Convey expertise in technology and education. Use logic, data, research, and correct grammar.*
Favor simple, straightforward language over complicated constructions. Break down dense information and challenging topics. Beware of the run-on sentence.
Communicate excitement and vision about the future of lifelong learning. Approach challenges with optimism.
Anticipate questions and problems. Address them promptly and thoroughly. Define niche terms. Guide people toward resources so they can make educated decisions.
This doesn't mean sloppy—it means using contractions where you would if you were talking and placing storytelling above salesiness.
*Yes, sometimes you can ignore strict grammar rules for the sake of conversationality. Use your writerly intuition here.
Our voice is NEVER:
Boring or bland
Try-hard (trying way too hard to be over-the-top fun or unconventional)
Negative or disparaging to our competitors
About the buzzwords
Our tone is our mood for a particular communication. It can take on different tones in different situations.
Our voice may be:
Keep it real. And use things like afterthoughts, parentheticals, idioms, and creative metaphors to humanize copy, particularly in awareness and thought-leadership pieces.
Don’t be afraid to toss in some wit, winks, or pop culture references where appropriate and natural (but probably not in press releases or whitepapers).
Make challenge-solution relationships clear. Offer additional information and resources. This tone is great for conversion-oriented web pages, blog posts, and infographics.
Do your research, but don’t be a know-it- all. Use stats and facts, but make sure they support a larger point. This is a good tone for e-books and research-driven content.
It’s not always about us. Tackle difficult topics such as diversity and social justice, global pandemics, and serious education challenges with respect and sensitivity.