Determining Your Brand Voice When Executing Consumer Influencer Campaigns
According to the Content Marketing Institute, 86 percent of B2C marketers are utilizing content marketing as part of their strategy to drive SEO and organic traffic, increase exposure with target audiences, and enhance brand awareness across multiple touchpoints. This isn’t surprising, as content marketing strategies are on the rise as one of 2018’s most valuable marketing assets.
However, although many marketers are focusing on content marketing through email campaigns, social media, and even in-store experiences, they still struggle with the most critical part of a content strategy: your brand’s tone of voice. The same way you won’t get very far speaking Spanish to someone who only speaks Mandarin, missing the mark on developing a brand voice can often leave your consumers feeling like you’re speaking a different language.
Studies from Harvard Business Review have shown that consumers purchase products from brands they can connect with on an emotional level, so the first step in determining your brand’s voice is understanding how to genuinely create a two-way conversation with your audience. Ask yourself: What motivates my audience? What do they want to hear?
One of the best ways to create an emotional connection with an audience is through user-generated content (UGC): 76 percent of consumers find content posted by other consumers to be more honest than brand content. That’s why our Smiley360 community team at Social Media Link decided to let our consumer influencers define our brand voice.
Members of the Smiley360 community receive products they relate with or are interested in and asked to share their experiences. Through the millions of pieces of UGC produced by Smiley360 influencers, we’ve found that our voice is creative, informative, and funny.
Here’s how we took these three adjectives and turned our UGC into the driving force behind our community’s voice.
Smiley members generate content that wows us—and brands—on a daily basis. We often see content from consumer influencers who receive a product and share unknown use cases or take photos using a product from a different point-of-view. This creative content can help shape your brand’s tone from a truly authentic voice: the consumer’s.
As marketers, our job is not to be creative for the consumer, but instead, help facilitate that creativity with copy that promotes genuine engagement and activation.
Photo Credit: Michelle, Facebook
Consumer influencers are trusted sources of information for products amongst their social circles. They enjoy sharing helpful information, honest reviews and give feedback to brands through surveys and content.
As marketers, crafting language that is informative and relevant provides your consumer influencers the opportunity to exercise their natural talent for informing their peers, with the bonus of valuable insight into not only who your consumer is and how they think, but also how you can best relate to them.
Because you want influencers to be authentic in their recommendations, the challenge here is providing copy that highlights the feature you want consumers to share. However, be careful not to include too much text, which could cause consumers to copy and paste directly from your prompt.
“Made for women, by women with each woman’s needs in mind. So few feminine hygiene products have the ethical and personal responsibility to produce a product that is both personally healthy and globally more healthy than any other such product. I have researched further into the benefits of using o.b. tampons. There is a reduction of TSS risk. The simple cotton core is less irritating and more absorbent than other brands. My entire experience with this Mission has been wonderful. And how many times can you claim an experience related to your period as wonderful? I would highly recommend o.b. tampons to all the women in my life, from newly menstruating young girls to women approaching menopause. For healthy, comfortable and discreet protection.”
Rachael, Brand Connect Forum
A little humor goes a long way, and Smiley members are no strangers to interjecting some laughs into what would otherwise make for some dry subject matter.
A sense of humor gives brands a relatable way to interact with their consumers. It’s important to show a sense of humor in your copy, so consumers understand how to speak about your brand. If you relay copy that is boring, chances are, consumers won’t have fun creating content around your products. A sense of humor gives brands a relatable way to interact with their consumers, and it’s important to mirror that tone in your copy.
“My daughter loves juice like any other child but she goes a little crazy when she’s had sugar. It’s like winding up the energizer bunny. The Motts for Tots Organic juice was a perfect blend that let her enjoy juice without turning into the Tasmanian devil.”
Consistency Is Key
By prompting consumer influencers with specific messaging and ideas, you’ll be surprised at the content they’ll produce. However, once you’ve established your brand voice, it’s up to you to keep it consistent. Familiarity and comfort will give your consumers the feeling that they’re speaking to someone they know. If they feel like they know you, their level of engagement will continue to rise.