Among the many factors to consider when you build your brand, it’s easy for the non-visual elements such as language, consistent messaging, strong writing and grammar to be overlooked. How do yours stack up?
A successful brand is much more than its logo, colour scheme, typography and other visual components. You communicate your brand every time you touch a client:
- the way you answer the phone;
- your customer service;
- the quality of your letters and promotions;
- your web and newsletter content.
A strong brand nurtures and sustains your relationships with your clients. It builds awareness of your products and services, and reflects who you are as an individual and – more importantly – as a business.
And by raising awareness, a good brand increases your client-base, and ultimately your profits.
Strengthening your brand doesn’t have to mean a complete redesign of your corporate identity. The visual design aspect is certainly important, but written communication is also important to build your brand, so take the time to ensure you have the right words and strong writing to complement those amazing designs.
If it’s time to update your written material, here are three tips to help you build your brand by using strong writing:
1. Consider your audience
Who are you targeting? Who are your ideal clients? Is your product technical? Will your readers understand your terminology?
Ask yourself whether your readers expect a formal, informal or persuasive edge to your material. Does your current written material respect their knowledge, or is your writing style a little patronising? Use language and tone to suit your target audience.
Want more articles like this? Check out the business branding section.
2. Be consistent
Your clients should be exposed to consistent messages and get the same feeling of confidence through every channel of communication. The same messages should come through each medium, whether it is a fax, letter, website or photograph!
If you have a mission statement or key messages, incorporate them into your material each time you write. You don’t need to use exactly the same words, but you need to keep the messages you convey about your brand consistent.
3. Even small errors reflect poorly on your brand
Like it or not, potential clients will judge you on your writing. When you’ve worked hard to develop your business, it’s a crying shame to let careless errors undermine your message and your credibility.
Focus on the detail and you’ll make a good impression. Ask yourself whether your writing makes sense. Have you used the right wording? And, importantly, is it grammatically correct?
When you’re happy with your content, make sure you proofread your work for surface errors such as spelling, grammar and punctuation. You might also discover a word or phrase that you’ve overused. You need to take a systematic approach to proofreading, and it could take several read-throughs before you’re satisfied that everything is 100% correct, but it’s worth it!
If writing, spelling and grammar are not strong points for you, check out some of Flying Solo’s tips for good business writing, or enlist an expert to help you.
How has written communication affected your own brand, or how you feel about someone else’s? Please share your comments below.