Voice & Tone

Tips for speaking in the right voice

To stay true to the IU brand voice:

  • Stay away from higher-ed speak. Use words that the layperson is apt to understand—not industry jargon.
  • Talk to your audience. Don’t be afraid to use first- and second-person pronouns.
  • Keep it brief. Avoid long-winded sentences and convoluted paragraphs.

How to strike the right tone

Tone varies within the constraints of voice, depending on who you’re talking to, where you’re talking to them, and why.

You might use a casual, informal tone when communicating with prospective students on a website. But when you’re creating an invitation for a lecture presented by a prominent researcher, a more formal tone is appropriate.

Throughout this book, we will show you how your tone should change depending on context, affecting not only your word choices, but also your selection of color, font, and graphic features.