Brand voice can be one of the hardest things to figure out and use properly. We see the struggle happen all the time.
People are so wonderfully passionate, vocal, and articulate about their business, customers, or services and products. They can ramble out loud about it forever. Then, they sit down and try to write out those thoughts, and what comes out sounds like a constipated robot.
Brand voice doesn’t come naturally for everyone, and that’s okay. Finding it and using it well in your content might take a bit of trial-and-error and creative thinking.
How do you get that brand voice to flow naturally? Let’s talk about it.
Listen to yourself
No, we don’t mean that in a metaphysical or intuitive way. We mean literally listen to yourself talk so you can hear and process your own voice. Can’t seem to get your web copy to sound like you? Have a friend hop on a Zoom call and ask you questions about what you do, who you serve, and why. Hit the record button!
Need to add some spark to a blog or opt-in you’re creating? Record yourself talking about the content idea. You might find that you can nail down your brand voice if you just talk through an idea out loud.
Want to share more ideas but don’t want to just hit “Go Live” on IG until you have the idea fleshed out? Open your phone’s recording app and just start talking. You’ll naturally get closer to your talking points and essentially practice sounding more “like you.”
Why does this work? Some people just don’t process things or work out ideas through text, and that’s okay! Use the power of technology at your fingertips to do it your own way.
Whatever you decide to do or which recording tools you use, go back and listen to or watch what you said. Write it all down. Read it, review it, edit it for clarity and typos. Then go along your merry way, because you’ve just captured your brand voice.
Bonus points: turn those video or audio recordings (if they’re coherent enough) into a podcast or vlog to create even more content. Then, turn that vlog or podcast into a blog for a double whammy! Amazing, right?
Record a sales or onboarding call
Another thing we use to get a grasp on our clients’ brand voices? Sales calls. You can learn so much from reviewing a call with a new or potential customer.
Ask them what compelled them to reach out to you, sign up for your email list, follow you on social media before finally scheduling a call… All of those answers are very telling about how others view your brand and what your brand makes them feel.
Maybe they find you reassuring and trustworthy. Or they think you sound like you know what you’re talking about. Maybe you kick ass at explaining complex ideas in really simple ways. Or you provide a ton of value that they can’t get from your competitors.
These are all important to know because they tell you what your audience already thinks of you. That’s the brand voice you’ve already got, whether it’s reassuring, authoritative, educational, or unique. You can use what you know to strengthen your existing brand voice, or change it if you want.
We won’t get too far into the nitty gritty details here, but sales calls and marketing are often like two separate worlds for a client or customer. You don’t want your brand voice to sound wildly different between the two. Bridge this gap by maintaining a similar brand voice in both.
That way you have a cohesive brand experience and you don’t risk shocking your new client or customer. You want to reassure them that your initial voice — what drew them to you in the first place — is what they’re gonna get when they book you.
Have a conversation with your business
The point of this exercise is to suss out what your business sounds like, how it talks to your ideal customers, and what feelings it evokes. That’s a surefire way to find your brand voice. Yes, this sounds similar to our first suggestion. But our first tip about recording yourself was to help you work through your thoughts about web copy or a content idea, like a blog.
Think of this technique as a pretend conversation with a client that leads you through your customer journey. It’s kind of like improv comedy or abstract performance art, or something.
We’ll use us as an example here:
“Uncanny Content, I’m having the hardest time figuring out what to write in my email newsletters, post on my blog, or share on social media. I don’t have time to brainstorm, create, and schedule content because I run my own biz and get super overwhelmed. Help!!”
“We gotchu, hypothetical person. We can build a content strategy that works for your audience and meets your biz goals. Plus, we love deadlines and planning ahead. All you have to do is approve what we give you. Let’s do this.”
In this hypothetical conversation, we see that the client runs their own business, knows that they need content help, but doesn’t know what to do or where to start. Uncanny Content steps in, offering solutions with authority, reassurance, and a can-do attitude. We also kept it short and casual, because that’s how we talk IRL.
Do this exercise for your own brand out loud, or if you feel silly, just think it through in your head. Write down how you feel when you answer your pretend client. Take notes on the words you use and how you imagine you’d say them. Those are all elements of your brand voice.
Know your voice so you can talk to your audience
If you’re worried about your brand voice and what people feel when they engage with your content, let us assure you: It takes a lot of work to sound fake. If you are committed to really strengthening your brand voice, you’ll be fine.
With these steps, you can discover a brand voice that sounds natural for your business. With a natural brand voice, you’ll find it easier to write content and talk to your audience. The more you talk to your audience, the more they’ll trust you… and want to give you their money.
Still feeling frustrated about your brand voice? Give us a ring so we can step in and help.