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Why consistent tone of voice is as important as quality content

We talk about “quality content” helping brands get their messages out, helping them rank better in organic searches and giving them brand authority.  And while most of the focus for writing those content pieces is on the subject under discussion, what we must not forget is how we are talking.

Tone of voice is a crucial part of the make-up of any brand and its content. Indeed, quite often it will be a distinguishing feature.  Take the relaxed and friendly style of the words written on a bottle of Innocent smoothie for example. They have been writing like this for many years and it’s an integral part of their brand personality.  The company’s senior management team gives a friendly and relaxed appearance and their blogs mirror their joint vision and passion. However, if Innocent had a very serious website, lots of different fonts or put out an advert that offended lots of people, we would begin to question that what they are saying is truly their vision.

Finding the right tone

What brands can’t rely on is just producing quality content in the right tone. If any other touch points of a brand are not aligned, then doubt begins to creep in, trust begins to wain and loyalty naturally drops away.  Brands therefore need to have guardians looking over the wider picture for them, be that a marketing agency or people internally in the business; the vision needs to be consistent.

If you received a beautifully laid out email from a luxury retailer inviting you to a new store opening, which had great photography, was consistent with what you have seen before and had a piece of content that talked about their journey to launching, you may well confirm your attendance and feel excited about being associated with the brand.  However, if on arrival you were welcomed by a staff member who seemed uninterested and you were directed to a wonky pop-up table with some stale cheese sandwiches and a plastic cup to help yourself to lemonade, the vision is quickly shattered.

So good quality content doesn’t answer all your prayers as a brand, but what it can do is help build trust, help build authority, offer more than just a product or service, and provide something genuinely useful or entertaining to your customers.

Good engaging content can take your customers on a journey that doesn’t end up directly at a till, but if you have aligned everything else, that content may be key to ensuring when that client does make a decision to buy, you have offered them knowledge, insight, perhaps excitement, but always a consistent tone of voice and one that your customer buys into.