Conveying Your B2B Brand’s Unique Voice

Expressing Your B2B Brand's Distinctive Voice

Including a section on brand voice in your style guide is vital. This is a core directive for everyone involved in internal and external communication, covering everything from your website to marketing avenues, sales proposals, training resources, and content for onboarding new staff and customers.

Guiding the Creation of Your B2B Brand’s Voice
To assist content creators within and outside your organization, offering explicit instructions on the desired tone is essential. A common choice is a ‘Business casual’ approach, but providing more detailed guidance is important to capture your brand’s essence effectively.

When shaping your brand’s identity, you likely identified certain characteristics or key phrases that define your brand – like being a pioneer in innovation, a paragon of reliability, or a dynamic force of change and support. Your communications should embody these traits across various platforms. Similar to how visual elements evoke emotions, your language and mental imagery should be consistent across all your touchpoints.

Some brands take an extra step by creating lists of specific words and terms to incorporate into their messaging. Others use a consistent theme or ‘angle’ for their content, like emphasizing trust and security (‘you’re safe with us’), using sports metaphors to signify speed and success, or even employing space-related terms (‘out of this world’) to highlight their brand tone.

Consider providing practical examples of what to do and what to avoid. Show contrasts between your previous communication style and the new voice that better represents your brand. For example, shifting from referring to your company as ‘it’ to ‘we’ and ‘us’ can make a big difference. For brands focused on customer experience (CX), using direct and personal language like ‘you’ instead of ‘organizations’ or ‘decision-makers’ can be more engaging.
Empower Your Team to Contribute Their Voices

While your communications must mirror your brand identity, there’s a noteworthy exception, particularly relevant for IT companies involved in service delivery or product innovation.

Suppose your team’s qualities – expertise, skills, creativity, approachability, reliability, and helpfulness – are key to your unique value proposition (UVP). In that case, allowing them to use their professional voices is beneficial.

Allow team members with key qualities to use their professional voices.

Content like thought leadership articles, executive interviews, and expert blogs must sound like they’re written by real individuals, not just your marketing team. This doesn’t mean experts have to write these pieces themselves.

Content published under someone’s name should genuinely reflect their voice.

When ghostwriting for these ‘authors’, develop keywords that align with their unique styles, particularly when the writing is outsourced. This could range from innovative, enthusiastic, and excited to frank, honest, trustworthy, or even measured, conservative, and precise.

Avoid imposing a strict ‘brand noose’ on your active bloggers. While it’s important to include brand voice guidelines in your social media policy, over-editing their content to the point where it loses its authenticity and dynamism should be avoided. Your team will be more valuable in engaging their peers in their natural style than just echoing a polished company narrative.

Bringing It All Together
Once you’ve crafted the voice section of your brand style guide, review the entire guide to ensure consistency in tone and language throughout, including the introduction and visual design examples. This will result in a comprehensive, unified representation of your brand’s identity across all facets.

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