Defining your house style

by Stratton Craig

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“Language is as much a part of how you present yourself – and how other people react to you – as the way you dress”.

Caroline Taggart and J.A. Wines

Ever since the earliest known grammar systems were established in Iron Age India, language and grammar have continued to evolve as foreign influences and the requirement for new words to describe new inventions and inevitable social changes emerge. A novel written 50 years ago will feature stark differences to one written today.

The importance of grammar has been rather lost in the current education system although business communications still demand a high standard of understanding. With a number of our clients we have either developed or worked with strict house style guidelines, which can include rules on anything from hyphenation and capitalisation to word preferences and sentence structure.

As much as the colours in your logo, the font used on your collateral and the company strapline all define your brand, so too does the language you use and the finer details that go with it. By using the correct grammar and style rules, your brand can communicate clearly with your audience and is less open to interpretation.

Perhaps most importantly, consistency across your communications demonstrates professionalism. After all, as Taggart and Wines highlight, ‘if we alwez rote howeva we pleazd itd b like turning up 2 an interview in ript jeanz n a scruffy t-shirt, y’know?’.

If you’d like to discuss developing a house style and how to implement it, please call Harriette on 0117 9371 383 or email [email protected].

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