When you think of an opera singer and a hard rock singer, I’m sure you imagine two completely different voices. Both are singing but in very different styles. And those different styles attract (usually) very different listeners.
Did you know your brand has a voice, too? Everything you send out – from marketing materials to your latest blog post – all create a “voice” that your customers (and prospective customers!) hear. And just like singing styles attract certain listeners, your brand’s voice attracts (or repels) certain types of customers.
So is your current brand voice more like opera or hard rock? Pop or country? Well, you can better understand your brand’s current voice by doing the following:
- Review your current marketing materials, social posts, etc. Collect all the material you’ve recently sent out. If you can print it all out and arrange in on a table, great. Now, what message is it sending? What do you think your customers “hear” when they look at all of this? Is it one voice, or many?
- Ask your customers and employees. What do others think your brand voice is? Ask them what words or feelings come to mind when they think of your brand or read your latest social media posts. (Don’t be surprised if their answers don’t align what you came up with in Step #1.)
Now, if you discover that your voice doesn’t align with what you want it to be, all hope is not lost. Just like Taylor Swift shifted from country to pop (to whatever you call her latest release), you, too, can shift your brand’s voice. Here are some steps we recommend:
- Review your company’s vision and mission. This is why you exist in the first place. What types of customers did you set out to impact? It’s easy to lose sight of this over time, so re-grounding is a good step toward understanding what your voice should be.
- Understand your target customers’ wants and needs. Once you re-ground who you’re trying to service, figure out what resonates with them. Talking in a way that connects with your customers’ needs and challenges will create a voice that attracts the right potential customers. Don’t fall into the trap of talking in ways that make sense to you, but not to your customers.
Now, if you’re not even sure who your target customers are, or if you say that “everyone” is your target customer, that’s a completely different challenge. We’ve said before that being all things to all people is rarely a winning business or marketing strategy. We’ll leave it at that.
Go discover your voice! If you’ve got the right voice for the right audience, maybe your brand can be a superstar.
Lauren Sweeney is the Founder and CEO of Dotted Line Collaborations, a full-service advertising and branding agency solving big brand problems from our headquarters in Richmond, Virginia. When Lauren’s not providing strategic direction for the firm or delivering amazing results for our clients, Lauren is outdoors enjoying all that Richmond has to offer or traveling to a new and exciting destination.
To read more about our firm’s recent work, visit dottedlinecollaborations.com.