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WRITING GUIDE

A writing guide sets basic expectations for how to write within our brand, creating consistency throughout all our communications. We aim to inspire and motivate people by providing them the feeling of possibility.

HOW WE WRITE

Our writing should always be supportive and inclusive, taking into account our audience’s diverse perspectives. We also want to educate. We do this by providing context and relevant details so that our audience understands the breadth of impact our product and service offerings have.

For detailed guidelines to help you write compelling content that expresses our brand in a consistent and recognizable voice, download the Writing Guide.

Short

As the amount of content increases in volume, so does it decrease in size. Short-form messaging has become the status quo, and we see it everywhere: social media, websites, subject lines. Our goals is to create impactful messages in as little space as necessary in order to turn viewers into customers while we have their attention.

SOCIAL MEDIA

Length: 20-75 words

What: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram: these are all mediums where readers are giving you only a few seconds of their time. Make them count.

Example: We create innovative, mission-critical communication solutions and services for commercial, federal and public safety consumers.

AD COPY

Length: 20-50 words

What: Ads are an opportunity to target customers who have shown or might show interest in our services and products. The goal is to succinctly explain who we are and what we’re offering.

Example: Innovative communication solutions for the moments that matter most.

Medium

When more information is necessary, medium-form content gives us the opportunity to communicate with our customers in greater detail. While we may have more room to write here, we still want to focus on keeping our messaging concise, clear and impactful.

WEBSITE COPY

Length: 50-300 words

What: A customer has made it to the website to learn more about the products and services we provide. It is our job to guide them through the website experience in a clear and helpful way.

Example: Examine how Team Communications enable workers to connect instantly, without boundaries and with added intelligence. Read more.

VIDEO

Length: 50-300 words

What: Videos with overlaid text are incredibly popular to share on social media. Even when the topic is business-oriented, compelling visuals with clear, high-level text that explains what’s going on is in demand.

Example: When everything can change in the blink of an eye, we are there to answer the call.

MARKETING COLLATERAL

Length: 100-500 words

What: Brochures, datasheets and other take homes are essential for describing the work we do at trade shows. It’s important to keep this content descriptive without being overwhelming.

Example: Sometimes the best location for better coverage isn’t easy to access. The SLR 1000 makes it simple. Read more.

JOB DESCRIPTION

Length: 250-500 words

What: A job description may be a candidate’s first meeting with our brand, so our goal is to give them a sense of what it’s like to work with us and inspire them to join in our vision.

Example: We are Global Marketing, and our mission is to bring that story to life and to show the world what we can do. From the smallest radio accessory to multimillion dollar infrastructure, we make sure that customers understand how our solutions can help them be the most effective and stay safe.

Long

Long-form content allows us to fully explain our ideas with as much descriptive language as necessary. This is our best opportunity to share our expertise with our customers who are invested in understanding both the big picture and the nuances of our products and services.

WHITE PAPER

Length: 400-1000 words

What: A white paper is an authoritative content piece where the writer takes a deep dive into an overarching topic, using sources, interviews and thought-provoking language to extrapolate on an idea.

Example: With access to the right data sources and expertise, you can use your Land Mobile Radio (LMR) system data to maximize your investment, minimize network downtime and improve system performance like never before. Read more.

EXTERNAL COMMUNICATIONS

Length: 200-500 words

What: External communications are appropriate when we want to speak directly to our customers and clients, fully explaining our perspective or position. This could come in the form of a press release or announcement where information beyond a headline is necessary.

Example: With a software-defined core, enhanced cybersecurity and smart interfaces, DIMETRA X Core is built for long-term performance, giving you the mission-critical communications you need for the next 15 years or more. Read more.

INTERNAL COMMUNICATIONS

Length: 200-500 words

What: Internal-facing communications are intended to relay detailed information to employees within our organization. These provide context, direction and oftentimes action items for employees at all levels.

Example: When Hurricane Irma battered Pinellas County, which includes the cities of Clearwater and St. Petersburg, our radio and technology director knew she could rely on our state-of-the-art ASTRO 25 system to support the 10,000 first responders who subscribe to the network. "LMR is the safest option,” she said. “It’s the best way to protect our first responders."

CASE STUDIES

Length: 200-1000 words

What: This is where we can deep dive into the actual impact our products and services make in people’s lives, outlining the initial problem and how we helped them solve it. This format engages storytelling but is also straightforward, often using data to bolster what we are communicating.

Example: Kissimmee is evolving into a vibrant, fast-growing city, with extensive investments made to bolster the economy, jobs and resident resources. Read more.


BASICS

These are the core tenets of our writing, making it easy for content creators to maintain our brand’s voice and tone throughout all manner of content.

  • Speak in the second person: include the customer in the conversation by using words like “you” and “your”.
     
  • Talk like a person: connect on an intellectual and emotional level.

  • Simplicity sells: cut through the noise and don’t over-complicate.

GRAMMAR AND MECHANICS

Our customers are smart, and they notice the little things when it comes to our communications. Maintaining a high standard for grammar and mechanics ensures that our content is professional and trustworthy.

USE THE ACTIVE VOICE

In a sentence using the active voice, the subject performs an action. With the passive voice, the subject receives an action. The active voice is generally clearer and more direct, which is why it works for us. Using an active voice gives us authority as an industry leader and evokes a sense of expertise and confidence.

Examples

  • Active Voice: We connect people through technology.

  • Passive Voice: People are connected through technology by Motorola Solutions.

AVOID CLICHÉS AND JARGON

Because we value a direct communication style, we want to avoid cliches and jargon. Cliches are overused phrases and expressions, and they are both disengaging and uninspiring to our audience. Jargon is a word or expression used by a very specific audience or group, and can be alienating and confusing to an outsider. By avoiding these two devices, we can write in a more clear, direct and authentic way.

Examples

  • Clichés: “Raise the bar,” “Even the playing field,” “Think outside the box”

  • Jargon: “Synergy,” “Drill down,” and “Slam dunk”

INCLUDE THE CUSTOMER

Speaking in the second person, using “you” and “your”, includes the customer in the conversation. By making our communications all about the customer, we are valuing their perspective while also including them in our world.

Examples

  • Use “you” instead of “we”. Use, “You need reliable voice communications when lives are on the line” instead of, “We know that when lives are on the line, reliable voice communications are a top priority.”


COPY GUIDELINES

Consider our brand as its own publishing house, creating and editing content with consistent language across everything that is produced. Copy guidelines will create clarity around all questions regarding copy.

  • Abbreviations and Acronyms: Use AP style when abbreviating time, dates, months, places, etc.

  • Bulleted Lists: Only use periods when bullets in the list are complete sentences.

  • Emojis: While tempting, they’re not our style so we don’t use them.

  • Numerals: We spell out one through nine (except for measurements) and start using numerals at 10.

  • Percent vs. %: Use “percent” in copy, with figures for the amount and use “%” in sidebars, formulas, graphs, tables and other mathematical or scientific applications.

  • Trademark Symbols: If it is legally required, trademark symbols can appear in the first reference within body copy.

  • Oxford Commas: We are a modern brand that adheres to the AP style guide and therefore do not use Oxford commas.