How to tailor your brand voice for Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn
You’re reading an excerpt from Fiction Agency’s blog, where the intention is to share actionable copywriting guides, tips and insights — 800 words later, you’re armed with what you need to elevate your own brand communications.
As individuals, how we present varies depending on settings.
How I am at work is different to at how I am at home with my partner or with my family. How I am when out at a bar with my girlfriends is different to when I’m mingling at an engagement party.
It’s no different for your brand. Your brand voice needs to be tailored for each social media channel, while still adhering to your brand identity.
Reasons why you should do this extra work:
Each platform serves a different purpose and offers different functionalities. The intention and mindset of someone on Instagram is different to what they are on Facebook.
Across channels, your audience size and composition will also likely be different.
The key word? Different.
Meet your customers where and how they are. The likelihood of your posts and messages landing will be higher.
Our crash course in tone of voice on social:
Rather than giving you blanket rules that wouldn’t do you any justice (because every brand is *ding ding* different), here are some considerations to take onboard:
The goal of users in one word*: Information
*obviously, there is so much nuance in why and how people use particular platforms but for simplicity’s sake, we’ve summed it up as one word.
Facebook has become our go-to for news, whether it be world and national current affairs or the latest sneaker and album releases.
Notice that Facebook posts tend to be concise, without giving it all away; they typically refer you to an external link for more.
Accordingly, communicate your key messages enticingly and in record time, knowing that you can (and should) link to your website. Imagine the front page of a newspaper or magazine and what is needed to get you to open it (or click through).
To sum it up, on Facebook, you are direct, punchy and lighter on the details.
The goal of users in one word*: Entertainment
Generally speaking, your customers are on their Instagram Home Feed to be entertained.
They’re scrolling in between meetings or waiting for the (pedestrian) light to turn green. And they are scrolling fast and often mindlessly.
Your photo does most of the heavy lifting for grabbing attention and it is the caption’s job to garner and sustain engagement.
Lean on the age-old art of storytelling. Write with emotion, in a way that’s easy to take in.
Share your message completely because the chances of someone going to to your profile, to your link in bio and then to your website, are slim.
Think of how you tell a story you’ve been dying to share with your best friend. You are conversational, but you use compelling language to hook them in and have them feel what you feel. And you tell it succinctly so that they don’t drift off.
And you don’t leave them hanging with the ending.
The goal of users in one word*: Networking
LinkedIn’s audience are professionals who are in a connecting or learning frame of mind. You’ll either be communicating as a professional yourself or in a B2B manner.
Before you go ahead and use a formal, dry tone of voice, remember that professionals are still people.
Rather than formal, think confident and commanding. Rather than dry, write clearly. Imagine you are delivering a keynote speech. This will ensure that you’re positioning your brand with expertise, respecting the reader’s time and building trust.
If what you’re saying is valuable, you can be more comprehensive on LinkedIn. Someone on this platform is more receptive to long-form writing.
In a nutshell, you’ll typically be most punchy (and slightly elusive) on Facebook, more of a (succinct) storyteller on Instagram and most commanding and clear on LinkedIn.
In case you need another example of how your tone of voice should vary across placements, consider this article.
The tone we use on this blog is more conversational (yet still retaining our professional flair) than the rest of the website.
We recognise that you’re here for quick, actionable insights. Hence it’s important that the language and tone are digestible.
And if you’ve read ‘The Wellspring’, our periodical to spark, solidify and spread ideas, you may have also realised that the tone here is less aspiring and expressive. This is because the intention here is to provide implementable advice, rather than provoke open-ended thought.
‘Applaud’ if you found this article useful and if you have questions, ask away in the comments.