Gone are the days of the town crier shouting the news to everyone in the same way. Today savvy marketers need to be able to adapt their message to each audience and medium for maximum results.
Few brands have taken the time to formalize the voice of their brand. While it is important to develop a distinctive style of communication for your brand, perhaps more important for most marketers is adapting their message to each audience and medium.
Copy & Paste – If it worked in a news release, surely it’ll work for an ad! Too often marketers looking to save time and money grab copy prepared for one purpose and use it elsewhere with varying levels of success. The direct AP style approach of a news release may convey the highlights of a new product, but it’s far from the persuasive and emotional copy needed to inspire consumers to buy. A description in a catalog may tell your distributor what the product includes, but it probably won’t bring a customer into the showroom. Approved copy from any communication channel is a good starting point, but it needs to be adapted to the new audience and medium for optimal results.
Marketing vs. Social Voice – One of the most difficult transitions for many brands entering social media is how to adapt their voice to be more social while remaining true to the brand. Just like you are probably different in the office than you are at home with friends or family, your brand’s voice needs to change as well. Social media isn’t a place for marketing language pulled from your brochure or press release. It’s a place to start a conversation and your words should reflect that. Most likely your brochure would never say, “Check out this cool new widget!” but asking followers what they think of your cool new widget could be a great conversation starter allowing your fans to feel like they are ‘in the know’ about your brand. Of course this only goes so far. You most likely wouldn’t want your doctor to talk about a ‘cool new’ surgery he’s trying out. That’s the beauty of social media; it’s about adapting your brand voice, not completely changing it.
Effective copywriting begins with eliminating common problems and then adapting your message to the medium. Check back for the last post in this copywriting blog series where we discuss the polish of professional copywriting and copyediting services.