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The starting point for all good copywriting is to think about your customer and how you want to speak to them. That ‘how’ then translates into a tone of voice.

So, for example, if you’ve decided you want your business tone to be authoritative, fun, reassuring and open. You need to work out what that actually means. How does this tone work when it comes to writing?

If you’re using a professional copywriter, they should be confident about picking any tone attribute and going with it.

But if you’re writing your own copy it can be tougher.

You need to know how to translate your tone of voice into useable guidelines not only for you to use but also for guest bloggers, internal staff, marketing agencies and others.

Recently, I’ve been working with a rental company – they decided they wanted their brand to be known as:

  • Approachable
  • Honest
  • Knowledgeable
  • Reliable

To help them understand what these words mean and how to express them I created the following tone statements. The aim was to provide a quick reference and a succinct summary of each word and then to convey this tone when writing.

What do you think of them?

(Click to download a larger version of each as a PDF)

honest knowledgeable reliable approachable


Want to write your own tone of voice guidelines?

If you’re writing your own Tone of Voice guidelines for a client, why not use my template?

This document took me years to developer and  includes everything you need to create impressive TOV guidelines for your client, covering:

  • Positioning statement
  • Features and benefits
  • Customer avatar outline
  • Brand personality guides
  • Tone guides
  • General writing guides
  • Formatting and structure guides

Packed with notes and dummy copy to help you understand the process of creating a TOV document.
(35-page Word document)

You can buy it in my Copywriting Shop

Over to you

What words describe your tone of voice? Do you feel confident writing in your brand tone?

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