If you’ve turned on the TV or logged on to social media in the last few weeks or so, you know what everyone’s been talking about. Chandrayaan 2 — India’s second lunar exploration mission was developed and launched by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on 22 July.
Why am I talking about this in a piece on brand voice?
Well, several brands congratulated ISRO for its achievement. One way to do this was to keep it simple — Congratulations to ISRO on the success of Chandrayaan 2. Nike, however, took a more creative route, drawing on their own tagline ‘Just do it’. The popular brand posted a creative of a rocket leaving a Nike logo-shaped trail in fiery fumes, along with the line ‘They did it again.’ And that right there is brand voice in four simple words.
While the uniformity of messaging tone and style is essential, retaining target audience is always priority. Nike’s message to ISRO maintains the tonality and motivational theme of its basic messaging and ties back to its tagline. So, despite the message not being brand-related, the target audience will have no trouble recognising the Nike identity. In short, Nike has mastered the four aspects of brand voice.
Here’s a look at what these aspects are:
The goal of marketing is to draw a particular group of customers to the brand. For example, Mailchimp’s audience is made up of small- and large-scale businesses looking for a direct, uncomplicated email channel. To this end, their communication is a first-person perspective — exactly like a direct, uncomplicated one-on-one thread. This is instantly appealing to the target audience as the tonality is characteristic of what they want from the platform itself — It’s that easy!
Zomato’s brand guidelines position them as a young, bold company ‘with a dash of madness’. With these keywords, the brand’s personality is shaped. Their messaging adopts the same qualities to connect communication with their overall personality. Let me take an example — in a quirky creative for water conservation, Zomato went with minimalistic white-on-red text which reads ‘Save water otherwise chai kaise banaoge?’ — a line that is relatable to any young professional who takes chai breaks, and at the same time, is successfully putting the cause out there. To put it simply, every company has certain traits and values attached to their identity. This unconventional messaging from the brand establishes these distinctive aspects with the customer base.
We live in a competitive world, which means there are thousands of brands out there vying for the same customer base. Individuality and a unique approach are the qualifiers that help a brand stand out from the crowd. Identifying the unique selling points of the brand and building communication around these can help with the creation of out-of-the-box messaging. For instance, the NFBC industry in India is booming, and they have a two-pronged problem to solve when it comes to tone. One, they must sound different from traditional banks, and two, they must sound different from each other. So, when one such company came to us to develop their tonality, we kept this in mind. The result? A fresh, young, vibrant tone that reflects their uniquely simple, new-age, relatable persona.
Once a brand is launched in the market, recognition is everything. When a brand’s communication is consistent, the target audience is more likely to start recognising it and will identify the messaging associated with it. Uniformity of style and tone builds brand recall within the customer base, which is crucial to the development of a brand. While some level of customisation may be required across geographies, the essence must remain constant.
So, if you haven’t thought of the voice your brand stands for, take a step back, and keep these pointers in mind. You’re sure to reap the rewards soon enough!