HOW TO DEFINE YOUR TONE OF VOICE USING YOUR BRAND STORY
Well hello there, I’m back with a brand new blog and this week I want to talk to you all
about your tone of voice, and more importantly how you can define it for your brand. I’m
sure you’ve heard a lot, and read a lot about tone of voice, and today I want to chat to you
about ways to define and refine yours. Why? Because it’s absolutely key to connecting with
your ideal client and building that famous know, like, trust factor. That’s why.
Just like the rest of your branding, your tone of voice needs to be on point across every
single touch point. So, whether we’re talking a social post, a proposal document, your
business cards, your website, emails and even your Facebook lives – yeah, that’s right, your
tone is about more than just what you write, you need to nail it. And just like the rest of
your branding, it takes time. It’s a journey, and it will evolve as you work on it, until it really
grabs your ideal client’s attention.
Now the question is, how do you work out your tone of voice, especially if you’re not a VA
or a copywriter? Well, in my opinion, the best place to start is your brand story. So how do
you do that? Well, let’s get into it…
WHAT’S YOUR STORY?
As I said above, what better place to start than with your story? You know it inside out, and
it’s your experiences, and your personality that will really connect with your audience. They
will buy into the things you’ve done, the experiences that have brought you to the moment
when you launch, and your future goals.
Start by writing out your brand story and include everything from who you are, to what you
do, why you’re doing it and how you’re going to do it. It might be long to start with, but
don’t worry about that. It will become the foundation for much of your storytelling,
messaging and point of view on your industry. So my advice would be to get it all out and
then refine, and the way you do that is what I’m going to come onto next.
It’s your story, so tell it your way. Always remember that you’re the special ingredient that
will make your brand a success. Your energy, your drive and your ideas will always be at the
So don’t try to be something you aren’t or use words you don’t normally use; just write the
way you always do. There is no need to over complicate things, and some of the most
successful brands use simple, natural, everyday language. It will also make your life easier
because you won’t spend time and energy trying to write or be something you’re not.
Most importantly, in the modern, digital age people are craving real connections, with real
people more than never before. So creating an honest, and authentic tone of voice is a
perfect, and relatively simple way to stand out from the competition.
RELEVANCY IS KEY
I keep speaking about your brand story and your personal story, but it’s important to
remember that your ideal client won’t be interested in your whole life story. You’ll know
what makes them tick, so make sure everything you include is tailored to them. It’s all about
using your experiences to grab their attention, engage them and connect with them on an
emotional level in the fastest way possible.
Defining what’s relevant is also a great way to edit what you have. By getting super-sharp on
super-relevant parts of your life, you’ll end up crafting a story which is succinct and easily
digestible by anyone reading it. And that is absolutely crucial to a successful tone of voice.
Make your points, but don’t go overboard with long, difficult to follow sentences. We live in
a world where everyone is extremely time-poor, so you need to do everything you can to
maintain your ideal client’s attention.
TALK ABOUT IT
I’m a big believer in the power of speech, especially the way it helps you build connections
with people. That’s why your Facebook Lives and IG stories are so important. But it’s also a
great way to shape and mould your tone of voice. Why? Because whenever you speak, you
use language and sentences that come naturally to you. There’s no delete button or copy
and paste. You speak your mind, and you deliver everything in a way that is unique to you.
So, when you’ve written your story, why not try reading your story aloud? Just imagine
you’re telling a friend or a family member. I can almost guarantee that the way you tell it
will be different to the way it’s written. It could be as simple as losing a few words here and
there, or changing some words for those that feel more natural. But maybe it’s something
much bigger, like sentence structure.
What I would do is, record your next read, you can use voice memo on your phone, and
listen to it back with what you’ve written in front of you. Make a note of where they differ.
I’m talking about pauses, or the moment you emphasise a certain word, or if you pose
questions and then answer them. From there you can tailor what you’ve written to match.
The more you do this, the more you’ll start to see a considered, but natural tone of voice
DO YOUR RESEARCH
By the time it comes to tone of voice you’ll already know your ideal client inside and out.
You’ll know their age, what they do, where they like to hang out, and how you can help
them. Chances are you’ll also know what they like to read, right? It could be magazines,
websites, or even social accounts they follow but whatever it is, you’ll know the tones of
voices that are already grabbing their attention. So use that to your advantage.
Check out the mags, visit the sites, follow the accounts. Compare what they’re saying, to
what you’re saying and then refine your story again. Don’t copy, it still needs to be
authentic you, but it can definitely inform the way you tell your story to your audience.
So, there you have 5 key ways to define your tone of voice through your brand story. And if
you apply them all, you should end up with something sharp, engaging and effective that
provides the foundation for the rest of your storytelling – whether that’s a social post, or a
Facebook Live, a note inside the packaging you send a client or even a simple email.
I want to leave you with one final thought, and that’s to say that your tone of voice is a
journey just like your branding. So, if you’re not 100% happy with it straightaway, don’t
panic. Just refine it. Keep chipping away until you’re happy, and it feels as natural to you as
possible. Then you just need to practice. Practice, practice, practice. Write your social posts,
write your blogs (not just because they’re great for SEO), go Live and listen back to it.
That’s how you’ll really find your voice and keep it consistent across every touch point, and
that’s when you create that lasting connection with your ideal client
P.s. if you’re looking to employ a VA or a copywriter for social, blogging or day-to-day
business make sure they are 100% clear on what your tone of voice is. You will only create
an authentic and personal tone of voice, if it sounds like you, so make sure they can adapt,
and really deliver, or everything will be out of line, and your branding could suffer.