Differentiating Brand Voice in an Age of Excessive Exclamation!!!

Posted by Owen Matson, Ph.D. on Apr 21, 2017 7:16:16 PM

Excessive Exclamation Points?!!!  Who? Me?  

I recently received a note expressing concern over my “overuse” of exclamation points: “You might want to reconsider your tendency to overuse exclamation points.” Overuse?  Overly emphatic?  Me?  OK.  Fair enough. Still, I requested an explanation. I wasn’t offended by the feedback.  I was just curious about the commentary.  I sensed a big discussion behind the advice. Alas, I received no reply. 

So I began to think about the meaining of my reader’s feedback.  I "might" want to reconsider my overuse of exclamation points?  Was this a complaint?  A soft recommendation?  Sarcastic criticism?  

At the end of the day, the use of exclamation points is about communicating tone.  And tone is largely a matter of taste—as in “there is no accounting for…”

For my part, when it comes to issues of usage and style, I tend to be rather pragmatic: Whatever works, I say!!!  

Still, tone is hard to determine in online communication.  But then that's the whole point: Communicating tone in digital media requires content writers rethink the traditional rules and tools of style--including the use punctuation to project meaning and tone.  Effective brand writing across digital channels is a complex issue, one that requires more than placing a ban on multiple exclamation points. Here's some issues to consider...

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Topics: Content Strategy, B2B Digital Marketing, B2B Brand Writing, Brand Voice, B2B Content Writing, Digital Marketing, B2B Branding,, Brand Strategy

Does Your Brand Pass the Swag Test?

Posted by Owen Matson, Ph.D. on Apr 11, 2017 6:02:28 PM

The Swag Test:

To evaluate the impact of your brand, consider the swag test.  Offer potential or existing clients a hat or some other bit of wearable swag that bears your brand.  Would they wear it like a John Deere hat?  If you don't have the necessary swag, don't worry. The following questions also work as a useful thoughtg experiment: 

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Topics: Differentiators, Brand, B2B Branding,, Brand Identity, Brand Development, Branding

What Band is Your Brand?  Pop Icons Provide a Language for Brands.

Posted by Owen Matson, Ph.D. on Apr 7, 2017 3:28:54 PM

 

Brand Archetypes are nothing new.  That's the problem.  They need a refresh. 

Marketers have long used mythical archetypes to fashion brand stories.   Mythic archetypes appeal to the values of audiences by explaining how a brand enables participation in a heroic story.  For instance, in an article for the Content Marketing Institute, Bryan Rhoads explains that the archetypal “Overcoming the Monster” story line follows a prototypical “David vs. Goliath” structure that places customers as the quintessential “underdogs” in a fight against a “larger evil”: 

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Topics: B2B Brand Writing, Brand Voice, B2B Branding,, Brand Identity, Brand Archetypes, Brand Story, Brand Development

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