Language Identity: Define Your Firm's Personality

May 5, 2024

Tyler Suomala

Founder of Growthitect

I’m going to test your firm.

More specifically, I’m going to test each person at your firm.

By asking them to write a promotional LinkedIn post for your firm.

If I did this, what would be the results?

Would everyone write something similar that clearly defines the benefits of working for your firm?

Or would each person write something completely different?

If it’s the latter (and I’m guessing it is), then you’re having a language identity crisis. But language identity will be your new best friend after this.

What is language identity?

Language identity includes both what you say and how you say it.

It reflects your firm's communication strategy across various platforms, from your website content to social media posts and direct interactions with clients.

This identity helps convey your firm’s values, expertise, and uniqueness through consistent messaging to your ideal client profile (ICP).

Why is language identity important for architects?

Crafting a well-defined language identity ensures brand recognition and reliability with all your communication. Here’s why it’s essential:

  • Uniform messaging: It standardizes communication, ensuring consistency across different parts of the organization, regardless of the platform or medium.

  • Ease of onboarding: It allows new team members to quickly understand your firm’s communication style, facilitating smoother integration.

  • Benefits-focused: Keeps all communications centered on the advantages clients gain from working with you, rather than just technical specifics.

  • Self-aware: Encourages your firm to continually define and refine its public identity.

How do you implement a strong language identity?

Let’s dive into how you can define a strong language identity for all of your communications.

01 // Define what you say

Start by articulating the core benefits of working with your firm.

These should be clear, compelling, and concise.

Aim to define 4-6 key benefits.

For example:

  • Timely: "We deliver projects on time and within budget, ensuring no surprises."

  • Innovative: "Each design is a testament to cutting-edge innovation tailored to the client's needs."

02 // Define how to say it

Determine the qualities of your language.

How does your firm want to present itself?

What tone should be used to resonate with your audience?

Choose 4-6 qualities that reflect your firm's personality.

For example:

  • Confident: We know our stuff. Our communication is rooted in deep industry knowledge and 50+ years of experience. We speak with authority, showcasing our expertise and the tangible results our customers have achieved.

  • Customer-centric: ABC Architecture Firm is the sidekick and our customers are the heroes. The outcome of their projects wouldn’t be possible without their effort, investment, and trust. And we want to lead with their perspective, not ours.

03 // Include good and bad examples

Everyone interprets directions differently.

And I’ve found that to be especially true in written form.

Include a good and bad messaging example for each quality in step 2 to solidify the language identity for everyone.

For example, here’s a bad and good example for “Confident”:

  • Bad example: "At ABC Architecture Firm, we try our best to meet the needs of our clients.”

  • Good example: "ABC Architecture Firm leverages vast experience and unique talent to exceed your expectations for every project.”

Once you run through this exercise, you’ll have a very simple document (and I do mean very simple - don’t overcomplicate it) that looks something like this:

Share it with your entire team. Better yet - present it with examples so that everyone knows how to communicate on behalf of the firm.

04 // Monitor and refine

Language identity is not static.

It evolves as your firm grows and as market conditions change.

Regularly monitoring and refining based on feedback from your ICP and their preferences ensures that your language remains effective and engaging.


Developing a strong language identity is crucial, shaping how your firm presents itself and interacts with clients, contractors, and the broader community. Here’s how you do it:

  1. Define what you say

  2. Define how you say it

  3. Include good and bad examples

  4. Monitor and refine

And, of course, be sure to share the document with your team and educate them about your language identity.

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