It’s been a minute since we focused on brand voice, friends. Or more specifically shared examples of great brand voice and talked about why they’re so great.
“Perfect, hilarious literary memes. They’re one of my favorite social accounts ever.” — Jess
First up, we have one of my (Jess) favorite social media accounts ever: SparkNotes. Fellow elder millennials, did you ever imagine that SPARKNOTES would become a source of smart, high-quality entertainment in the future? Neither did I.
Check out their Instagram or Twitter, and you’ll find references to classic literature like Pride and Prejudice or Romeo and Juliet combined with screenshots from beloved shows like New Girl and Our Flag Means Death.
What I love about their brand voice is that they clearly know their literary shit. I mean, you need to have deep and detailed knowledge of the stuff in order to make such incredible memes. They’re not afraid to be silly, get dark, and joke around with their followers in the comments. And it never feels like they’re trying too hard to be funny.
P.S. SparkNotes always addresses their audience as “Old Sports.” As in, The Great Gatsby. It’s just too good.
Who Gives a Crap
“They aren’t afraid to state the obvious in what people use their products for.” — Chynna, Ops Manager
Next up, we have a toilet paper and paper products company recommended by not just one of our team members, but two!
Are you tired of cartoon bears acting like wiping their asses is the best thing they’ve ever done? Sick of toilet paper math that doesn’t make sense? Like, how TF are all brands different when it comes to the number of rolls, sheets per roll, one-ply or two-ply? ARGH.
Meet Who Gives a Crap, an eco-friendly paper brand that doesn’t bullshit their audience when it comes to what they sell. They’re straightforward, but fun. Their branding is colorful and their brand voice is tongue-in-cheek. Their Instagram bio sums it up by saying “Good for your bum, great for the world.”
Oh, and they build toilets in developing areas and make sustainability a core part of their mission. As our Project Manager Josie said, “It’s a community that is doing something for the greater good beyond just wiping their asses.”
Amen to that.
Milwaukee Public Library
“I did not get a quote from Josie about MPL, who nominated this brand voice. But they’re fantastic. Check out their TikTok.” — Jess
As much as I love ‘em, libraries aren’t known for being…on top of current trends. But Milwaukee Public Library is changing all that. They gained tens of thousands of followers on social media in a matter of weeks and enjoyed millions of views on their videos.
Funny, niche, and trendsetting, Milwaukee Public Library’s TikTok is where you’ll find hilarious memes about library resources and the library itself. Like their gaming spaces, drive-thrus, meeting rooms, green roofs, rare books, and so much more. It’s not surprising that the library has seen an increase in users of the resources that they promote.
MPL goes to show you that if you know your stuff and commit to your chosen brand voice, you can make anything interesting and engaging for your audience.
Evil Queen Candles
“I think they do ‘attitude’ without being annoying or trying too hard.” — Amanda, Lead Writer
As you’ve seen from our list so far, having an edgy sense of humor or a bit of an attitude can create a memorable brand voice. But — speaking from experience with our own brand voice — it’s not easy.
Some brands who attempt this kind of voice don’t push the envelope enough, so their voice falls flat. Other brands go too far and come off as hateful and cynical. It takes a strong sense of your brand (and maybe a little trial and error) to find that sweet spot.
Sassy, positive, and edgy, Evil Queen Candles are “the original candles with attitude,” as they state in their Instagram bio. Their candles just ooze their brand voice with names like “Exhale the Bullshit,” “Stolen Hoodie,” “Damn It’s Early,” and “Moody Bitch.”
We’d love to keep discussing companies we admire for their brand voice, branding, and overall vibes, but I’ll stop here and leave you with some honorable mentions.
- Getty Museum: Fun, meme-y, and educational
- Slack: Team-focused, customer-focused, helpful
- Warby Parker: Trendy, lighthearted, artsy
Tell us, what’s your favorite example of great brand voice? Tag us, DM us, or leave us a random comment on a random post on our Instagram.