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WORDS BY WRITERS. CAMPAIGNS BY STRATEGISTS.

Leading Brand Strategies and What We Can Learn From Them

What do Bumble, Liquid Death, Monzo and innocent all have in common? 

They all nailed their brand tone of voice – as well as position and message.

From the beginning of time, companies have splashed their dollars on a swanky new website, flashy marketing graphics and top of the line business coaches. It’s only really within the last decade we have experienced a shift to focus on brand strategy:

– Your position in the market, including customer pain points and how you solve them

– Your brand’s tone of voice and personality to humanize your business

– Your values, story and brand messaging

Why? Because looks will perhaps open the door. But once it’s ajar, many still find themselves pondering the question “what should I say and how should I say it?”

Let’s take a look at these four brands and why they have been so successful: 

BUMBLE

Bumble Lock-ups by Patricia Cruz | Dribbble | Bumble, Gratitude shirts,  Tops designs

Among thousands of dating apps, Bumble positioned themselves as the dating app for women with the proposition “On Bumble, Ladies Always Go First”. 

Their strategy worked because it appealed to women fed up with the “hook-up” culture of Swipe Right and took the pressure off men to make the first move. No one else in the market had taken this approach and without it, Bumble may have peaked and waned in an ever-growing market in full demand. Even as a huge corporation, their tone of voice is entertaining and friendly, giving their brand personality with humour – which never goes amiss in our “content produced for content’s sake” age.

Their core messaging and tone is not only delivered across all platforms including their website, but speaks directly to the customer – almost as if they were customers themselves (and maybe they are!). 

Monzo

“We’re the bank with the hot coral cards.”

Monzo is a new wave app-based bank that ultimately made banking sexy. Even with a more formal tone than other companies mentioned in this blog, they educate clients with a personal touch to banking and explain all their ideas as clearly as they can (without all the obscure lingo that not everyone understands). Their tone of voice focuses on talking to their target market like a friend, moving away from the stereotypical dry, corporate exchanges of many banking organizations. 

Positioning themselves as the bank of the future with a “modern approach to banking”, they were able to hone in on the fact that people no longer want to go to the bank and wait in queues. They instead catered to the modern man and woman – living in an app-based society. 

Since 2015, Monzo has seen significant growth and is constantly rolling out new features. They have become known for making their community the heart of their offer (which was a key part of their initial marketing strategy), even inviting their customer base for name suggestions during their rebrand from Mondo to Monzo. As a result, they have grown a ‘cult’ following.

Take a sneak peak at Monzo’s tone of voice guide here.

Illustration of four people hugging and smiling

Liquid Death Mountain Water

Water…in a can… 

Sexy? No. 

Must buy? Not so sure. 

Engaging? Probably not.

Guess again. Liquid Death is the perfect candidate for why brand tone of voice matters. Every touchpoint of their brand from their tagline “Murder Your Thirst”, to their social media posts and About page, is consistent and quite frankly – utterly hilarious. 

Their team made water in a can reach a staggering 601K following on Instagram alone since being founded in 2017. Since then, it has become the must have water to add to all your favourite cocktails – as well as the secret to youth as advocated by Grandma Pat!

Liquid Death positioned their brand as the anti-hero, creating for themselves a lovely new pocket of an untouched market – all while working their way towards their overarching mission of helping people drink more water and killing plastic pollution. They are the perfect example of how you can have a serious business with meaningful goals while making it engaging.

And we think it’s genius!

logo with strapline | Innocent, Innocent drinks, ? logo

 

innocent

Who remembers when innocent smoothie became the coolest thing to drink, *EVER*?

innocent (always spelt with a i and never an I, according to their brand bible), were one of the first brands to hone in on their tone of voice with a comical twist and implement it across their company – including their products, with “stop looking at my bottom” among one of the many witticisms imprinted onto their bottles.

To this day, many brands have tried to shadow their wit and humour because it simply works. They invented a new category in the 12 brand personality archetypes which was, as you guessed, “innocent”. By using this personality, it meant they could be cheeky without causing offense, and deliver a childish and vibrant energy the customer couldn’t help but love. Innocent was also their entire brand position, tying everything together neatly. The brand then weaved this through every touchpoint of their brand. An example of this is the “suggestion box” on their website, just like something you would find in school to share ideas and help them evolve their products. 

Despite being comical, their message for health-focused drinks remain prominent, with taglines such as “We make healthy drinks. Please buy them so we don’t get fired” and “1,000,000 ways to get your 5-a-day” (P.S notice the rhyme on the last one, a great technique to make your brand message memorable).

Our Takeaway:

On average, it’s predicted we see 6,000 to 10,000 ads per day – which is why corporate newsletters and copycat blogs remain unopened or unanswered. People are inundated with so much content, they have to be selective with what they choose to consume and engage with. At My Networks, we strongly believe customers are interested in one of two things: entertainment or education.

To make our audience fall in love with our brand and our values, we must use these two dominant content pillars to guide our communications and strategies. 

Because you can count on it that people either want to laugh, or they want to be inspired and learn something new.

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