Brand communication: Mind your brand language

Alastair Herbert and Ali Goode

Too many brands use generic words, making brand language repetitive and dull, but if they adopt a distinctive tone of voice and careful use of metaphors, they can own the words they put in the minds of their consumers.

In the 21st century, words are proliferating, but the ways brands work with language has barely changed since the 1950s; brands are working hard to understand the increasing social media babble. Many are now reaping the benefits of managing and understanding their own verbal identity.

Distinctive brand language makes it easier for conversations to connect across all media. Analytics and psychology are revealing the routes ahead. Language from sets of competitors, consumers and commentators is Big Data. Software is revealing its insights. Words, and their psychological impact, can now be measured and mapped at a strategic level.