After studying a degree in Marketing, one thing that is constantly mentioned when looking at a brand is consistency. There is a real emphasis on ensuring that all the content produced by the company, their logo, product / service, social media posts and name, relate to one another. A brand’s tone of voice is no exception to this rule. Marks & Spencer’s is a great example of this with regards to their food advertising campaigns. For a long time, it has been incredibly easy to identify when you are watching an M&S food advert, just from the tone of voice. The company has opted to use a slow paced, rich tone, emphasising the luxury of their food range, creating the impression that it is much more than just a meal on a plate.
3 aspects that determine the tone of voice for your brand videos are: Audience, Purpose and Message.
Who are your videos targeted towards? Haribo have hit the nail on the head when it comes to fitting their target market. Haribo adverts have typically shown a group of adults with a bag of Haribo’s, but when they talk they have the voice of a young child. What the adults in the advert are saying normally fits with what younger children might say when they are eating Haribo’s, such as their favourite sweet. The consumer of Haribo’s is traditionally the younger generation, but most young children are not the ones going to the supermarket to buy them, it tends to be their parents. Having an advert with adults with funny voices creates a comedic element and appeals to those that are buying the product. Similarly, Haribo as a company is all about having fun. If their video had someone with an incredibly monotone voice, it would not fit with their audience or brand.
What is the reason you are making this video? There are many reasons why brands create video content. Whether that is to inform, entertain or introduce something new. The differences in the purpose of the video have a direct impact on the tone of voice. As you would expect, the tone of voice would be very different if a company launched a new product, compared to building brand trust. Launching a product needs to be exciting, to convince people to buy or invest in the product, which is generally reflected in the tone of voice. You want the viewer to really have that wow factor, to push them through the conversion funnel. Building brand trust on the other hand can take many different approaches. Further considerations must be made depending on the sector your brand operates in, the target market, and what each brand’s unique selling point is. Therefore, two very similar companies may have very different approaches to building brand trust.
What do you want the audience to think about after seeing it? This very much links to the previous section, where the message must work in conjunction with the purpose. If the purpose of the video is to unveil a new state-of-the-art Bluetooth speaker, the message must scream opulence, luxury and something that consumers aspire to have. With a state-of-the-art Bluetooth speaker, less would be more. Keeping words to a minimum and showcasing what the product is about is much more important than listing all the features and overwhelming viewers with text.