Slack: Conveying Your Brand Tone In Copywriting

slackslack in use


We’ve been using Slack here as a team for quite a while now, and what can I say – I just love them. Note that I’m not saying “I love what this tool does” – I’m saying I love them. I’m using the word “them” because they have such great branding and message that you think about the company more as a whole. They are more than just a tool to get from point A to point B.

How did they create such a great message and culture around their brand? One way is through their glorious copywriting. They’ve have a history of being lighthearted and fun with their copywriting. Like the following copy on the loading screen:

you're here! The day just got bertter

Branding and messaging is all about tone. In order to remain on-point, it’s really important to convey your brand in all your communication. Check out their latest Mac update: (emphasis mine)

What’s New in Version 1.1.7
We had a slight distribution hiccup with version 1.1.6…so we held our breath, drank a glass of water and made a 1.1.7 to replace it.

– New: Some plug-ins were giving up, and letting us down by not showing video, making people run around reinstalling plug-ins or desert the idea of watching video entirely. All our lovely media providers now serve us direct content that means we’ve been able to say goodbye to plug-ins forever. Now nothing can stop your roll.

– Fixed: We updated crash reporting library to fix problems with it, itself, crashing. Very meta.
– Fixed: The click targets of the team icons down the left side of the window were sometimes smaller than they should have been. It is no longer frustratingly difficult to click on the team icons.
– Fixed: A bug that would prevent files from downloading properly—well, at all—for users on Mac OS X 10.7. (Side note: this is the last version of the app that will support OS X 10.7, because of stuff like this.)
– Fixed: a rare bug that could leave you staring at a sign-in screen when all you wanted was to reload your content. We love our sign-in page, and first impressions are important… but not that important.
– Fixed: if your Mac abruptly shut down or restarted there was a chance that some of Slack’s cached data would be left in a bad state. We now detect that this has happened and recover, which we feel is preferable to just crashing every time you launched the app.
– Fixed: an unfortunate bug that would cause unfortunately poor performance when viewing Posts.
– Fixed: a font loading issue that would cause some ligatures to not render.
– Fixed: sometimes you’d get a notification, and you’d reply directly from the notification, and the reply would never get posted. Now they always do.
– Fixed: and as if that wasn’t enough, sometimes we’d accidentally clear all of your Slack notifications, whether you’d read them or not. Hoo boy, that was a doozy. We do not do that anymore.

They’re pretty funny. And through the lighthearted messaging, they turn what could be previously a frustrating experience (“oh man not another update”) into a laugh. Way to to Slack!

Another company that is really on the tone game is Mailchimp. Check out their site Voice and Tone and their Style Guide.


Authored By

Managing Partner / Creative Director

Sara loves design, typography, user experience, and art. She gives talks around the globe on web design, user experience, typography, and more. A seasoned designer, Sara has done work for clients such as Disney Publishing and Flickr. She loves open source, her pets, traveling, and WordPress.

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