The Helen Arkell Dyslexia Centre is the longest established and most widely acknowledged institution for people who learn differently.
Pioneered by Dame Helen Arkell – who has been at the forefront of dyslexia support since she started teaching in 1953 –the Centre wanted to build on the outstanding work it already does by honing its message and building its reputation and profile still further.
Already working through an intensive brand process with creative wizz kids Sideways, we were brought onboard to develop a unique tone of voice for the Centre that would capture its personality and help them stand out from the crowd.
We started by doing our research. Looking at key competitors and influences we built a picture of how words can be used to convey character and what the Centre could learn from these organisations – good and bad.
Then it hit us. The thread that tied everything together, the unique proposition around which the Helen Arkell Dyslexia Centre’s tone of voice could hang.
We interviewed the team and students at the Centre, learnt about Helen, read her book and marvelled at her tenacity, pioneering spirit and bold approach. We laid everything out, studied and considered. Then it hit us. The thread that tied everything together, the unique proposition around which the Helen Arkell Dyslexia Centre’s tone of voice could hang.
We began to write. Drawing on all the research, interviews, conversations and lightbulb moments we created a tone of voice proposition and writing guide that was unique to Helen Arkell and that everyone at the Centre could understand, use and be inspired by. We shaped their tone of voice so it would ring true with the values, spirit and creativity of Helen Arkell and would resonate with all their stakeholders, giving writers the freedom to use different elements for different audiences while still staying true to the overarching brand language.
Once the writing guide was in place we met the team and spent a day working through their new way with words together. From exercises to help them understand the value of tone of voice to writing workshops where they all put the tone of voice into action we helped everyone on the team get to grips with the new Helen Arkell way with words for the situations they were writing in and the people they were writing for.
Everyone at Helen Arkell Dyslexia Centre was thrilled with the results and put the tone of voice into action straight away. They’ve already raised their media profile, boosted their online community and attracted fresh interest as a result.
We can’t wait to see where they take it next.