Voice guide part 2: Who are you?

A voice guide starts with describing who you are (and are not)

Yael Ben-David
2 min readMay 21, 2024

A voice guide has three parts:

  1. “We are…”
  2. “We are not…”
  3. Examples of getting it right and wrong

“We are…” is a list of characteristics that describe your personality. Your product voice may be friendly, genuine, and relaxed. Or you may be better described as technical, expert, and direct. There are definitely products out there with each of these voices.

Choosing the right voice depends on what’s appropriate for your product space and goals, and what resonates with your user base. Let’s take a security app that I’ve installed in order to protect my privacy online. The app space and goals are intense, the personality should be alert, hype-focused, up to date on the latest developments in cyber security. That’s who I’m looking to interact with in this experience, that’s the voice that will resonate with me, instill trustworthiness, and foster a long-term relationship. It reflects the app space and goals and what I’m expecting and looking for in this context. It will be expressed in the content and character of the copy throughout the product experience.

I expect to interact with someone totally different offline, after hours, when I’m looking to put my feet up at the end of the day, watch a good show and order takeout. If those apps feel intense, I’m outta there. Now I’m looking to hang out with someone chill, not in a rush or hyper-focused. So take a minute (or several days or weeks in collaboration with others) thinking through who you are. Make a list.

Step 1: We are…

Next, we’ll talk about how to write “…but we are not”. Heads up: It’s much harder than “We are…”!