Don’t use that tone!

How tone of voice creates maximum engagement


When writing content, your tone of voice should be a fundamental consideration. Ask yourself, who are you writing for? How do you want your audience to perceive you? Are you sending mixed messages? Such soul-searching will help you determine the correct tone of voice across all company content.


Why is tone of voice so important?

Yes, a consistent brand and engaging content are crucial ingredients for blogs, websites, social media and promotional literature, but without the most appropriate tone of voice for your business, your hard work can become almost redundant, or at the very least, confusing.


Business doesn’t have to be serious!

A common mistake is to assume that all business content should be corporate in tone, because business is serious… business!

If your business offers a professional service that requires content to be “to the point” and informative, then no, humour and witticisms wouldn’t be appropriate. But – and this is where content often misfires – if your business model is on trend and aimed at lively enterprises or quirky individuals, a corporate tone won’t connect with the majority of the target audience.

Tone of voice as a sales tool

Using the most suitable tone of voice can open an astonishing number of doors that would otherwise remain tightly shut. It shouldn’t be underestimated. Reading content is a remote activity, so tone of voice humanises your business and draws your ideal clients and contacts in. Using your tone of voice to make your offering believable also builds trust.

Tone of voice as a powerful sales tool is perfectly demonstrated in the content found on the Innocent Drinks© website, blogs, product descriptions and packaging. Written in an informal, funny, conversational tone, the message is consistent across all content – we are a fun business that is serious about its products. The relationship with the consumer builds through the consistency of their branding, which encourages interaction on social media and other platforms.

The same tone of voice would not be appropriate when promoting high end products where the tone of voice should reflect tantalising exclusivity.


Confusing messages

Problems occur when a renegade copywriter is bored of being serious and tries to include humorous elements into what should be a refined, elegant tone. The message becomes confusing and leaves the consumer unclear about what kind of business they are dealing with.

Take this as an example:

XYZ provide a one-stop-shop solution for accountancy services, payroll and tax advice. We offer a bespoke service across all business sectors, with an unrivalled client focus. We’d love to have a cuppa and a natter about what you’re after. Don’t be scared, drop us an email.

Corporate and chatty don’t mix, but independently for appropriate businesses, they can have equally positive impact. The only time a company should use different tones of voice across their business is if they have strikingly different brands under one umbrella.


Things to remember about tone of voice:

• Use the appropriate tone of voice for your business
• Be consistent across all company activity
• Tone of voice is relevant to internal as well as external communications
• Your company personality is determined by your tone of voice
• Use your tone of voice to build trust
• Engage, empathise and inform – your tone of voice will help you create these essential elements of content
Contact me if you’d like me to write your content for you!

Wax lyrical about your business, just make sure you are creating a consistent impression about its character.