by Mackenzie Scott of Soundstripe
Cultivating a strong brand identity is critical when pursuing year-over-year growth as a new business.
Krista Neher — bestselling author and CEO of Boot Camp Digital — offers this advice on effective branding: “Start by knowing what you want and who you are, build credibility around it and deliver it online in a compelling way.”
The founding team members of any new business venture identify their company’s mission and intended target audience well before launching the business.
As a new business owner or a core member of the team, you have a solid grip on your brand’s identity and purpose in the marketplace. The core values and goals that your team identifies early-on can inform how you present your business to prospective customers.
When you’re managing several channels of communication at once — i.e., the company website, social media, etc. — it’s important to do this with a strong brand voice.
Delivering your business’s value proposition in a compelling way is what ultimately converts prospects into new customers. However, it takes time and effort to develop a unique voice for your business.
In this article, we identify three key strategies for defining and refining your business’s voice across multiple channels.
Strategies To Define Your Brand’s Voice
1. Start Internal.
If your team is out of sync when communicating with prospects and current customers, this can lead to a lot of confusion and misinformation.
Defining your brand’s voice begins with the people working behind-the-scenes to design, produce, market, and sell the services. In order to see short and long-term growth, your entire team needs to understand and care about your organization’s core values.
Specifically, your team has to see and believe that they are contributing to the company’s growth.
According to Hubspot, 69% of employees say that their productivity would increase if they believed their contributions were better recognized.
Because your business’s employees construct and deliver your brand’s messaging, it’s important to focus your efforts internally first and make sure everyone is on the same page.
If employees feel undervalued, this feeling will likely shape the voice of your business. If employees feel informed and appreciated, the messaging will be more cohesive and molded by their passion for the company.
When it comes to communicating with internal and external stakeholders, transparency in messaging is critical — especially for building consumer trust in your new business.
2. Fine-Tune Your Audience Personas.
The primary audience personas that you target in the first year of business may not be the same two years down the line. This is because, like your business, personas naturally evolve over time.
To market effectively to a target audience, B2B and B2C businesses segment their entire consumer base with accuracy — not guesswork. And this requires data.
A study by Salesforce found that 76% of consumers expect businesses to understand who they are and what they need.
What better way to find out exactly who your audience is than to ask them directly.
Conducting voice-of-customer research (VoC) through surveys, focus groups, and other means signals to your audience that you care about the quality of their experience.
This also enables you to test the accuracy of your business’s audience persona deck and make adjustments if necessary. You can answer the very important question of How do consumers self-identify?
The VoC data that you gather informs your business’s voice because you better understand who you are targeting. From this data, you can identify your audience’s pain points, preferences, and hesitations.
By collecting your audience’s responses, you’re equipped with the data you need to refine your marketing strategy and implement company-wide changes.
3. Let VoC Research Inform Your Voice.
One of the signature benefits to VoC data collection is that the results quite literally speak for themselves.
As you examine the mass of qualitative and quantitative data, you begin to notice trends and similarities in your audience’s perception of the business.
Do the majority of participants believe that your services are fairly priced? Are there common pain points and hesitations? What categories do your audience personas fall into?
By giving participants the opportunity to respond with short answers, your consumers can voice their likes and dislikes instead of just checking a box.
After taking inventory of the data, your marketing team can then take action to integrate participants’ responses into the website, email, and social media copy.
One case study found that signups for Learn Visual Studio’s courses increased by 9.2% after marketers changed the copy on the main web page to reflect the results from VoC research.
Aligning your business’s voice with the audience’s voice ensures that your messaging is relevant to consumers. By taking your audience’s perspective into account — and actually implementing changes — you can drive more conversions and increase engagement.
Manage Multiple Channels of Communication With A Unified Voice
PR Newswire reported that when customers engage with a business, they can typically access an average of nine channels of communication.
A well-managed, cohesive brand voice is necessary for any business, but especially one that is newly established. The way that your team communicates internally and with other stakeholders influences brand perception.
To manage multiple channels of communication effectively, it’s important to keep your audience in mind and involve them in the process however you can.
Mackenzie Scott is a copywriter with Soundstripe, a royalty-free music and stock media company. From uncopyrighted music to stock video, Soundstripe provides creators with the resources they need for video and podcast production.