Understanding how to write in SFU’s style is essential to producing assets that uphold the brand.

Our Voice

Tone of voice, brand positioning and key attributes are essential when creating content for our audience. They influence how we want our audiences to perceive SFU and guide you in choosing stories that best represent who we are as a university. 

Our Tone

Our brand voice expresses our unique personality, reflects our values and excites people about what we do, and how we do it. We speak simply, but with sophistication.

Our voice is:

  • Positive 
  • Confident     
  • Conversational
  • Concise 
  • Approachable 
  • Friendly 
  • Compassionate

Example using brand voice:

Why choose SFU for your studies?

Our world-class research facilities, renowned scholars and innovative programs attract keen students from around the globe. Thirty per cent of our students come from other countries.

Our voice is never:  

  • Pessimistic 
  • Pretentious 
  • Corporate 
  • Wordy 
  • Arrogant
  • Cold

Example not using brand voice:  

Why study at SFU?

Simon Fraser University offers an excellent environment for undergraduate and graduate studies. The institution is home to a variety of world-class research facilities, innovative programs, and world-renowned scholars.

Key things to keep in mind when using our brand voice:

  • Write clearly, without jargon
  • Write in the active voice
  • Write in the first person
  • Use a positive tone
  • Use the fewest possible words
  • Replace the verb “to be” (is, are, was, were, has been, have been) with strong verbs
  • Avoid ‘zombie’ nouns (i.e. development, definition, analysis, etc.) and use the more active root verb instead (develop, define, analyze, etc.)