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How to have a consistent tone in writing?
To have a consistent writing style, it helps to have the same people doing most of the writing.
But in any case, you should have a brand writing guidelines that explain the following:
- Brand tone: How do you want your writing to be perceived? This will depend on your brand positioning. Example styles: Serious and textbook-y; scientific and analytical; conversational and straightforward; humorous and satirical. (It helps to also include examples of other people's content to use as a reference point.)
- Point of view: Once you've determined the tone, you can figure out the best point of view. Third-person sounds authoritative but can feel detached. First person "we" represents the company in a more conversational way and makes it feel more personal, and "I" even more so (though the focus being more on the individual writer).
- Formatting style: Formatting contributes significantly to how content is read. For example, all blog posts should have similar paragraph lengths, the same frequency and types of subheaders, etc. Establish these guidelines so things look consistent.
- Content expectations: What elements need to be included in the writing? Must you have a call-to-action? Supporting research with external or internal sources linked to back up your claims?
- Graphics: All included images and graphics should follow the same "rules." Will you use real photographs, illustrations, or both? What sizes and colors should be used? Will you include people or just abstract images?
Analyze competitors' content to see what works, explore what has been most successful for you in the past, and develop this content guide to keep all of your writers on the same page.
Thank you, Amanda :)
Amanda nailed it. To add to her awesome post in terms of brand guidelines, having some outline of user segmentation is incredible helpful. That is really where you can start to define what Amanda was referring to in terms of positioning. It all falls under this umbrella to start funneling down.
Trying to determine a voice without this can prove to be challenging and may lead to inconsistent or less than desirable results down the line.
write each piece and make each edit from top to bottom in one sitting...pieces may differ, but tone will stay
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