Five Point Checklist for Brand-Strengthening Copy
Is your marketing communications copy strengthening your brand? To be successful, your message must not only be compelling, but it must also be aligned with your brand position. Here are five key points that will help you to assess the brand-strengthening potential of your words:
1. Key messages
Your brand is most likely based on some form of ‘proof points’: arguments or aspects of your operation that support your brand position. Perhaps your messaging guidelines include an elevator pitch that succinctly describes your brand. Do the key messages of this specific communication reflect the key messages of your brand?
Effective copy is written with a focus on the reader. Have you researched and considered your audience? Have you described your product, service or offer in terms that are relevant to your audience and that they will understand?
Your branding/messaging guidelines may contain key descriptive words or phrases that capture the essence of your brand. For example, your brand may be about expertise and authority or perhaps innovation and vitality. Have you incorporated your brand’s descriptive language?
Your brand essence and ‘personality’ will also dictate the tone or style that you use. The level of formality (e.g., business, casual), the tone (e.g., friendly, reserved, aggressive) and even spelling and grammar (you may want to be seen as Canadian, American, etc.), must all relate to the established personality of your brand. Again, if you have messaging guidelines, your tone/style should be specified within them.
5. Corporate elements
Many branding standards include certain corporate elements that must be included in all communications, such as taglines, boilerplate copy, and a specific format for contact information. Are these elements included as appropriate? If it’s a document that you are laying out yourself, for example, a news release, are you covering off basic required visual elements, such as the right fonts, logos, etc.?
By cross-checking your writing against these five points, you’ll go a long way to ensuring that you are effectively communicating not just your message, but your brand.