Your Essential Guide to When You Should Use I or We

Your Essential Guide to When You Should Use I or We

The ongoing dilemma of whether to use “I” or “We” in business content comes up often and is a tricky subject. While we feel that it can be more of a personal opinion, this is your essential guide to when you should use “I” or “We” in business copy.

Before we dig into the meat of it, we’re going to share a secret with you. The truth is, Ink.e Digital is actually run by a single human. But, we made the conscious choice to use the term “We” in all business correspondence because it made sense for the brand and our goal is to eventually become “We”.

Step 1. Sit down and figure out your brand. If you don’t know who you are, how can you determine if you’re actually an “I” or a “We”?

Figure out the following:

• What do you offer?
• What problem are you solving?
• Why do you do what you do?
• Who is your ideal customer?

Step 2. Ask yourself what the future holds for your brand. Will you be hiring employees or using freelancers/contractors for anything?

If the answer to this question is “Yes”, then you are definitely going to be a “We”.

Step 3. Think about the trust factor within your niche audience. Would they respond better to a single person, or to a group?

This is a serious question. Some types of people can often feel a little out of their element when dealing with a larger organization while others can feel empowered knowing that they have the attention of the single decision-maker.

Step 4. What sounds right to you? Ask your family, closest friends and even customers. Everyone will have an opinion, and breaking it down will really help determine how to refer to your brand.

Step 5. Once you’ve determined whether you’re an “I” or a “We”, make sure to use that term consistently and within the proper context in all business communications.

Do you have a process or an experience that has helped you determine how your business should refer to itself in content? Share it with us in the comments below!

What is a Brand Voice and Why Does It Matter?

What is a Brand Voice and Why Does It Matter?

You’ve probably noticed that we talk about brand voice all the time, but what is it and why does it matter to you? Well, it’s a very important part of content marketing, and it should matter very, very much.

What is a Brand Voice?

Simply put, your unique brand voice is how you speak to your ideal audience.

This voice or tone of speaking is meant to be a fluid combination of your brand culture, mission, audience demographic and the people that you employ.

Brand Culture – Your culture and the way you work on a daily basis plays a big part in how you portray yourselves to a specific set of people. You can easily distill a cultural essence into a way of speaking or a style.

Mission – Your brand mission and why you do what you do MUST be woven into each and every thing that you put out there for your audience. Plus, you and your people must believe in the mission. If you don’t believe in what you’re doing it comes through in the way you speak, and your audience will notice and turn away.

Audience Demographic – Although you should be true to you and your brand, there is also your demographic to think about. You must appeal to your ideal demographic in a way that they’ll appreciate and understand, and unfortunately the demographic that you cater to might determine that.

For Example: If your demographic are parents of young children, you wouldn’t want to use a direct or brash voice.

Your People – Your people ARE your brand. There’s no differentiating the two, and you must always incorporate the spirit of your company into your brand voice. If you employ some very quirky millennials or some very eccentric techies, make sure to filter them into your brand voice in a way that suits your audience.

Think of your brand as a person and always consider the following:

  • What would they act like?
  • How would they speak and act?
  • What kind of people would they surround themselves with?

Why Should A Brand Voice Matter for Your Business?

As a business owner, you should be concerned about whether your brand voice is correct for your brand or not because it directly relates to the kind of community you are building.

Because your brand voice embodies your brand ideals as well as speaks to your specific audience, it is imperative that every business have an appropriately tailored voice. It will be used in every single piece of content that you put out, and even should be used by all client-facing employees.

Using your unique brand voice properly and consistently will appeal to your audience on a personal level, and is meant to create brand advocacy and trust.

So, if you’re not using a brand voice…you should. We can help design the right brand voice for you, and help you learn how to use it. Email us today about a unique brand voice or content marketing strategy.