Remember how you could tell your parents’ voices apart from thousands of others when you were a child? And how it was immediately clear from their tone whether everything was alright or whether there was about to be trouble? It’s no different in brand communication. The brand voice is a brand’s identity; its tone of voice is what makes it resonate with the audience and determines how people perceive the brand – on advertising banners and social media channels or at events. It’s also the decisive factor in whether they feel inspired, educated or touched.
If it resonates with the audience, is unique and gets to the point, a brand voice will have a subconscious, long-term effect. If it’s consistently implemented in addition to this? Bingo: a lasting impression is made, and people will recognize the brand’s tone when they encounter it again.
The following brands have succeeded in this. But what is it that makes their voice unique? Let’s take a closer look at a few examples.
Tone: assertive, confident, minimalist
When it comes to well-known brand voices, there’s no ignoring the tech giant. As the cover image demonstrates, Apple’s tone is clear, confident and easily distinguishable, even without a brand name. Its strong standing and a hint of smugness make all the difference.
Tone: playful, amiable, approachable
The juice producer is also known around the world for its tone of voice and innovative campaigns. It uses fresh, playful communication to resonate with its younger, urban audience as they go about their daily lives.
Tiffany & Co.
Tone: elegant, traditional
The language of the world-famous jeweler has the same characteristics as its jewelry pieces: classy and upscale. From its website and product catalogs to its social media, Tiffany’s opts for an elevated and timeless tone.
Tone: dominant, rebellious
Some brands aim to please with a cheerful, playful tone. The motorcycle manufacturer is definitely not one of them. Its voice is rugged, dominant and rebellious, just like the brand itself. It challenges the audience to prove that they are rebellious and independent, and know how to handle a Harley.
Tone: personal, emotive
The world’s largest airline by revenue, Delta is all about appealing to emotions. It adds a personal touch to its communications across all its campaign texts and commercials. Its language allows it to achieve two important goals: trust and affinity with passengers.
Images: delta.com, video: Youtube
So, what can we learn from the big names?
The spectrum of language styles is broad, encompassing everything from casual to personal and traditional to dominant. The art lies in finding the right vibe for the brand. Establishing a successful tone of voice depends on a rock-solid brand concept and an analysis of the corresponding target group. What does a brand stand for? Who does it appeal to, and what feelings does it want to evoke in its audience? If the tone takes all this into account, it will be remembered – whether by the urban bon vivant, the jet-setter or the motorcycle fanatic.
Want to find out which language style suits your brand? We’ve prepared a short guide here to help you decide.
Cover image via Apple.com