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EPISODE 43: Copywriting Characters: Deconstructing the Architect Voice

by Jul 20, 2021Podcast

In this episode we will cover:

  • What content personality is
  • Why we created the Copywriting Character Quiz
  • How to recognize an Architect voice
  • The strengths of an Architect voice
  • The challenges of an Architect voice
  • How to write content in an Architect voice

At North Star, we believe in the power of personality-driven content. That’s why we created the Copywriting Character Quiz, to help brands identify and tap into the core traits of their unique voice. In this series of Brand Your Voice Podcast episodes, we’re introducing you to each of the 5 Copywriting Character Archetypes. 

Today, we’re talking about the Architect voice! 

Architect brands excel at strategic planning. They’re not just looking at the big picture—they’re taking steps every day to get there. Architects are logical, methodical, organized leaders. They love data and research, and they’re the best at setting goals and following through with them. Architects help bridge the gap from where their audience is to where they want to be with easy-to-learn frameworks and step-by-step processes. They truly believe results can be achieved through a little trial and error, commitment, honesty, and hard work.

 

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How content personality fits into brand voice
  • How to recognize an Architect voice
  • The strengths of an Architect voice
  • The challenges of an Architect voice
  • How to write content in an Architect voice

 

Understanding your brand voice will help you connect to your audience, and knowing your content personality is a huge part of understanding your voice!

Are you an Architect? Take our Copywriting Character Quiz to find out!

 

Learn More:

Brand Your Voice podcast episode 9: What Is Your Content Personality?

Run Like Clockwork

 

TRANSCRIPT

Jessi:
Welcome to the Brand Your Voice Podcast, where we’re digging into how you can create personality-driven content that connects and converts. I’m Jessi…

Marie:
…and I’m Marie. We’re the co-founders of North Star Messaging + Strategy, where we support business owners in outsourcing content without sacrificing authenticity.

Jessi:
Every brand has a unique voice that sets it apart. We're digging into how to capture the way your brand communicates from the words you use to the stories you tell. So you can create more compelling content that strategically helps you meet your business goals.

Marie:
And if you choose to outsource that content, you'll be able to do so with confidence, knowing your brand voice is in good hands and you can reclaim your time. We're so glad you're here and hope you enjoy this episode.

Jessi:
Welcome to the final episode in our series, where we go into the individual copyrighting characters or also known as content personalities. These are the five copyrighting characters: the rebel, the artist, the nurturer, the scholar, and the architect. And you can find your copyrighting character by going to take our short quiz at northstarmessaging.com/character. So far, we have talked about the first four characters, rebel, artist, nurture, scholar. Today we're talking about the very last character last but not least the architect, which is my secondary character. So the previous episode, Marie and I talked about how we both test primarily as the scholar and your primary copywriting character is your quiz result, but everyone also has a secondary character and you kind of pick this one more based off intuition and what you naturally lean into. You can take the quiz again and choose different answers if you want to get something that's a little bit more data-driven. But for me, I've always found that I kind of get an intuitive hit on like, okay, that's that person's secondary character. And for me, my secondary is absolutely the architect. And I'm pretty sure that's that Marie would agree with that.

Marie:
Yes, I do. Jessi, I think you're spot on one of the things that we've always kind of talked about, like Jessi and I obviously have a lot in common. How we run our business, you know, is very much aligned in terms of our values and our professional strengths. And also there are places where we diverge from each other. And one of the places where Jessi has a strength that I don't really have so much is we call it the crack filling, right. Where there are chinks in the wall, right? And there's a hole in, there is a place where something's leaking through, right? You can think of it like a dam. And, um, Jesse is very good at not only spotting those, but figuring out what to go in place.
And the reason she's so good at that is because she's very systems minded. She's very good at coming up with the process. Oh, here's a hole in the process. Okay. Here's what we need to do to fix that. It's just very logical. I'm very goal focused and very much able to see the whole picture as well as the details. And this is very much a characteristic of the architect. And the reason we had a separate architect from scholar is because the scholars really more focused on teaching it, whereas the scholar is, sorry the architect is more focused on sort of codifying it so that then the architect can create a framework or create a process that again, makes it easy for people to learn. Like they both are interested in learn and having people learn it, but the, the, the architect is much more interested in the process. And maybe even creating their own process and framework, this comes very naturally to them. And you can be sure that if somebody who's an architect has set something up that it's going to be flawless.

Jessi:
Well, I don't know about flawless, but you know, I think there's a, there's a tendency to try and get as close to flawless as possible. I think another way to think about the architect is the builder or even an engineer, you know, and I think of engineers... my dad was an engineer is an engineer. And, um, he had to make sure that things were working at every phase because if something broke, then the whole system broke. And so he had to make sure that he was paying attention to the big picture goal, but also each individual piece. And that's very much the way in which the architect moves through the world and also how they craft content. They, as far as values are concerned, they really value leadership. And they see leadership as that responsibility to make sure that everyone has what they need to succeed.
It's not sort of like that micromanaged to leadership that isn't even leadership. It's just telling people what to do. It's more of taking on the responsibility of just making sure that those cracks are filled and making sure that if a crack is spotted, the right person has what they need in order to fill it. Not necessarily they're the ones filling every single crack, although that is a tendency that sometimes has to be resisted, but there's this sense of, we need to make everything the best it possibly can be. And that comes with a value to have honesty. Especially honesty when things aren't working and making sure that like, you know, it's not a like bullying, you know, I'm gonna be like, just telling you everything wrong. It's more of a, this is in the best interest of lifting everyone up and everything up because strategically, if we're looking at our end goal, these things that we're doing here are not necessarily working. So let's dig into them, figure out where it's falling apart so that we can create a plan to fix it.
This leads to a lot of content that is focused around strategy, around planning around big picture ideas, but taking those big picture ideas and figuring out how to execute on them, they can have these big visions, but their focus is really more on how do you make that vision happen then just ideating around the vision.

Marie:
Yeah, absolutely. So some things that come really naturally to the archetype, the architect, archetype, confidence, right? These are very data-driven people typically. And so they know that like, Hey, if I'm putting this framework out there, it has been tested. It's been proven, it's been tweaked and it's ready for big time. Right. They have courage, right? This is somebody who really is not afraid to tackle the big problems, afraid to take a big question, a big problem, a big challenge and break it down. And they're also not afraid to put their idea out there because they know that it can support other people. They're very analytical. These are people who are going to be looking at formulas processes, frameworks, and really trying to figure out, does this work, where's the problem with this? How can I improve this right they're again, like I said, they're not afraid of the data. Right.
And also what Jessi was saying, the very big picture, right? So they have a goal at the end of the day, they have set the goal. That is what everything is in service of. And they obviously want to do so in a way that stays focused on the results. But it's also honest, right. And is, is very human. These are not just people like human calculators. These are people who are trying to create something that is very translatable for everybody else. These are the people who, you know, I'm so grateful for because they take ideas that are so complicated and break them down into something that is much more accessible for everybody else.
So one of their strengths really is creating strategies and frameworks. This is the person who whenever, you know, you talk with them, they might have a whiteboard nearby and a marker in their hand. Cause we're trying to draw out like a framework or process or a Venn diagram or like a graph or something. Right. Like they're very much like, not that they're always visual like that, but that's an example of something that an architect might do. Because they're very logical, they're very organized and they use that super power to help other people come to deeper understanding.

Jessi:
Yeah. You know, I'm thinking about like, I think this is where my architect and scholar overlap very nicely. And so any other scholar architects out there, this is maybe a way that you can leverage that. Whenever I need to break something really big and complex down, especially for other people, not just for myself, but I want to convey it to other people. I'm immediately like, okay, what acronym can I create? How can I create a foldable? Like, like if I'm physically in a space with people, like how can we get out our construction paper and our scissors and our glue to make like something that is actually representative of what we're trying to do in each individual part of it, rather than keeping it as this big abstract thing we want to achieve. And that I think is, some of that is the scholar, because there's this teaching aspect of like, I want to make sure that I'm conveying it in a way that is really broken down and understandable, but the desire to make sure that it's strategically organized and that it really accomplishes that end goal, that is very much the architect.
And so when we're thinking about like walking into a room and being like that person is an architect, one of the things that really shows up is that end result, focus. This is someone who begins at the end and works backwards, which is a skill that's taught to a lot of people, but the architects going to already be doing it naturally, they're already going to be saying, okay, I want to write a novel. How do I break that down into actionable steps? Or I want to release a new program. How do I take that big launch goal that I have, and start at the beginning and create benchmarks along the way and make sure that each step along the way makes sense. The big vision doesn't scare them because they are confident in their ability to break it down into these bite doable pieces.
And so even though they start with this end goal that might like initially be like, wow, that's, that's kind of scary. That's, that's a big thing. Once they sit down and say, okay, yeah, but right now I'm just getting from point a to point B, but I know what my point Z is. It allows you to really feel like you can take it one step at a time and it makes it feel more achievable, especially if you are an architect, creating content for other people or communicating with other people, because people are afraid of their visions. A lot of the time they're, they're afraid of these big things that they want and they don't feel like they know how to get there. And the architect is really adept at helping to show them that pathway.

Marie:
Yeah, for sure. And I, I'm glad you brought up fear because this is something when it comes to data and information and research, fear does not come up very often for the architect. So for instance, let's say the architect, maybe just in their, in their business has decided to, you know, take on a loan, something like that. Right. And, you know, whereas somebody else might say, like, I don't even wanna look at the bank statement. Like, I don't even want to think about how much I'm going to owe here. Whenever this comes to the architect is like, okay, where's my Excel sheet. I know. I want to know exactly how much I'm going to owe exactly when, how do I pay that off? What is my plan? You know, they're going to be breaking it down in a way that feels manageable for them.
Now, there probably are architects who are not awesome at money management. So this is completely a generalization, but they're, but they feel empowered by having the data, right. The architect wants to have the data. So they use that data to use experiential data like qualitative data, like people's commentary or feedback to know what's working, what isn't working. They don't want to waste their time on something. That's not going to produce real results. And they know that the only way to do that is to face the music and get the data. So they crave it actually.

Jessi:
Yeah. Marie can attest to the fact that the number of spreadsheets I've created in the duration of the business, like poor, poor Marie will like hop on to her computer for work for the day. And it'll be like, Hey, guess what? I have a new link.

Marie:
Oh, let me guess. It's a Google sheet. Shocked, shocked, I say.

Jessi:
You know, and that's not to say that every architect loves Google sheets. I think every architect has their own way of conveying this data and categorizing this data and storing this data. But there's that tendency to really want that, that information at your fingertips and to understand it, and to be able to sift through it in a way that allows it to not feel scary. It takes the fear out of it to just kind of see the numbers or the, whatever the data is. It may not be numbers of it's qualitative data, but to see what it is in black and white and be like, this is what it is now. I can actually like make a plan around it. And so if you are getting advice from an architect and it's in their area of specific expertise, it's probably really well thought out advice that they are coming to, having gone through this process of breaking down their own experiences, as well as the data that they've collected from other people's experiences. And so you can probably rely on that advice.

Marie:
Yeah. And even if it's something where they don't have data personally, they're probably extrapolating very intelligently. This is just something that the architect does naturally. So if you have tested as the architect or you are a writer who is, A, tested as the architect for yourself, or for a client that you have, how do you lean into creating content for an architect? So, as we talked about, they're very goal focused. So the content needs to reflect that be results oriented in the language, communicate the goal early and often, this is the finish line. This is a finish line. This is the thing we're pointing towards, right? Like this is something where it can feel a little bit like, you know, you've got a skipping record where you're just constantly like, and remember the end goal is this, remember the end goal is this.
But at the end of the day, not everybody else is great at remembering that. And so sometimes they're following you along the path, and then they're like, where are we going again? Can we just like picnic here for like a couple of years? And you're like, yeah, but like the summit is like, you know, a mile up, we can do it, let's do it. And you know, like you're just reminding them, like, here's the goal, here's the goal. I think a really good example of this is run like clockwork consultancy, which is run by a known architect, Adrienne Dorison, right. She's always talking about the four week vacation, four week vacation, four week vacation, four week vacation. That's the goal. This is the thing we're looking at. And so as you're getting, you know, watching the modules and you're learning about all the different ways that you can set up your standard operating procedures and like all the little like meandering rabbit holes that you can go down, it's always like, so that you can take your four week vacation that comes up over and over again. And that's because that messaging is led by an architect.

Jessi:
Absolutely. Yeah. And I think that the architect is also really in sharing that end goal and then making sure to reiterate this, that end goal, they're also going to share a lot of stories that highlight that end goal having been achieved or the benchmarks along the way, and those having been achieved. So this could be storytelling and case studies. It could be your own personal examples, or it could be just hard data. Like here are the numbers, and this is kind of getting ahead of ourselves a little and talking about, you know, areas to potentially improve or watch out for.
If you are an architect or writing in the architect voice, make sure you mix it up a little. Architects tend to find one piece of data that they gravitate towards naturally and really like to use and lean into. There are other ways to convey data. And so just making sure that when you are sharing stories and case studies and results, you're doing so in a multitude of ways, because that's going to just further emphasize your point.

Marie:
Yeah, for sure. And speaking of emphasizing your points, one of the things that the architect typically avoids, is sort of flowery descriptions or these overlong meandering sentences that kind of, you know, wander around the fields and Creek and lose the point because the architect is all about the point. They are, their sentence structure tends to be pretty short, succinct, easy to follow. It's not that they don't have complex thought they do. They're just trying to make sure that that complexity is accessible. And so one of the ways they do that is by having very accessible language. They're also very into like sound bites, not just statistics or facts. They have word choice that is extremely specific and clear. One of the things that we like to teach our clients is, you know, clarity over cleverness clarity over cleverness. This is something that some archetypes struggle with a little bit, right.
Sometimes like the artist, for example, they can be, they can fall so in love with the way that they have come up with a cute way of describing something that they don't realize that like, it doesn't actually make sense to somebody unless they have the context. Architect is like other side of the coin. They're the person who is like, I need to make sure this is clear and it may be boring, but it's going to be clear. My gosh.
And also, you know, we've talked about this, how they like to break down the complex ideas into logical step-by-step content. But the other thing that we didn't mention before is they often will gravitate towards doing that by first naming the step and then describing it. So if you ever see them have a, like an acronym, right. They're going to say, okay, well a is for attract whatever, like, okay, ACDC, right. I'm going back to the run like clockwork thing 80 is for attract. Right. See it is for convert and okay, now we're going to define what convert means. Right. So, this is something that's very natural for the architect is to make sure that, okay, I've laid the foundation, everybody's standing on the foundation. We all have this sort of the same definitions for all the things. We have that same understanding. We're all on the same page. Now we can move forward to the next step.

Jessi:
Absolutely. So, going into the activity we've done with all the characters so far and applying it to the architect, we're going to give you a basic sentence that has not been voiceified at all. Really. It's just, it is what it is. And then we're going to give you the architect version of that sentence. And so the basic sentence that we've used in all of the episodes so far is, "We show our clients how to brand their voice within their content."
And if you want to go back and listen to previous episodes, you can listen to how we rewrote that sentence for the other archetypes. Again, that sentence is, "We show our clients how to brand their voice within their content."
The architect, diversion of that sentence, "We provide our clients with simple strategies to capture their voice and create content that helps them meet their goals."
So a few things happen in there that I think are really important and characteristic of the architect, they are the sentences making sure qualify that it's not just strategies, it's simple strategies. And the architect really wants to make sure that the person on the other end, the person reading it is not going to feel overwhelmed by the promise. And the promise is to capture their voice, but that can feel big and abstract. And so by promising simple strategies, you're extending that olive branch of we're going to do this thing, and it's not going to be as complicated as you think it is. And it's also focusing on what the end goal is, which is in this case to meet their goals and an architect who is writing this for a specific purpose may even get more specific to that depending on the goal that their specific audience has. Because again, they're looking at the end and figuring out how we can get the audience or the reader to the end goal.

Marie:
Yeah, for sure. So, you know, a few other words that might be used in the architect's vocabulary would be words like plan, optimize, measure, solution, structure, system, data, right? Execute, goal. If you, by the way, test as the architect, within the copywriting character quiz, which again is at northstarmessaging.com/character, it's a free quiz you can take on and get your result pretty much instantly. You will get a PDF that gets you a little bit started on that word bank. So you can go ahead and get some inspiration there. So now that we've talked about that a little bit, I want to talk about potential pitfalls that the architect may run into. This is just, again, every architect's different. And so some of this may apply, some of this may not apply, but these are just things to watch out for within your content.
Many architects are very adept at figuring out exactly where is the sweet spot in terms of how complicated or not complicated their frameworks and processes are that they're teaching to other people and explaining to other people. But sometimes you have to do a little experimentation, a little bit of data to find that sweet spot. So, I would say architects know that your first instinct, you, you know, you're going to have to roll with it because there's not going to be anything else laid out before, but then you can lean into your natural strength of collecting data to see, have you hit the sweet spot? Do people need a little bit more guidance? Do people need a little bit less? Am I going over a board? Do I need a little bit more information? So lean into that second part because when you put it out there initially that's only the first step.

Jessi:
Absolutely. The other, the next one is the human element. So this, this is an interesting one because I think that this is particularly true of the architect scholar, which is, or the scholar architect, which is what I am. And if you are an architect who has a little bit of rebel in you, this might show up as well. Definitely. Yeah. It definitely shows up if you kind of straddle the line between architect and scholar, which is incorporating the human element in the form of some sort of emotional response. And so this applies to both, if you're creating content that is not in a dialogue format, so I'm writing a new blog post and putting it out to the world. And if you are creating content that is directly responsive to other content. So responding an email, commenting on a social media posts, things like that. There's this tendency for the architects to immediately want to go into solution mode and immediately say, okay, that's your problem. I have all the fixes and let's go into it. And here's what you do. And you know, 1, 2, 3, this is going to solve all your problems.

Marie:
By the way, don't do this in your relationships either.

Jessi:
People don't want that. They really don't. And it's hard because you just want to give them the answer, but they don't want the answer they want to be seen and heard. They want to be acknowledged. They want their fears to be acknowledged and validated. I'm actually really glad you brought up the relationship point, Marie, because this is something that for me being an architect, and we've mentioned this off the air talking about like Enneagram types and NBTI and all of this, like I'm just logical side of everything. Like the most logical everything that you can be. And so in content in the business, this is something that I really have to watch out for is making sure that I take some time to just say, like, stop, think, hear them and respond to how they're feeling before I offer a solution.
And it's also something I've had to work on in my personal life and my relationships, my friendships, my relationship with my significant other. And because I do, I go into fix it mode and it comes from a place of love and it comes from a place of empathy and wanting to help. And again, it's not always what they need. So make sure you're tuned into what your audience actually needs in order to give them yes. The solution, but the solution when they're ready for it.

Marie:
Yeah. Yeah. I'm glad you finished it that way, because I think often they do want that, but after they've been heard and acknowledged, right, they need to have that connection point and then they're like, okay, now I'm ready to take your recommendation. I just needed, you hear me about the state of the, whatever, you know? Yeah. So, another thing to just remind the architect, they're so good at bringing in facts, data case studies, right? All of that good stuff. And please don't forget the power of storytelling, the power of testimonials, that bit have softer information that can come in to support what you're creating. That sort of qualitative side of things. Right? here's another one that I think maybe all of the archetypes run into this, but I think the architect maybe most plagued by it, which is perfectionism.
This can show up in your frameworks, in your communication everywhere. Right? This is the architect sometimes wants to take a magnifying glass and take a look at every aspect of everything. And it becomes, becomes, it can get to a point where you're frozen in place and you don't actually take action because you want everything to be perfect first. And just know, you know, the imperfect action is great because it allows you to collect data. I keep talking about Run Like Clockwork, but because again, it's run by, it's run by an architect. It feels like it's, it's relatable here. But one of the things, one of the big lessons I've learned from working with them is welcome it when something breaks in your business, because that shows you where there's a hole to fill a crack to fill. Right. And so it's the same with, you know, your perfectionism, if this is something that's coming up for you as an architect to know that like it is okay, when something gets a little sloppy, because it allows you to see here's an opportunity for improvement and also the world didn't explode. Congrats.

Jessi:
Yeah, absolutely. And then last thing on this list, this is a, we mentioned this during the scholar episode and I kind of wish we had mentioned it in all of the episodes, because I think this is important for all of the archetypes, which is not to forget about accessibility. The architect in particular is very drawn to a- they're drawn to showing the thing that they're trying to convey. Often this can be with diagrams or a foldable, like I mentioned earlier, or an acronym or something like that, take the time to make sure that whatever it is you're creating to convey your awesome framework that's broken down this big complex idea. Everyone can get the benefit from that who wants to, you know, there is accessibility for different learning preferences for different needs. You know, we talked about the last episode, how we take these podcasts and we make sure that there's a transcript available so that, you know, more people can get the information that they need, whether they can't listen to the episode or just don't want to, or in a situation that prevents it.
We want to make sure that when we're leaning into our voice, whatever voice may be, we are doing so in a way that does not sacrifice accessibility. And so we want to make sure that we're thinking about that. Architects, I imagine that you are probably already thinking of like a million ways you can do this because that's how the architect's brain works. Follow through on that, because that's really important piece to make sure that as part of all of your content.
With that, we're going to go to your last copywriting character related homework assignment.

Marie:
Yes. So the first thing to do, if you have not already is head to northstarmessaging.com/character, to take the copyrighting character quiz and see what your result is. And if you want to, you can even take it again and lean into sort of what feels like maybe a secondary part of your personality, because you'll get a primary copywriting character and a secondary one, or you can kind of lean into your intuition and choose from there. But then the next thing we want you to do is take a piece of content. It doesn't have to be long. Just a few sentences is fine. If you have already been listening to these episodes, and you've been doing this exercise with one piece of content continue using that piece of content. But what we want you to do is take something that feels a bit neutral and write it into how you feel the architect might actually write that.
So rewrite something that's already been written. It doesn't have to be by you. It can be by you. It can be by somebody else doesn't matter, you know, dealer's choice, that's you. But do you just rewrite it into something else. One of the things that the architect has as a strength is creativity. So lean into that creativity. Think about how you can re envision something in a way that breaks that idea down really allows those breadcrumbs to be easily accessible for people to really learn a new concept relationship form, informed their way of thinking about something in a way that makes it just fall into place like Legos, right? That is the architect's gift. And I can't wait for you to go into this process and see how it is for you, to see what's a strength for you to see what's difficult for you.
Tthis will help you determine what your natural strengths are, so that you know what to play up in your content. And then also where potential pitfalls are. And if you are a writer who has clients, you're going to have clients all over the map in terms of these five different archetypes and combinations of these archetypes. And so when you know your own personal strengths, then you'll know who's a really excellent client for you and who might just require a little bit more, you know, sort of chameleon thing to get it right?

Jessi:
Yeah, absolutely. If you've listened to this series so far and you've kinda hit on all five and you haven't done the homework yet for any of the episodes, I want to encourage you to really take this time to take that neutral piece of content that you choose and practice with each of the characters, go back and relisten to the episodes, or take a look at the transcripts and see if you can take that neutral piece of content and come up with five versions of it that all have the same core, but in slightly different ways. And you can even think of some of your clients, if you're a writer or a content creator and how you might take that neutral piece of content and write it to fit that particular client, this is a great tool and a great resource to start nailing their voice, start honing in on who they are right off the bat. And again, when you take the quiz, at northstarmessaging.com/character, that's a tool not just for you, but also for your clients. So if you are a content creator, you can also share that link with them and ask them to share their results with you. And you can go ahead and get a headstart on really making sure that you can nail their voice.

Marie:
Exactly. So happy voice creating and architecting.
Thanks for us for this episode of the Brand Your Voice Podcast. Make sure to visit our website, northstarmessaging.com, where you can subscribe to the show on iTunes, Spotify, and more.

Jessi:
If you found value in this episode, we'd love for you to leave us a review on iTunes and share it with your friends. Thank you, and happy content creating.

For additional content strategy and branding tips, check out northstarmessaging.com/blog. Also, please tag us on Instagram and let us know you’re out there! @northstarmessaging 


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