When talking with clients about tone and style, Innocent Drinks often crops up. It seems for anyone wanting a really friendly and fun tone of voice, Innocent grabs their attention. But what is it about Innocent’s copywriting that people love so much?
And can anyone pull it off?
1. It’s a journey
I love the fact that Innocent take you on a journey on their `Us` page. You get inside their thoughts and feelings, their decisions, their ups, their downs. And once you’ve read it, you feel like you’ve learnt something interesting about them.
You’re only ever reading 20-30 words at a time making it quick and easy to read, so you can’t help but scroll onto the next bite-size nugget of info because it’s easy to do. And at the end of it, you feel like you’ve tasted a bit of the journey yourself.
2. Humour, not comedy
You can’t help but feel warmed by Innocent’s light-hearted content and wacky style. Their sense of humour and casual approach make it easy to read and hard for you to turn away!
But MOST importantly, Innocent’s copywriting doesn’t try to be funny! They don’t crack jokes. They don’t try too hard to make you LOL. They don’t force it. They just sprinkle enough fun into their copy for you to enjoy reading it.
3. Sound bites
Innocent’s copy is scattered with sound bites. On their main website pages, their bottles, their marketing materials, their adverts, their packaging. Everything.
Why? Because it gets a message across quickly and simply. It’s catchy and slips easily into your head, so it’s easier for you to process the information. Just because their copy is fun to read, doesn’t mean everyone will read it all, so the sound bites sum up the key message.
4. Friendly tone
Innocent’s copy makes you feel like you’re just having a casual chat. And that’s the key to creating a friendly tone. There’s no jargon. No overly complicated words. Just great word choices and sentences written how we’d say them.
Plus when you go to the `Us` page, the first word you read is “hello”. Not “welcome”. People don’t say welcome when their chatting informally. Well, nobody I know anyway.
5. Broken sentences
Whilst the grammar police may turn on their sirens at this technique, it’s perfect for Innocent’s tone. And it’s a great technique to use where you want to create a friendly tone.
The fact is, when we’re informally chatting with someone, we’re always using broken sentences. We start with `and` and `but`, or don’t include a subject in our sentence. And amazingly, nobody cares! So why can’t you use broken sentences in your copy?
You can. And by using them in the copy, Innocent are building the illusion of a conversation and creating a more personal connection with their audience. They don’t overdo it – just occasionally throughout.
6. Easy to read
Take a look at Innocent’s website and you’ll have to do a bit of digging to find many sentences over 30 words long. There’s no jargon or technical words, only words that any 10 year old should be able to understand.
Does that make it to childish? No, not at all. The fact is, the harder it is to read, the harder it is to get you message across. So by keeping it simple, Innocent are not only getting to the point quicker, but making it easier to explore information on more pages, and get stuck into the good stuff elsewhere on the site. Whatever your age!
7. Consistent voice
Consistency is key. The Innocent voice echoes throughout their copy. And whilst the great images and visuals add to the friendliness of the brand, the copy helps to create the perfect voice.
It doesn’t matter where you see Innocent’s copy, or what it’s on, it feels like you’re always talking to the same person.
And whilst Innocent haven’t invited me to their office for a nosey around (yet), I can bet my bottom banana that every single person on their team knows the voice of Innocent, and knows how to recreate it time and time again.
8. Fun blog
It’s not so much about how the blog is written, but the topics Innocent cover in their blogs. They don’t do sales pitches or updates on the change of regulations affection the consumption of banana based drinks. Just fun stuff, cool ideas and some great customer interactions.
Innocent know that by creating a better online experience for their customers, they’re creating brand ambassadors and people who want to interact with the brand.
And great experiences don’t just come from trying to sell a product your customers like or need.
9. Fresh packaging
The packaging seems to be the thing that really got people’s attention in the early days, for all the reasons I’ve already talked about above. Not only is it original, entertaining, fun and lively, but it keeps changing.
Whilst packaging always changes for all products, there’s more to Innocent’s containers than just the product itself. Their packaging gets their message across in fun and imaginative ways.
And by changing the randomness of the content of the packaging, they’re keeping it fresh. It’s hard to get bored of it! So as long as their customers keep engaging with it, they’ll keep buying it for the experience, not just the taste.
So, can anyone pull off the Innocent style?
The simple answer is no.
Too many people think that Innocent’s style is all about the humour. So they try and crack jokes and be funny. And it just sounds too forced.
They forget that Innocent’s style is personal. It’s their own voice built around its own brand. But if you get to grips with the techniques, you can create something just as friendly, engaging and easy to read.
The techniques I’ve talked about aren’t new, and lots of people use them. But it’s the techniques that create the tone and the voice. And they’re not right for every business. So ask yourself:
- Who is my target audience?
- What tone of voice will fit that audience best?
- What techniques can I use to create that voice?
- How can I make sure every interaction with my target audience reinforces our voice?
So instead of trying to become Innocent and failing, use the techniques they use and apply them to your own business. Succeed in finding your own voice and your own style.
Take a look at the Innocent Drinks website and have a look at all these techniques for yourself.