Marketing Basics Series
No Brand Voice?
You know it when you see it. Mismatched marketing materials. Either from a vendor trying to get you as a customer, or (worse!) your own company. Nothing matches — each department does their own thing with the logo, the colors, even the call-to-action, and none of the sales or marketing materials match each other or even look like they are from the same entity.
If a company cannot be consistent with its own materials (printed pieces, website, social media), how will it land new clients? Perception and professionalism aside, potential clients won’t be able to gain an understanding of that company’s services or unique benefits.
If this is happening in your company, then you want to make your materials — your Brand Voice — more cohesive, more coherent. It will build your business.
It may seem daunting to fix, too, or it may seem that you must hire an agency to come in and “fix things”. But you don’t have to bring in the big guns (yet). Here’s what you can do, internally, to fix the situation.
Perform a Materials Audit.
Take a week or two to get samples of anything and everything that is in use. Include the website, your company email signatures, social media cover images, sales One Sheets, ads, proposals, PowerPoints, etc. If you have the space and a conference table, put everything out on it and assess the whole lot. If nothing matches, you’ve got a branding problem. If a few things match, you still have a branding problem. If several things match but not all things, you still have a branding problem. Your company must have a single visual “voice”. To ensure that yours is memorable, recognizable, and trustworthy (since consistency breeds trust, and inconsistency conveys incompetence). That may sound harsh but it’s the truth. There is so much visual noise out there nowadays that you need to clarify your Brand Voice or it won’t be heard.
While looking at the vast array of materials mix that you have spread out on the table in front of you, pick a design/messaging approach that resonates with you (and better — that you know has resonated with your market) and make that your Target Visual. Task your team with matching that look/style if your bench is deep enough. If your internal resources are lacking, bring in an agency to create templates to help you bring all your materials into visual alignment and give your company Brand Voice that professional look. This will empower your team, build confidence in your ambassadors, and ultimately build your business. It’s that simple.
But first, you must find your voice.
(Below) Pro-bono client NAWBO-LA sports a consistent Brand Voice across all channels thanks to LDM