Cultivating Your Voice
Let’s face it, a Nike sweatband isn’t always so different from a Reebok sweatband, and a Ford isn’t always so different from a Chevy. But what is different, is the marketing team behind them and the stories they tell. It's precisely these narratives that appeal to our emotional side and eventually our wallets.
Alright, alright, we know that our voice is important. But exactly how important is it?
Wordpress reports that on their platform alone, 52.4 million new posts are created monthly. With dozens of other blogging platforms, social networks, and media vehicles—a unique voice has never been more relevant to a brand’s success.
When evaluating your brand’s unique voice, there are a couple of things you must ask yourself:
Who’s Your audience?
It’s much easier to convert consumers within your niche than converting and educating new ones. If you’re looking for fast returns, consider your audience carefully. Do your research, using tools like Google Analytics and questionnaires to find out who and where your customers are. Be sure to reward your customers for their time if you choose to use the latter method.
What value does Your content provide?
Notice how we used the word value instead of difference? That’s because too many companies think being different means being unique without evaluating whether or not that difference adds value to the consumer. Research your competitor’s and find out what you offer that they don’t. Use that information to focus in on customer reviews and surveys to see if that’s a valuable difference you need to exploit—this will be the central focus of your brand’s voice.
How should You convey that value?
How you convey your message can distinguish you just as much as the message itself. Sure you’re probably going to use many of the same platforms as your competitor’s, but you should also consider the avenues your competitor’s are not yet dominating. MacWorld for example, reports that there are only 250,000+ podcasts whereas according to Adweek there are 42 billion Facebook pages. As a business owner you need to evaluate the competition—less competitive platforms are not always better, but they have the potential to give you a solid edge.
It’s also important to consider content length and digestabilibty. Does your audience prefer long form? Short form? Videos? Text? Again, use analytics to evaluate these things to see what content your audience is consuming, and the length of time they’re consuming it. Adjust accordingly.
- With market saturation, finding a unique voice is more essential than ever.
- Consider your audience.
- Consider your service/product.
- Exploit the areas where you are strong and your competitors are weak. This will be the central focus of your brand voice.
- Tailor your content to your audience’s attention span, and mediums of choice.