Virtual Seminar

Voice and Tone: Creating Content for Humans

March 2013

76 minutes

  • Nail your brand voice—and keep it consistent
  • Determine your tone of voice
  • Write content with personality
  • Craft a practical style guide

The organizational content we’re creating for the web is too often formal, lacking emotion. Writing content for humans is challenging, and doing it while articulating your organization's personality is even more difficult.

MailChimp is one company that’s successfully established a brand voice—and is still working to keep it. As a result, they’ve become known for their punchy, honest messaging that builds trust with users and makes them smile, too.

Hear from Kate Kiefer Lee—the woman behind MailChimp's interactive style guide at—about how to establish voice guidelines that inspire your writers' creativity.

She'll share real-life examples of empathetic writing and talk about the importance of establishing content standards that make corporate writing fun.

  • Nail your brand voice—and keep it consistent

    You'll create content that your users love to read.

    • Start with empathy to write conversational copy
    • Determine which questions to ask that reflect your customers' perspective
  • Determine your tone of voice

    You'll hear how tone and voice are related (and how they're different, too).

    • Identify content types and consider readers' emotional states
    • Determine when to inject humor and when to keep a straight face
  • Write content with personality

    You'll answer users' questions with genuine content.

    • Read your writing out loud to identify any robotic language
    • See examples of good (and not so good) copy
  • Craft a practical style guide

    You'll set standards for content creators and teach your organization's brand voice.

    • See writing guide examples from orgs like Warby Parker, Tufts University, and Gov.UK
    • End your struggles in establishing a cohesive voice across many writers