Hey…watch your tone! Perhaps we’ve all heard that one before. Truly though, the way you speak to a spouse or a partner may not be the same as the way you talk with your mother-in law.
Or your doctor. Or your teenage niece, shy neighbor, stubborn accountant or a hard-to-read boss. Language has nuances, as do relationships. Therein lies something powerful but true: the way we communicate is amazingly complex and brilliant. It’s all about finding the right notes—but also, the notes that are the truest to yourself.
The same is true for your blog and brand’s voice and tone. How do you go about speaking to the entire world your love, passion, devotion and experience with fashion? You want your audience to feel a unique camaraderie with you, consider you a trustworthy source, and become their frequent and stylishly-dressed party host in their digital world. Make your audience feel at ease with these tried and true ways to find and stick to your honest, most real-you voice
The Why, The Who and The What You Want
Tone is a conscious decision about language based on the purpose, the audience, and the desired outcome of the story. Fashion bloggers should answer these questions before starting any post, posting any image, or putting forth any content that their audience will see and digest:
- Why am I writing this?
- Who am I writing it to?
- What do I want the readers to learn, understand, or think about?
That’s right. If you are looking for consistency, every post, every image, every tweet, Facebook Live or Instagram Story, you should ask yourself these questions. If you are truly sticking to being yourself, you’ll know that content and audience are a married pair. That perfect pairing relies on consistent messaging, so nudge yourself with these basic questions until they’re square in your good habits column.
How will you know? Go back and read your last 5-10 brand messages (a few posts, a handful of social messaging). Does it sound like the same person wrote the same fashion advice and to the same people? Did each offering give the audience something tangible? Yes? You got this.
It’s also important you don’t confuse your voice with personal narrative, veteran fashion blogger Diana Baros (aka The Budget Babe) says. “Your audience wants to get to know you as a real person, so the more personal you can be, the better,” she says. “But they also want value—so weave in personal anecdotes as they relate to the specific fashion or style advice. It’s fashion but with a point of view.”
More Audience? Brand Ambassadorship? Yes, Please!
If it’s longevity, meaningfulness, attractiveness to brands and share potential you want (who doesn’t?), ask yourself these thought starters too:
- What will my audience share, bookmark, keep, come back to? How can my writing encourage this?
- What will answer the top question(s) my audience has right now?
- What can I write that is memorable? What will they understand, absorb, and remember?
- Do I feel good personally about the information I shared? Did I make a difference in their lives today?
While some of this might seem excessive or silly, it’s going to bring you a natural consistency, and yes, a tried and trusted voice! A strong, well-defined voice is the bridge between you and your audience, and major brands too. “The Budge Babe” says, “Companies want to work with bloggers who convey a positive, inspirational and uplifting message,” she says. “It’s okay to talk about serious stuff, in fact, this will endear your readers to you. Just keep in mind that readers and brands ultimately prefer a positive tone overall.”