Crafting Your Brand Voice with Ann Handley

ann handley on brand

Ann Handley is the Chief Content Officer at MarketingProfs and the Wall Street Journal bestselling author of Everybody Writes. Recently, she embarked on a “down-to-the-studs” second edition of the book—revised, expanded, and 10% funnier. We talk about all of this—including why she didn’t want to promise more than 10% funny—this week on the On Brand podcast.

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About Ann Handley

Ann Handley is a Wall Street Journal bestselling author who speaks worldwide about how businesses can escape marketing mediocrity to ignite tangible results. IBM named her one of the seven people shaping modern marketing. Ann is a digital marketing pioneer and the Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs, the leading marketing training company with more than 600,000 subscribers.

She is the Wall Street Journal bestselling author of Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content, and co-author of Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business. Her books have been translated into 19 languages, including Turkish, Korean, Italian, Chinese, and Japanese.

A LinkedIn Influencer, she has more than 420,000 followers on Twitter and is consistently named one of the more influential marketers on social media. She has contributed commentary and bylines to Entrepreneur magazine, IBM’s Think Marketing, Inc. magazine, Mashable, Huffington Post, American Express, NPR, and the Wall Street Journal.

Ann lives in Boston, where she is Mom to creatures two- and four-legged. She is an E.B. White Superfan, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel enthusiast, and a novice tap dancer. She escapes it all by retreating to her tiny-house office, which houses her vintage typewriter collection.

Episode Highlights

“Mediocrity has always been there,” Ann began as I asked about her focus on helping marketers escape a world of content mediocrity. However, she was quick to note that she never wants to make people feel bad—especially about their writing.

What someone really means when they say ‘I’m terrible at writing.’ We have a lot of baggage with writing. “When someone says ‘I’m terrible at writing what they usually mean is ‘I’m terrible at grammar.’” But that’s just one piece of writing. And anyone can write. Or, perhaps a better way to say it is, everybody writes …

“A fun romp through writing.” Recently, the second edition of Ann’s bestseller Everybody Writes came out. New revised, and 10% funnier. Why just 10%? She explained that she didn’t want to overpromise on the funny.

The sunroom of brand voice. This ambitious undertaking had her taking the book “down to the studs” and rebuilding and in some cases removing sections. She also expanded the concept of brand voice into its own section. Think your brand isn’t cool enough for brand voice? Check out the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District (a favorite of Ann’s).

More on Bing’s use of AI. Here’s the link to The New York Times article Ann mentioned on Bing’s use of AI.

What brand has made Ann smile recently? “Cunk on Earth,” a hilarious new series on Netflix starring Diane Morgan. “It made me laugh out loud and I don’t do that a lot.”

To learn more, check out her website and connect with her on LinkedIn.

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Until next week, I’ll see you on the Internet!