SHEcorporated One Step Empire

Is your brand Jennifer Aniston or Angelina Jolie?

January 11, 2023 Kristy Carruthers Season 3 Episode 33
SHEcorporated One Step Empire
Is your brand Jennifer Aniston or Angelina Jolie?
Show Notes Transcript

Have you ever thought about what your brand would be like if it was a person?

Would it be cool and down to earth like Jennifer Aniston,  bubbly and friendly like Drew Barrymore?  Maybe it's tough and polished like Angelina Jolie, or perhaps it's hard working, stylish or earthy?

That brand personality is part of your brand voice, and it’s a fun and easy way to start digging into how your brand should communicate to your audience.

But beyond that starting point, there are lots of points to consider to find your authentic brand voice, and use it to build you brand effectively.

Our favorite work wives, Hannah and Jessica are here today to help us develop our own brand voice so we can use it to create a loyal base of customers and fans.

Figuring this part out as early as possible is key, as it will guide so many of your decisions in marketing and beyond, as your business grows.  So take a few minutes today and find your brand voice with us!

Lets get into it!

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[00:00:00] Have you ever thought about what your brand would be like if it was a person, would it be cool and down to earth, like Jennifer Aniston or. Maybe bubbly and friendly and a little bit granola like drew Barrymore, maybe it's hardworking and tough or stylish and poised that brand personality is part of your brand voice.

And it's a fun and easy way to start digging into how your brand should communicate to your audience. But beyond that starting point, there are lots of points to consider to find your authentic brand voice and use it to build your brand effectively. Our favorite work wives, Hannah and Jessica are here today to help us develop our own brand voice so we can use it to create a loyal base of customers and fans figuring this part out as early as possible is key because it will guide so many of your decisions in marketing and beyond as your business grows.

So take a few minutes today and find your brand voice with us. Let's get into it.

Hannah and Jessica are here today [00:01:00] as our favorite work wife team. They were coworkers, turned work wives, and now turned co CEOs. They are the founders of work, wife writers, a copywriting company that helps entrepreneurs use their authentic voice and build their brand, and I cannot wait to dive into this topic.

Thank you ladies so much for being here with us today. Thank you for having us and you nailed our name. It was great. One take wonder. Are you all right? Well, we won't talk about the takes beforehand. Okay. make me look good. So tell us a bit more about how you got connected. I gave a, a really brief intro there, but you've got a great story and you you've done a lot of this journey together and it kind of sounds like it was meant to be so can you give us the backstory.

Yeah. So we actually met at a different copywriting company before the one that we founded and that copywriting company encouraged us in that we saw it and thought we could probably do this better. And so after about a year, we decided. [00:02:00] Yeah, we're, we're gonna do this better. And so we started our own, copywriting company and where work wife comes in is Jess and I had gotten along very well in the previous company, , to the point that I said in a non harassing.

Slash flirtatious way, would you marry me? , and thankfully she said, yes. And so, we ended up becoming work wives and I kind of joked, listen, if we ever create a company, we have to have work wives in the title. And then I kind of thought of it a little bit. And I thought, oh, work life writers, the alliteration it's right there.

You know? , and so we tried to go with that and, , we combined our experience. We ended up having around the same amount of experience in our, , specific fields. , I had. At the time when we founded our company about eight or nine years in administration, , business administration and Jess had had eight or nine years.

Copywriting. And I should mention that's copywriting, w R , not R I G H T , it's with the pencil, not with the, the C with the circle around it. A lot of people get that very [00:03:00] confused. , copywriting is just copy. , I shouldn't say that. What is copy? Maybe people dunno. Copywriting is the written part of any sort of marketing.

So any webpage you look at, , any ad that you see or read, , Anything, basically that you read in general is technically considered copy. So, , that's what we do. We're kind of everywhere all at once. Thank you for verifying that too. because it does get confusing. If you're not familiar with the term copy, we're talking about an entirely different thing, so that's perfect.

Thank you. Yeah, absolutely. I've seen lawyers write copywriting, but with the w and I just think, Ugh, this is just another explanation I'm gonna have to give later today, you know, They need your help. they do. That's why, but that's why we're here. That's why people are hiring us. We, we get the, , distinction.

That's great. That's a great story. What a great way to start a business too. So one of the things that you guys, are really, really tuned into is using an authentic. Brand voice. And I love this [00:04:00] because it's, it's something that's so often missed completely when we start our business. And it has a huge impact.

We miss it because it's not something on a checklist somewhere necessarily. And it's not something that you might notice right away that's missing, but over the long term and over all of your marketing, you would certainly, you would certainly miss it. So I'm really glad that we, that we could talk about this.

So let's start with, I guess, what is a brand voice? Yeah. So a brand voice is basically just the personality of your brand as conveyed through what you're saying and how you're saying it. , there's a lot of different components, but basically what we really wanna emphasize as a company and like that we're encouraging businesses to tap into is that brand voice, isn't something you pepper in.

Like later when you get the chance, it should really be a foundational part of your brand and of your market. Right. Yeah. And it really affects everything that you do. It's a, it's a touchstone that you get to come back to isn't it. And, and really everything you do, you could say now, you know, [00:05:00] how is this affected?

 So why is the brand voice important for successful marketing then? Yeah. So it's really important for a few reasons. The first is obviously that it's going to keep you distinct from other brands and other companies that are doing maybe the same kind of products or services that you're doing.

You want a way to be yourself, your own brand. That's different from other similar brands. The second reason is that it's gonna keep you recognizable across your different platforms. So when you're talking on your website, when you're posting a blog or sending an email or posting on social media, you want all of those things to sound.

They come from the same company. so brand voice is the sort of the, the thread that ties all of those together. And then that consistency is really important because that translates into how your customers and your clients and your audience are going to read into your brand because when they feel like your messaging is consistent and they know what to expect from you, it really feeds into brand loyalty.

It feeds into customer attention. It makes it [00:06:00] easier to engage with all of these people that you're trying to connect with, when they can see something and read it and recognize. Oh, that's this brand. I know what that is. I know what they're like. And hopefully, you know, ideally they like that personality that you've created.

 If I could have one more thing, internally, it also helps as well on kind of the business side of things. If you're bringing in a new employee, Or maybe you have to take over your marketing for any reason whatsoever.

If you have a brand voice established, the consistency will remain, you're not left kind of guessing how do I write this? You know, how do I convey what I want to convey, but still remain quote unquote, on brand having that brand voice and a, and a brand guide as well to go along with it will help internally as well as externally.

Yeah. And that consistency piece too. If you've attracted your, ideal clients with a certain voice that you're using and they've connected with that and they've come to you and then you switch it up [00:07:00] and suddenly do something that's completely out of character for your brand. And I think we've all kind of had that happen at some point, right.

You're you're buying from someone and then something comes out and you're like, that just doesn't feel right. That doesn't sound right from them. That doesn't make sense. It's very confusing and you can lose a lot of people that way. The consistency piece is, is so huge.

Exactly. And this is kind of like, you can think of it if it's helpful, the same way you approach people. if you like get to know a person, you have a good rapport with them. And then all of a sudden, the next day, it seems like they're a totally different person. You're gonna be like, Hey, what's happening?

Like what's going on? I don't know you anymore. So if you kind of want the same feel for your brand, you want it to be recognizable and uniquely. Excellent. So how do we do that? yeah, that's the next thing. That is the right. That's the big question. Right? , so brand voice, I feel like can come off as a sort of nebulous concept because you're like, sure.

A personality, like a sound, a tone, like, what does that mean? How do I break that down as a person, trying to [00:08:00] create something for my brand. ,and so I think. There are two sides to the components of brand voice. The first is the writing side. And so this is gonna be specific things like the tone of voice that you're writing in the word choice that you're using your grammar, all of these kind of technical writing aspects that are coming into play and are gonna tie together to create the writing side.

And then the other important side is the messaging side. And so that's gonna be stuff like having a really solid mission, vision and core values for your. , and so when you have all of these things combined together into a very specific, , intentional vision, that's sort of where brand voice comes from.

So I can also talk a little bit about how to get into like each of those sub components, if that would be helpful. Yeah. That would be very helpful. Thank you. Yeah. , so I think tone is a really good place to start, because tone is sort of what you think of when you hear brand voice. So to start out.

And get into a tone of [00:09:00] voice that you feel is good for your brand. I like to start thinking of that as sort of scales of like opposites. So do you want formal or informal and where on that scale, do you want the tone for your brand to fall or like funny versus like formal and like serious? Where on that scale, do you want your, your tone to.

And then the other half of tone, and this is the sort of part that I think isn't considered as much is the sort of intention and reception of your content. So when you write something, you should be thinking, how do I want the reader to feel when they read this? Like when somebody reads the content for my brand, do I want them to feel challenge?

Do I want them to feel motivated, to act? Do I want them to feel informed? Like these are all core components that are really gonna solidify what your brand means and what you're doing. With your content. And then the second part of that would be what are you encouraging the reader to do after they read?

So do you want them to go learn more about a topic? Do you want them to reflect on something? Do you want them to, [00:10:00] you know, write and express themselves? Probably at some point you want them to make a purchase., but that's sort of a, like a subset, just sort of thinking about the path that you're creating and how you're guiding them down that path, I think is really important for the tone aspect.

And then when we get into the specifics of like the words that you're choosing and how you're actually writing, I think the technical aspect, is also very important and is something that people are sort of taking for granted, especially if you are a solo entrepreneur or someone who is doing all of your own content, you're like, well, I write it.

The way I write it. Right. You know, it just comes out how it comes out. , but it's really important to sit down and think about the kinds of words that you're using, like grammar you're using and figuring out how these things are really coming into play for your brand specifically. So with something like the word choice that you're using, does your brand have any specific terms or phrases that you use that no one else uses?

Are there things specific to [00:11:00] your industry that are really important for your brand? Do you use metaphors and analogies? Do you sort of speak in, , flowery, figurative language? Is that something you like or don't like, , do you have any words or phrases that you don't say that's actually really important?

And I think a helpful way for a lot of people to come at brand voice is sometimes to go from the opposite and say, well, what do I not wanna be? , and sometimes process of elimination, you can work backwards and figure it out from there. And these are not things that we're gonna just sit down and think about every time we start to write something, this is something we're gonna sit down at the beginning or now, if now is not the beginning.

And we're gonna say, okay, this is, this is what I sound like in everything I do. We don't figure this out as we go. This is, this is planned. Yes, exactly. And so that's the big thing is that you want this all to be planned beforehand and you want it written down somewhere. I cannot stress enough how much I want.

If there's one thing to take away from today, brand voice, [00:12:00] write down what you want your brand voice to be, what you want it to sound like, because when it's all in your head, it can't be pinned. You can't, as Hannah was saying, pass off your content to someone else confidently because it's all in your head.

They don't know what it's supposed to sound like. ,you can't shift things as well, because if you do decide, you need to change your brand voice for whatever reason, if your company takes a new direction, you don't have. That foundation to look at and say, these are the things I'm gonna change. You're just kind of winging it.

 Which is again, not the great way to be consistent and to engage with your audience. Like we were talking about. And it's a great thing to add to your brand kit with your fonts and your colors and stuff. Right? I mean, that's, it's all, absolutely. It's all part of the same thing and, and you're right, because we think, okay, we've nailed it.

And then we forget all of the, all of the things, even if we didn't hand it off to anyone else, just for myself to go back to, you know, what did I decide on that? What was that thing? How did it, you forget exactly. We need to have it somewhere to refer to. Yeah. I think [00:13:00] also another thing to determine as well, especially when.

As you said, either sitting down now or hopefully first sitting down, ,because you really wanna get this as soon as possible is to determine whether your brand voice is incorporating or is your actual voice as well. ,because some brands do have a completely different brand voice compared to those who are working in that brand.

, if you're thinking kind of larger corporations or anything like that, for the best example I can give is I'm a new England. If anybody has been to new England, they know exactly what that means. And sometimes that doesn't translate well to the business world. and so I can't use my voice. I have to use whatever brand I'm working with, voice the company's voice, if you will.

Determining what voice you're going to use, is it yours or if it's, or is it a brand new one or is it something in between is also something to figure out pretty early on as. So you, you've got an interesting topic. I I'd love to hear more about, we talked about this briefly, previously [00:14:00] is using your brand voice and your overall marketing to be more inclusive and accessible. Let's talk about that. Absolutely. Yeah. So those are two things that we've really tried to build into our business as we've been sort of creating this and going through the process and accessibility and inclusivity are really things that are built into your values as a company and your brand voice as a company, which is why it's really important to establish those things early on.

 So. One of the reasons that it's so important to tie those things up together is that a lot of the problems that we see brands running into now are feeling like they're acting in a way that is performative, right? So we are currently recording during, LGBTQ pride month. And so like you see, once it hits June, everybody's like, Turning their logo to a rainbow.

And you're like, okay, that's, that's nice, you know, support, but what, what does that really mean? Like, are you just doing that because everybody else is doing that. Do you have a structure [00:15:00] in place that is already supporting this cause, , and this is true of any cause that your brand is trying to support.

 We really wanna encourage the companies that we work with to. Incorporate these elements into everything from the start. That way things don't feel performative, they feel natural and a real part of your brand. And so one of the ways that you can do that specifically through your brand voice and your copy is to really think about the words that you're using.

And making sure those are sort of accessible and inclusive. And then for copy specifically, a lot of accessibility is tied up in readability. Making sure that when you write something, it can be read by as many people as possible. , there are a few different ways to do that. , one of the big ones is to avoid jargon and sort of terms and specific language or.

Metaphors and like analogies that we were just talking about being potentially part of your brand. Making sure those things are [00:16:00] not like so niche that they are turning off people and making people confused and making people feel like they don't understand you. Mm-hmm another accessibility thing is to just be conscious of your tech spacing and to make sure that you're breaking up like shorter and longer, , Blocks of text with headers and subheaders, and then another really practical tip that I've happened upon recently.

And now I've been telling everyone that they should start doing this, is that if you are using bullet points and the,, items in the bullet points are sentences, you should end those sentences with a period like you would in, , any other. Context, because it's really helpful for, , screen readers. So people who are visually impaired or who are otherwise using a device to read bullet pointed lists, it helps the, the computer reader understand and interpret those bullets easier.

And then it's also really good for people with ADHD or people with dyslexia. Seeing the period helps them organize a sentence in their mind and just makes everything a lot more [00:17:00] readable. And so it's really just little things like that. It's those are none of those things are tweaks that are gonna be difficult for you to employ, but really show that you are being conscious of the choices that you're making.

And you're acting in a way that is making your content accessible to as many people as. thinking about your language right from the beginning, because you need to be careful, you knew and there's, there's a lot of language that's changed over the last, you know, five, 10 years, 15 years.

And you may not. Even be aware of some of the, the words and the phrases that you're using. And you may mean no harm, mean no offense with them, but you're not aware of how that's being received by other people. So, I think to really sit down and look at your language from the beginning and, and build that in is, is such a great idea.

Absolutely. And as you're saying, this is something that changes a lot. And so it's good to sort of schedule time to reevaluate, the language that you're using and the, all these kind of things, just to see Hey, has anything changed? Is there something that I need [00:18:00] to be aware of? Do I need to make any shift adjustments as I'm going?

And that's another way to just make sure that your brand is staying conscious is staying relevant and is coming across as accessible, inclusive and not perform. Now, any other tips, that we didn't cover here as far as, building that brand voice, implementing it that we should, we should keep in mind.

Yeah. , I think definitely you're gonna want to, Think about who on your team needs to be part of this conversation. If you're a solo printer, if you own your own business of you can do it by yourself. But if you do have other employees, other people who are important in your company, you'll all wanna kind of sit down and have this conversation together.

 Do a big brainstorming session. And I think I sort of briefly touched on this before, but again, I think one of the most, Effective ways to go about figuring out what your brand voice should be. If you don't know if you're like, I have no idea. I don't know where to start with. This is to work backwards and think, what do [00:19:00] I, what do I not want to sound like?

 I know that was especially helpful for me. In my very first communications job, I worked for an animal welfare organization and when I started there and I started taking over their content, what they told me was. We want to not sound like the a S P C a, that was the, that was the instruction they gave me.

And so that sort of brings to mind, you know, the sad Sarah McLaughlin commercials and sort of like feelings of guilt and like, you know, making you feel a little bit sad and kind of down and like it's a little pessimistic. And so they were like, that's exactly what we don't wanna sound like. Work backwards from there.

And so if you can find something like that for your business, I think that's really helpful. That's a great tip. And you could start, so you could start with your competitors, whoever they happen to be right. See who you're, what do you need to stand out from? And let's start, you know, let's start there and, and look at your, your market as well.

Look at your target market and, and what they respond to and, and how you want to come across to them. [00:20:00] Absolutely. Yeah. And so definitely you can start with competitors and then just any brands that you admire, like if you think there is a brand that has a really strong voice that you like, whether or not they're in your industry look at the content that they're making, look at how they're crafting that voice, that personality and see what you can pick from there and turn into your own thing.

Yeah. Dissect it a little bit. Very nice. So you actually have a whole course that you do on this is that. We do. Yeah. , we teach a course called copy rise and one of the weeks of copy rise is dedicated to brand voice. , and so that is all about taking these, like this concept. That's kind of hard to break down and saying here from a technical side, from a writing perspective, here is how you're gonna do that.

 We break down different steps in ways that you can approach figuring out a brand voice. Our courses geared towards copywriters specifically so that they. Tap into brand voice for different clients that they're working with. But I think it's super useful [00:21:00] for business owners and for people who are trying to create their own content, especially if you don't have any experience in this kind of thing, because it is a little overwhelming to figure out where to start.

So we do have copy rise and do a, a brand voice week for that. I believe we'll, we'll link out to that course in the description. And I think Hannah said, we're gonna do a, a discount for your listen. Nice. Excellent. Thank you for that. and you also do one on one clients as well, is that correct?

If, if people wanna reach out and, and connect yeah. If you're like, wow, I love this idea of brand voice. , but I still don't know where to start and, or I don't have time and don't really know what I'm doing enough to feel confident about it.

We make brand voice guides, so you can get in touch with us and we will sort all that out for you and give you that. Foundation that you need to really get your marketing started. So can you give us your, , the, your main website that people can find, give it to us verbally.

We're gonna link it in the show notes as well, but just in case somebody's listening and just wants to hear it right now. What, what is it? Yes. Perfect. You can find us at work, wife, [00:22:00] and that there's a hyphen between work. So it's work. Hyphen wife, Beautiful. See how I made you say that?

I know it's a little bit of a tongue twister. Okay, perfect. And we are gonna link it in the show notes. And if you happen to be listening on a platform where you can't see those, you can always, always, always get the It's the podcast website, just like the name of the podcast. One step

We've got all the links and all the goodies and the discount code as well will be there. And the link to the website. So you can, you can get in touch with Hannah and Jessica that way too. So I just wanted to say thank you ladies. Thanks so much for, for being with us today. I really appreciate you coming on with us.

That was a lot of fun. Yeah. Thanks for having us. Yeah. Thanks for