Finding the brand voice and personality

An iconic footwear brand since 1973, Acorn first rocketed to fame  in 1982 when NASA equipped all its astronauts with Acorn’s flagship product: the Slipper Sock (pictured above). Today Acorn crafts the highest quality footwear with a focus on comfort combined with style,  and has expanded beyond slippers to a wide range of versatile designs.

The Challenge

After more than 40 years in business, Acorn wanted to capture the evolution of the brand, get a clearer picture of its core consumer groups, and define its more contemporary brand voice, personality and communication style. Social media and integration of content across digital channels were also a challenge, as the small team struggled to grow and engage its various communities, and develop content consistent with the brand persona that also resonated with consumers.

Why It Matters

Effective communication starts with knowing who you are and speaking with a consistent voice and message that accurately reflects the brand.  Content should also be well-crafted and tailored for the medium — whether it’s a tweet, an Instagram post, an email newsletter, or an ad on Google.

The Goals:

To better define Acorn’s brand persona and personality, as well as its communication style, tone and voice.

To analyze the performance of existing content on digital channels in general, and to determine what content aligned with the defined brand persona, personality, tone and voice, as well as why and how.

To use that information to develop a content plan and strategy that would guide Acorn in developing content and messaging that could be implemented across digital channels creating a coherent and consistent brand message that truly reflected the company’s long history and ongoing commitment to quality, community and superior customer service.

What We Did:

We worked with the Acorn team to create a brand guide that included a detailed outline of the Acorn persona, personality, and defined the Acorn communication style and voice.

We cross referenced market and consumer data with analysis of Acorn’s existing data from web tracking, social analytics, and analysis of the characteristics and behavior of newsletter subscribers; then used that information to develop targeted consumer profiles and personas that represented Acorn’s real consumers.

We analyzed Acorn’s content and its performance across digital channels including social, web, newsletter, blog and advertising; and worked with Acorn’s marketing team to develop high-performing content that was better targeted and more engaging to the actual consumers.


  • Acorn brand guide defining the brand’s personality, voice and communication style
  • Consumer profiles defining the demographic and psychographic profiles of Acorn’s five core consumer groups
  • Digital Marketing and Content Analysis reports
  • Annual digital marketing and content strategies and plan for social networks and email
  • Set-up and implementation of content management, tracking and reporting tools

Over the years, we helped Acorn collaborate with dozens of likeminded brands, with a focus on both consumer facing and B2B partners

The Results

A clear, consistent and authentic representation of the brand in email and social networks,  growth in both community size and consumer engagement, increased traffic to website from social networks, and increased sales attributable to traffic from social networks.

  • 547% Community Growth (Focus Social Network: Facebook, 2012-2014)
  • 23% to 57% increase in Organic Engagement (year over year, 2012 through 2014)
  • 53% to 150% increase in traffic to site from social networks (year over year, 2011 through 2013)
  • 17% to 37% increase in website sales – Contributed Social Conversions (year over year, 2011 through 2013)