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A compass for communication for Pioneers set out in the right direction

With different product brands under the Henkel Adhesive Technologies business unit, making sure that content looks and feels the same helps us showcase expertise, stage authority, and build trust. 

We want to deliver engaging copy to ensure great user experiences. The communication compass is built to help us identify contexts, make it easy to color language appropriately, and set out in the right direction.

Context is king

Every day, we build knowledge about our customers’ behavior, situation, consumption, needs, challenges, and history. This makes it possible to deliver engaging and customer-centric messaging.

We use our voice differently depending on the purpose of our communication. Selling a new product to a happy customer requires another tone than informing one about a subscription increase. When customer centricity is key, context is king.

We’ve zoomed in on three typical communication contexts or scenarios for which we have developed three different tonalities.

It all starts with the customers and the typical contexts in which we meet them.
It all starts with the customers and the typical contexts in which we meet them.

From objective to result

When the context of the communication is clear, and the objective creates direction, it’s time to focus on the destination and charge copy with the right touch. And when writing is done, don’t forget to check that copy is aligned with our three experience principles

Communication Compass
Depending on the context, we have different objectives, each with a destination — the desired customer sentiment.

Design headlines correctly for max impact 

To visualize our messaging, we provide a range of different typographical variants of the Henkel GT Flexa typeface. Matching the content and context of the communication, the font can be either expressive or reduced. See examples and get more information about the scale from reduced to expressive in our instruction on typography. 

For further information on Henkel's typeface, please see typography.


Imagine you’re a product or industry expert who knows what customers need before they know it themselves and you use that insight to build trust. You can turn unstoppable curiosity into valuable expertise by charging your language with real dedication, humble pride, and a human touch.


1. How to charge language with real dedication:

  • Instead of:
    “Leading today’s and shaping tomorrow’s markets with transformative solutions”
  • Go for:
    “Be the pioneer in your market with tailor-made solutions” or “Solutions that help you lead the way”

One way of exciting readers is to make your copy as short and concise as possible. Try to avoid clichés and lengthy explanations – and aim to connect with readers with messaging that stands out. By using either “pioneer” or “lead the way” you make a strong but subtle connection to Henkel Adhesive Technologies and our unique position. Go for language that expresses true professionalism.


2. How to charge language with humble pride:

  • Instead of:
    “No matter the challenge, we’re your partner in finding a better way”
  • Go for:
    "We’re here to help you create smarter solutions” or “Together we can create a better way”

Finding the right balance between market leader communication and humble messaging requires attention to detail. Never hide the pride that comes with writing on behalf of a renowned front-runner such as Henkel Adhesive Technologies but do try to turn that pride into something your reader can relate to and use. “Help” and “together” are great ways of communicating that we’re here for the sake of our customers. Go for language that builds trust and increases readability.


3. How to charge language with a human touch:

  • Instead of:
    “Henkel Adhesives Products – Solutions, Technologies, and Processes.”
  • Go for:
    “A natural ingredient in business transformation” or “Making business transformation stick”

Building and maintaining a great relationship with your audience, you should always aim to address them at the right level. All readers are human, so opting for copy that decomplicates your points and turns professionally complex messages into immediately understandable prose is often the right move. Go for language that makes your readers smarter straight away. 


Imagine you’re a keynote speaker who is familiar with both the science and commercial aspect of adhesives – and eager to share your knowledge. You can forge strong bonds through open partnerships by charging your language with insightful knowledge, trusted leadership, and honest innovation.


1. How to charge language with insightful knowledge:

  • Instead of:
    “Ascent: Scaling Up Sustainable Luxury Living”
  • Go for:
    “Keeping the world’s tallest wood structure together” or “Supporting your sustainable construction”

By using language that supports our ambition of forging strong bonds through open partnerships, you have the opportunity to prove why and how Henkel Adhesive Technologies makes a difference in the lives of thousands. Use your words to create stories you’d want to read yourself and headlines that instantly convey the power of our knowledge and expertise. Go for copy and messaging that make information exciting and engaging.


2. How to charge language with trusted leadership:

  • Instead of:
    “Working alongside innovators to solve complex challenges in every industry”
  • Go for:
    “Reducing 25.000 parts to 49” or “Innovation drives our engineering, engineering drives your innovation”

You should aim to craft copy that makes it easy for readers to want to connect with us. Your objective
is to write so invitingly that your audience will feel welcome in our company. That’s why going with
”let’s”,“together” or “teaming up” work well as alternatives in the above example. Go for messaging
that builds trust, speaks directly to the readers, and creates a desire to get closer.


3. How to charge language with honest innovation:

  • Instead of:
    “Threadlockers Drive Specialty Vehicle Innovation”
  • Go for:
    “Reducing 25.000 parts to 49 with Henkel Adhesive Technologies” or “Innovation drives engineering, engineering drives innovation”

A great way of communicating our shared passion for innovation is to try to describe why or how it comes to life. Like in the example above, where the copy accurately describes a great leap forward when it comes to reducing automotive parts. When communicating the magic of our products and technology, go for language that showcases our innovative spirit and engineering mindset.


Imagine you’re a customer service agent who loves to explain why things are changing, how it’s going to affect the readers, and what they should do about it. You can make everything easier by charging your language with factual transparency, accurate guidance, and understandable instruction.


1. How to charge language with factual transparency:

  • Instead of:
    “We will respond to your email shortly. All fields are required unless indicated optional.”
  • Go for:
    “Please fill in the required fields so we can help you right away.”

The goal of writing copy that explains what you want your audience to do is to make readers feel so well-informed and enlightened that they not only know what to do, but also have no problem in keeping track. Go for 100 % transparency and active voice copy in order to make your writing as clear and unmistakable as possible.  


2. How to charge language with accurate guidance:

  • Instead of:
    “Find out different ways to purchase Henkel Adhesive industrial products and services.”
  • Go for:
    “We know you’re busy, so purchasing our products and services is easy.”

The goal of your copy is both to get readers to perform an action – and to convince them that it will not take up too much of their time. Go for language that decomplicates whatever you want them to do, approaches your audience in a matter-of-fact fashion, and supports the belief that Henkel Adhesive Technologies is always the right choice.


3. How to charge language with understandable instruction:

  • Instead of:
    “No matter where you are located, Henkel Experts are there to answer your questions.”
  • Go for:
    “Our experts are always ready to answer your questions. Whenever. Wherever.”

Updating readers about change is often a matter of successfully delivering concise information. If you can do this while still delivering your messages in a personal way, you increase the success rate of your writing. “Our experts” is more friendly and inclusive than “Henkel”, and “ready” suggests a desired level of availability. Go for communication that turns a “how do I do that?” situation into an “oh that’s great!” situation.

Tips for production

  1. Short paragraphs
    Keep paragraphs to a maximum of five or six lines where possible to not overwhelm the user.
  2. Break things up
    Use bullet points where appropriate to ensure the eye is drawn to important content on the page.
  3. Less is more
    Utilize short sentences to make content easy and exciting to read.
  4. Be personal
    Always use “we” and “us” to ensure the content is coming from a human being, not a big corporation.  
  5. Use an active voice
    Go with “customers love glue” rather than “glue is loved by customers”. Also: Use call-to-action language like “find out more” and “discover” to push the readers further in their journey. Avoid unnecessary conditional phrases, dependent clauses, and unclear negations.
  6. Easy does it  
    If there is an easier way to transfer your message without losing the level of information you want to pass, opt for the easier way.
  7. Cut the fluff
    Try to be as direct as possible. Avoid abstract jargon or fluffy sales stereotypes by communicating precisely. truthfully, and directly.
  8. Middle of the road
    Do not overcomplicate nor oversimplify. Our aim is to be easy to work with, so our content should be easy to digest as well. On the other hand, bear in mind that we don’t want to avoid complex topics and erase the nuances of hard science.
  9. Be scannable  
    Not every user will scroll to the bottom of the page, and while several will use the quick links to navigate to the place that provides them with the information they need, not everyone will.

Writing in a social media context

Regardless of channel, you should not deviate from our tone of voice and experience principles – but try to adapt the level of formality to the dialogue you’re taking part in.

Explore our general social media guidelines