If I asked your principal to select 3 words they would like your clients to use when describing your agency, what would they be?

agency toneArticle – Lisa Pentland – The Bob Walters Team (BWT) 

Would they be:

“to the point”     –    “legislatively correct”    –     “bullish”     –     “old fashioned”

Probably not!

However, when I read the standard letters of many agencies this is the language and tone that is commonly used. Of course, many of our communications are highly regulated and the fact that they must always be legislatively correct, goes without question.

Our tone on the other hand, is what can separate us from our competitors, it’s what allows our clients to identify with us, reassuring them on the basis of our relationship and essentially carving out our specific market sector.

Your agency is more likely to flourish organically if your tone is appropriate for your market demographic, here are a few ideas:

Locale / Demographic Language Tone Sense
All Accurate Professional Approachable
Coastal Friendly Relaxed Lifestyle
Up & Coming Upbeat Exciting Community
CBD Business like Formal Opportunity
High % investment property Familiar High energy High tech / automated

Perhaps you could workshop the above for your business, but don’t forget “everything speaks” so you’ll also have to consider your fonts and any images you use. Do they align with the message your words are sending?

Overall people and our language is far more casual today than it has been in the past, however, this is never to be confused with unprofessional.

Examples of brands that successfully captured new markets, simply by employing a more youthful and energetic tone even though they were offering virtually the same product:

  1. Vodafone & Telstra
  2. Virgin & Qantas

In each case above, the new players won market share from the incumbents, within a specific demographic due to the language and imaging used in a targeted marketing effort.

In short, they figured out what they wanted, who had it, walked the walk and talked the talk of that specific group and won it!

Lisa Pentland

Lisa’s passion is to empower other business owners and their teams to challenge the status quo, to not compromise on their commitment to provide services they can be proud of and enjoy rewarding careers.


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