UX writing is a term that could be met very frequently in a modern internet environment. If you are following trends than you probably know what is User Experience (shortly UX) writing about and maybe even already use it for your WordPress website. Unfortunately, lots of website owners are not acquainted with the term or do not use its advantages.
Today we are talking about the UX writing: from the term`s definition and explanation to concrete examples from the modern trend creators — Google, Facebook, MailChimp and other. This article will help you to understand UX writing and consider the opportunity to use its tips and tricks for your own WordPress website.
What Is UX Writing?
UX writing uses words (often in a conjunction with visual content) to navigate a user and call appropriate emotions simultaneously. The combination of simple and short guidelines with strong but not annoying emotional load makes UX writing a real matter.
UX writing is often used within the mobile application or web interfaces. That is why we are usually talking about very short texts or even single phrases and words that touches user`s mind and feelings. On the other hand, UX writing is also very important for any landing page, portfolio or other “selling” page of a website.
Another important term created by UX writing is the brand voice. Brand voice is actually your unique manner of communication with a user or a customer. UX writing targets to create and support the brand voice of your business, website or community as the primary task. It is very important to understand how the brand voice works for the successful UX writing strategy and its implementation. That is why we will pay our attention to the steps of brand voice creation first.
Creating a Brand Voice for UX Writing
The process of brand voice creation can be very individual for every business, website or community. But we will provide you with the essential steps to navigate you through this important task. There are actually 6 stages of brand voice creation in common (not taking into the account any of your business or web project`s peculiarities):
- Find the defining words. Try to figure out what is unique and determinant for your business or website. You can take a brainstorm personally or with your team to get a lot of variants. Then narrow all the created variants to 3 words. It would be better if the words are adjectives because you are describing your business or website`s idea with it. After that try to identify each of these words even further with antithesis. For example: smart but not nerdy, friendly but not pesky, confident but not presumptuous.
- Check the uniqueness. Look at your competitors` brand voices and try not to be very similar. You need to take a good investigation first: register with competitors` services and catch their brand voice even if it is not straight-forwardly shown. Then think about the difference of your business compared to them.
- Investigate your audience. User experience writing is obviously based on providing the best communication on the level your audience feels the most comfortable. Analyze your typical users or customers and discover what language they use willingly. Learn this language and use it to grab attention and stay tuned.
- Call to action. Your brand voice should be not only understandable but also inspirational for your target audience. Try to use verbs and phrases which call to action directly without unnecessary clarifications.
- Do not be afraid of mistakes. Your brand voice can not be perfect for each representative of your target audience. That is why sometimes it would not work as an ideal tool. Do not let it undermine your morale and will to develop.
- Instantly develop. This point comes naturally from the previous one. While you do not strife for the perfection, the process of brand voice development should bring you more satisfaction then headache. Remember this rule when it comes to difficult points of brand voice development.
Prominent Brand Voice Examples
If you still do not catch what is UX writing about and how it can work for communication with your website users, we suggest you to observe the example of brand voices from the most successful companies of our time. These examples would explain UX writing`s methods and performance better than any definition. They can also serve as the source of inspiration for your own brand voice creation process.
Google: Clean, Simple and Functional
Clean, simple and functional are the defying words for Google`s brand voice. Google has one of the biggest audiences worldwide. This fact makes the brand voice creation a very comprehensive task. But Google handles the nightmare difficulty level with dignity. The goal which Google sets for itself sounds in such a way: “The main aspect of text is the simplicity to provide maximum understanding for each and every reader, regardless of culture and language they use.”
How Google achieves this difficult goal? First of all, it uses mostly first and second person pronouns: “I”, “you”, “my” and “your”. As a result, Google avoids the “we” pronoun whenever it is possible. Secondly, the service pushes brevity as the most successful communicational strategy for UX writing.
Facebook: Friendly, Simple and Conversational
Facebook`s brand voice is friendly, simple and conversational. As you can see, the simplicity remains one of the main aspects for this service too. It is understandable because the audience of Google and Facebook is very similar (if not the same). At the same time, Facebook tries to motivate its users for more open behavior. That is why friendly and conversational aspects are taking over the functional direction of Google`s brand voice.
Facebook often speaks with its users via short messages within chatbots or tooltips. But it is amazing how these small pieces of UX content motivate people to share their emotions and opinions on different topics. If you wish to stay up to modern UX trends, then you just need to visit Facebook frequently and notice the small changes in UX writing it uses. For example, previously Facebook used the tooltip “What’s on your mind?” in a posting box. Now it has added your name after these words — and the effect changes dramatically!
Dropbox: Straightforward, Helpful and Human
Dropbox is another great example of a service that uses UX writing only within small messages, notifications or interface segments. The keywords of Dropbox are: straightforward, helpful and human. These words show the strategy and main goals the service is working on.
One of the great examples of Dropbox`s UX writing is the approach to the texts on buttons which are shown for a user while account deleting process. The buttons say: “I changed my mind, take me back to Dropbox” and “I still want to downgrade”. With this phrases Dropbox directly talks to a user and receives a complete answer. It is really amazing how UX writing can touch the feelings and reflect them even when a user does not write anything with his or her own words.
MailChimp: Fun, Lively and Young
MailChimp is another prominent example of measured and successful brand voice. MailChimp positions itself as the email marketing platforms that differs from any other boring and flat services. MailChimp attempts to provide its users with fun, lively and young UX writing. And they are doing pretty well on this task!
One of the good examples of their UX writing is the short message infirming that your emails were sent. This message says: “High Fives! Your mail is in the send queue and will go out shortly.” The message is flavored with the GIF image of a monkey arm giving you high fives. This is actually a perfect example of cooperation between UX writing and UX design which should always work together for the sake of best user experience.