I’m Tyler, and I have voices in my head.
Brand voices that is. Optimistic, luxurious, fearless, silly — there are so many voices fighting for my attention it can be overwhelming. Brands develop a voice to tell a story, sell an image, and ultimately influence my thoughts of them. So the selfless girl I am, I created this blog to help get them out of my head and into yours.
You may be thinking “that’s all well and good, Tyler, but why would I want to read a blog about brand voices?” GREAT QUESTION! My answer is a two part-er:
1. You are kind of interested in figuring out what brand voice is, and once you stumbled across this gem, you thought “eh, why not.”
2. You want to see how successfully I can replicate each voice in its designated entry (ie. the minimalist entry will be written in a minimalist tone etc.). Now I don’t want to say I’m definitely going to write like that…but I’ll try. Please be kind.
But before we jump head (or…cursor?) first into types of voices, let’s dish about what actually goes into developing a brand’s voice. Spoiler, it’s a lot more than it seems from the consumer’s perspective.
Just as our parents instilled values into us from infancy, so too do brands. For consistency, brands should align their voice with their company values and missions. Does a brand aim to be accessible for people of all races, genders, and levels of ability? Best avoid a minimalist voice that could cause exclusion.
After determining a general idea of the type of voice that is appropriate for the brand, it’s time to specify its core personality. This is a collection of adjectives that answers the question, “what do we sound like?”. Is the brand thoughtful? Bold? Adventurous? Human?
Now it’s time to get down and dirty with the details. Brands must decide on semantics like the types of words, phrases, and even spelling and grammar to use. So if a brand decides that “funny” is one of its key personality traits, now’s the time to determine what jokes are fair game and what others to avoid. Sarcasm or dad jokes? Self-deprecating or potty humor?
All this planning (hopefully) culminates in a consistent and well developed voice that a brand’s customer base is receptive to.