Make Me Social’s Phil Grech named his blog The Social Media Mullet because, like the hairstyle, it will discuss the fusion of “business” and “casual” under the banner of online communications.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Guess what I’m going to write about?
That’s right: not Thanksgiving. Even better, I’m going to write about why we should not be afraid to be ourselves – even online – even if you are a business.
Defining and refining the voice of the brand begins in the onboarding process. The onboarding process involves a lot of information, but one of the more critical parts is defining the voice. Every brand should have their own unique voice. Depending on the client, we suggest a possible position on the sliding scale of how our tone should come across when writing content.
Let’s say that one side of the scale is professional and the opposite side is personal. You never want to be completely on one side or the other. Rather, you want to adjust to be somewhere in the middle, perhaps leaning more strongly on one side or the other. A financial corporation would do better leaning on the professional side, while a fun, hip restaurant would do better leaning on the personal side. In both situations however, neither lose touch with one side or the other.
This is what works. This is what we have seen work. This is what we have tried, tested, and proven to work. But sometimes, people feel that their voice should be “all professional, no personal.”
I understand the hesitation to relax and loosen up a bit. It’s your company in someone else’s hands. And the people who want “all professional, no personal” have great intentions. But it doesn’t work. As an example, take a look at this clip from The Office.
Funny, right? But it also makes a point.
Social media is an ongoing conversation. Social media directly reflects how we communicate in person, as human beings. In fact, the success of a social media site will partially depend on how well it can best replicate the process of human interaction. Replicating this process online is a difficult endeavor considering scientists are still studying and trying to figure out the experience in and of itself.
There is one thing we can easily extract from human interaction however. It’s that we want to know that the people we are talking to are people. We want to know that the people we are interacting with have a voice. No one wants to communicate with talking heads (except for The Talking Heads). We want personality. We want charm. We want a little style and flavor.
The people are asking for it, so don’t be afraid. Give it to them. If you’re going to have a brand, you’re going to have a voice. Let that voice be heard.
Phil Grech is a Content Manager for Make Me Social. He published his first book, “Don’t Waste Your Hands”, in 2009. He studied English and Philosophy at Flagler College. In his spare time, he reads, works out, drinks an unhealthy amount of coffee, and searches for good conversation.