How to Sound Authentic in a Sea of White-washed Brand Content
The process of creating authentic copy for a brand can be daunting. And for the owner of the company, it can be scary to leave the job of writing content to young creatives. This is why experts who have the skillset and process to pull out the most valuable, meaningful content about your brand is so important. We are sharing some of our tips on how a strong voice can build brand awareness.
What to Avoid with Copywriting
The worst-case scenario for your brand is for someone to read your history, learn your values, see an advertisement for your establishment and feel disconnected from what you stand for. If you worked hard enough to get the target audience interested, the key thing copy should do is grab their attention.
Too often there are marketers out there that dilute brands with meaningless copy.
They say meaningless things like “best customer service” or “quality experience”. Worse off are the greenwashers who take something a company has worked really hard at like plant-based menu items and reduce their meaning.
Here are some ways to sound more authentic to the brand and stand out in a sea of meaningless content online
Developing Useful Copy - Key Messages, Soundbites and Narrative
When working on a brand identity project, brand campaign, or rebrand, start by developing messages that illustrate your understanding of what your audience needs. This of course requires you to know your target audience, which you can find tips for here.
That not only illustrates what you do, but engages your audience on a level deeper than supply and demand. Your message should speak to consumers in a way that makes them want to contribute to your continued success, not simply buy your brand.
- We start by entering a specific mindset and focus on this brand by putting my shoes in the interviewer’s seat. Pretending I’m Oprah and developing key questions for the founders of the brand. This helps me get the best brain dump going for who they are, their background, the master story, their values, and how they do business. Don’t assume this already exists in its best form online.
- Next, we apply our copywriting process in a manner that everyone can participate in and understand. We create shared documents that look like this:
- Start with a Brain Dump – a long-form background of the company, your values, and the focus of this project. You’ll be surprised by the creative material that will become useful later!
- Pull out the Soundbites – what do we want to hear internal culture, press and other key audience members say about our brand? We like to pretend we overheard key customers in the establishment and reviews online, what do you want these to say? You’ll be astonished at how a good strategy helps this become very easy.
- Create Key messages – These are the taglines and key headlines that could be useful for the website or advertising materials? Read through your material so far and pull these out in bold. You’ll need them later for things like Facebook ad copy and blogs.
After the hard work is done, now research begins. What is the competition saying about similar products, services or approaches? How can our tone and voice differ from them? Can we tweak our copy so that it stands out more or differentiates in an authentic way?
The last step is to run this by the internal brand team to see how it all lands. Collaboration will help it reach maximum authenticity.