What is the recipe for the perfect blog post? How do you share valuable information, that is interesting, insightful and gets you leads?
Throughout we will look at how to craft your tone of voice and stand out from the crowd.
The opportunities for your accounting firm to position itself in the marketplace and separate yourself from the sea of “all accountants look the same” exciting. If you are prepared to act more like a media company that publishes articles, and less like a firm that churns out the latest HMRC information, you will be a winner.
WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO SOUND LIKE?
Before you start blogging you need to think about how you are going to sound to the reader.
Good content will enable you to engage in meaningful conversations with the reader, bad content will not be good for your brand.
If you were to have a conversation face to face with the reader you can vary your tone and adapt and change what you are saying and how you are saying in response to real-time feedback. Writing does not offer this luxury. It is a one-way medium.
For this you have to carefully consider the “tone of voice” you want your blogs to have, to ensure they portray you and your firm in the right light.
One thing is for sure though, as a professional firm you may fall into the trap of creating a tone of voice document that is just common sense and a waste of your time. In short, your document would be meaningless.
Let me share what I mean:
Professional: You are writing for your accounting firm. You are hardly likely to be unprofessional.
Human: Are you a robot, are your robots? I have yet to see the advances in technology get to the stage where we all become robots.
Helpful: Would you purposely go out and write unhelpful blog posts?
Authoritative: This is why you are writing a blog post in the first place. You are there to share your expertise.
Informative: Are you really going to write a blog post without information in it?
The problem with these words is that whilst they are not wrong, they just won’t help you craft excellent blog articles, and these words should be just taken for granted.
Other words you need to avoid in your tone of voice document are:
Funny: Who is to say what is, my 15-year-old thinks he is hilarious, you can imagine my view most of the time!
Technical: This is the kind of information you are going to produce and is not a “tone” of voice.
Friendly: Do you need to have this in your tone of voice guidelines – are you naturally rude?
Modern: Really? Modern to me means text speech. I won’t be writing in Latin so the other alternative is plain English.
As you can see, most tone-of-voice documents are created because they are on the to-do and quite honestly are no help to anyone.
You have now got a good feel for what shouldn’t be in your guidelines (because the above is just common sense) so let’s have a look at creating something worthwhile.
Before you have even started writing your articles you have done the work on your client Avatar. You are clear on the kind of content your ideal client consumes and you know where they are consuming content.
Here at TwentyTwo Agency, we are very aware that our ideal clients are not hanging out on Facebook all day every day. We also know that they are spending a little time on Twitter, and they see the most benefit on LinkedIn.
All of this information will affect the tone of voice that we use to write our articles.
CHOOSING YOUR TONE OF VOICE
There is an approach to crafting your tone of voice that we use here at TwentyTwo Agency and what we teach in our training programmes for accounting firms.
It is a simple matter of asking certain questions that conjure up how you want to express yourself.
These simple questions are:
1. If your accounting firm was a Radio DJ, who would it be?
2. If your accounting firm was an actor who would it be?
3. If your accounting firm was to be featured in an advert, during which TV programme would the advert be shown?
4. If your accounting firm was a magazine or a newspaper, which one would it be?
5. If your accounting firm was a news channel, which one would it be?
6. If your accounting firm was a Netflix box set which one would it be?
7. As the writer of the article, which TV character would you be?
Number 7 is very important. Although you need an overall tone of voice for the firm, you also need individual voices for the writers of your articles and marketing. You will not all have the same personality and this needs to be clear.
You see, I have met a few accountants on my travels and more often than not I can relate them to TV Characters.
I have met the that likens himself to the suave Harvey from Suits and the partner who loves the 60’s and likens himself to the and sophisticated Don Draper from Mad Men. I have met the accountant who is a mixture of Dick Van Dike and Roger Moore.
When you weave your personality into your tone of voice, then you enjoy writing so much more.
These 7 simple questions will enable you to picture how you wish to sound when you are writing your content, and recording your videos/audios.
You really don’t need to craft a document that says you are friendly yet traditional, or professional yet funny! What good are these documents and what do they mean?
What you really need to do is show the world that you are people, real people with strong personalities. It is your personality, your style, your “je nai se quoi” that will ensure you stand out from the crowd.
One of the key things we promote here at Agency is to be a Maverick Accountant. It’s time for you to think and act in an independent way, not follow the norm… It’s time to be considered as something of a maverick in the accounting world…
In 2018 we are launching our 6-Month Marketing Implementation Programme. To register your interest and be the first to get more details click here: MARKETING IMPLEMENTATION PROGRAMME DETAILS