Often, business owners don’t put enough thought and deliberation into the creation of the messaging of their brand. Tone, style, and messaging are important elements of the face a brand puts forward to consumers. Done correctly, brand messaging can go a long way towards establishing long-term customer relationships. Done wrong, and the risk of alienating consumers or creating a negative connotation is much higher.
But how does a brand create a strong brand messaging strategy? This, of course, is dependent on the target market of the brand, the industry it’s in, and the mission and overall goals of the business. The tone used to market a financial services agency, for example, will be much different than the one marketing protein shakes.
Identifying the Messaging Recipient
First things first, it’s important to have a strong idea of the target customer for a brand. This may vary, as many brands market it to multiple groups of people. So how does a brand come up with the best way to approach different types of people?
One simple way to start is to identify the ideal customer. Perhaps the ideal customer is a mid-50s businessman who travels often and has a corporate credit card. Or perhaps the ideal customer is a female entrepreneur who is launching her own startup. Maybe the brand is marketing mostly to teenagers or college students. All of these target demographics require a slightly different tone.
While many businesses will market to different age groups and types of people, speaking in a relatable way to the target demographic will accomplish a lot for a brand. Consider this: an investment bank won’t want to “water down” their tone too much for fear of alienating those who are familiar with the industry.
Adjusting Tone Across Platforms
As with most brands, marketing on different platforms is integral to success and also serves to diversify those reached. While the target demographic remains the central part of brand messaging, the tone can still be adjusted according to which platform is being used.
For example, users on Facebook tend to be slightly older and more likely to be ready to purchase. Instagram users skew younger, and Snapchat even younger. Twitter tends to have a mixture of older professionals and younger voices. Therefore, it’s important to have a strong understanding of the tone that messaging on each of these platforms would take on.
Promotion on Instagram might focus more on pleasant imagery and clever captioning, more than long copy and sales promotion. In contrast, a Facebook post may have deeper content, a clickable link, and a stronger call to action to purchase.
Simply cross-posting content to each platform won’t bring in the results. While the overall theme of content can remain the same, it’s important to still take the time to tailor the messaging for each platform to maximize the post’s potential impact.
A brand’s messaging strategy is important, and it’s a concept that some marketers would do well to dedicate more time to. Having a strong strategy that reaches out and grabs the consumer will lead to a longer lasting impact when it comes to sales and revenue brought in by the marketing team. The wrong tone can be more damaging to a brand than one may think, so make sure to integrate this into every marketing strategy.
5WPR CEO Ronn Torossian — founder of 5W Public Relations