Sometimes, tone of voice guides don’t actually offer guidance on how to use tone of voice.
When you read one of these guides and it tells you to write ‘clearly and concisely’, ‘using simple language’ or ‘as if you were talking to someone’, this doesn’t say anything about how to write your message.
This is just advising you of the principles of writing. To be even more pedantic, the principle of writing. Arguably the above statements all have the same sentiment. Although it is a useful sentiment.
When it comes to tone of voice guides, descriptive language is what you need to look out for. If you’re writing to sell jewellery, your copy may need to sound glamorous. Or if you’re writing a blurb for a war-based computer game, your copy may need to sound anarchic.
Delicate becomes devastating
Text messages and social media platforms have become the standard way of sharing news with each other. The kind of news that used to be reserved for phone calls and face-to-face conversations.
It’s easy to get a message across this way, but the lack of tone of voice in these mediums can make delicate situations even more devastating. Just think of how many times someone’s ‘phrased something wrong’ in a text and caused an upset.
They have a message, but they haven’t considered the tone of voice they should be using. While I don’t think it’s great for a couple to break-up over a text, for instance, the situation could be made slightly better by using words that show you’re considering the other person’s feelings.
Be assertive to show that’s what you want to do, but also be soothing so you don’t make your ex-partner even more distressed. And don’t read this blog for relationship advice.
Take a moment
When we read game-changing news in a text, it’s easy to misinterpret the message through misplaced tone of voice. But considering the tone of voice and descriptive language you use could make a big difference.