteristics that may help you determine what you most resonate with.
The archetypes are divided into 4 different categories based on their ultimate goal.
- Leave a legacy
- Explore spirituality
- Provide structure
- Pursue connection
Below you’ll find each of the archetypes and a few brands associated with each.
Let’s start with the brand archetypes associated with leaving a legacy.
- Outlaw; Virgin, Harley Davidson
- Magician; Disney, Coca-Cola
- Hero; Nike, Adidas
Next are the archetypes associated with exploring spirituality.
- Innocent; Dove, Aveeno
- Sage; Google, BBC
- Explorer; Jeep, Patagonia
Providing structure archetypes…
- Creator; Apple, Lego
- Ruler; Rolex, Louis Vuitton
- Caregiver; WWF, Toms
And finally, pursuing connection brand archetypes…
- Lover; Chanel, Victoria’s Secret
- Jester; M&Ms, Old Spice
- Everyman; Target, Ikea
If there are any brands you relate to whether above or in your everyday life, research what brand archetype you think they are as this will help you establish your own and ultimately help you in crafting your unique brand voice.
If you want to take this process a step further and write your brand story, check out this blog: How to Craft a Brand Story
About The Author
Rachel Gogos is a multi-passionate entrepreneur with a strong desire to help people by creating strong personal brands and businesses. She’s personally launched dozens of books, e-products, and services; and hundreds of products and services with her clients. She started her career at the United Nations headquarters in New York City, where she helped create the look and feel for the organization’s first website.
Today, in her current role running brandiD, Rachel channels over 15 years of marketing and communications experience into each and every website for brandiD’s clients.
And check out her book, Build Your Brand: The Distinctive Guide to Soul-Based Marketing. It will help you uncover your personal brand.