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Writing

At Tatem, writing is an extension of our vision to create a seamless, enjoyable, and memorable user experience. These are the guidelines we’ve put together for copywriting at Tatem.

Voice and Tone Overview

The Tatem voice is an important part of our brand, and one that helps convey both personality and intent.

We utilize two different tones across our marketing materials and product. The reason for this is context. In our marketing content, our goal is to create engaging copy and content for those visiting Tatem’s public website or viewing our marketing materials across the internet, on social media, or in real life. Within our product, our goal is to purely inform, guide, and relay information clearly and concisely.

Our writing is an extension of who we are as a company, so regardless of whether it’s found in our marketing materials or our product, it’s human.

Marketing Materials Voice and Tone

The voice and tone used within our marketing materials includes wit, puns, and on occasion, satire. However, we still always maintain a clear, concise, authoritative tone. Our goal for this style is to acquire new users, and is similar to writing you’d find on an advertisement or headline.

Examples:
  • “Take the shortcut. We did. Use site-wide keyboard shortcuts to accomplish virtually any task in Tatem. Build teams. Manage projects. Create tasks. RIP, mouse.”
  • “Your best time yet. Lightning fast transitions for those who want to get more done, faster. Like <100ms per transaction faster. Get work done in the blink of an eye. Literally.”

Product Voice and Tone

The voice and tone used within our products is clear, concise, direct, and informative. The goal is to be direct and make the user experience as seamless as possible.

Examples:
  • "No referrals have been made yet. Share your link or invite friends via email to give (and earn) free Tatem credit.”
  • "Are you sure you want to permanently delete the "Task Name” task? You cannot undo this action.”

Copywriting Principles

These principles help us uphold Tatem’s voice and tone, and align our copy across various channels. This ultimately leads to better, more cohesive experiences for people who interact with our brand. Our copy principles are as follows:
  • Be clear, leaving no doubt in the reader’s mind about what’s been said
  • Be authoritative, offering guidance and knowledge, where needed
  • Be human and approachable
  • Be professional and respectful of all readers
  • Be fun, where appropriate*
* We suggest reserving “fun” copy for public-facing marketing materials, social media posts, advertisements, newsletters, etc.

Copywriting Principles

It should go without saying, but it’s worth stating that offensive, demeaning, rude, unprofessional, or inappropriate language is never acceptable. This includes political comments, slang, profanity, name-calling, or anything else that would be unacceptable to send in a company-wide email.

Emojis

Emojis should be used sparingly, if at all, and only in the right context. They could be thoughtfully included in customer emails, product emails, newsletters, social media announcements, or other customer communication in which something exciting is being shared or announced. They could even be considered for rare use in a product release or blog post. However, we never use an emoji in place of a word or phrase in a sentence.

The Tatem Name

Since the Tatem brand name is trademarked, we don’t use Tatem as a verb, or create words that include our brand name.

Stylization

We most closely (but do not directly) follow the Associated Press Stylebook, and use the Oxford Comma. For spelling, use the first entry for a word in the Merriam-Webster online dictionary unless otherwise noted.

Capitalization

Title Case is the default capitalization style for all titles, headers, and proper nouns, including the Tatem name itself (even if our logo suggests otherwise). In this style, all major words are capitalized while unimportant words (articles, for instance) are not.
Example: Don’t Forget to Turn Off the Lights

Sentence case is used for all running text (sentences, paragraphs). We prefer to hyperlink our website, but in special situations where we write out tatem.com, it should always be lowercase. The only scenario in which it would be appropriate to capitalize tatem.com would be at the start of a sentence, which we avoid.
Example: Don’t forget to turn off the lights.

Dates and Times

Guidelines for how we present dates and times:
  • Always capitalize “AM” and “PM,” as in: 9:30 AM
  • Do not use :00 for times at the top of the hour: 9 AM | 11 PM
  • For time spans, use an en dash: 9:30 AM - 2 PM PDT
  • For default display, follow numbers with a space: 7 AM, 10:30 PM
  • In text, use the same format: Taking place on October 7 from 8:30 AM to 1 PM EDT

Job Titles

Guidelines for how we present job titles:
  • Always capitalize job titles
  • Abbreviate CEO, CFO, COO, CTO, VP, Sr.
  • Don’t abbreviate uncommon job titles, like Chief Technical Operations Officer
  • Use Co-Founder (e.g. “Apple Co-Founder, Steve Wozniak”)

Punctuation

In running text, we use standard punctuation (though we avoid using exclamation points). Phrase-length headers, sub-headers, buttons, and links should not have any punctuation. Headers and sub-headers that form full sentences should use punctuation. Unconventional punctuation (e.g. periods at the end of a phrase, “Meet Tatem.”) are sometimes acceptable within marketing materials. We never use punctuation within buttons or links.

Symbols

As a general rule, we do not use ampersands (&) or plus signs (+) in place of "and.” Rare exceptions exist for copy within headers or footers. We use the Oxford Comma within all running text, and with discretion in sentence-length headers and sub-headers. However, we suggest avoiding sentence-length headers requiring the Oxford comma. We always set end punctuation inside closing quotation marks (e.g. “It just works.”)

Em Dashes (—)

When using em dashes, we insert space around them to denote emphasis or drama. In most cases, em dashes can — and should — be replaced by commas. We sparingly use em dashes.

En Dashes (-)

We avoid using en dashes in nearly all writing. We use them sparingly, if at all. There is nearly always a better way to express a thought or statement without an en dash.

Hyphens

Guidelines for how we present job titles:
  • For compound nouns that may not be read as one though (e.g. merry-go-round)
  • For some prefixes and suffixes (e.g. ex-girlfriend)
  • To avoid confusion between cognates (e.g. He wants to re-create the mural at the recreation center)
  • To avoid having two vowels in a row (e.g. anti-ice windshield)
  • For dates (e.g. January 22 - 25)

Typography

At Tatem, we exclusively use the Synthese family of fonts within our product and marketing materials.

Glossary

Throughout our marketing materials and our product, we refer to a variety of terms. Guidelines for how we present these terms are as follows:
  • Users: used within marketing materials to describe individuals using Tatem, regardless of whether or not they are paying for the product. “User(s)” is not to be used anywhere in our product; it is a term reserved solely for marketing materials (e.g. Homepage, Releases, or Beliefs).
  • Members: used throughout our product to describe Tatem workspace members. For the sake of consistency, we will not use any term interchangeably with this on our platform. Note that we do not use “member(s)” in any of our marketing copy; it is a term reserved solely for our product copy.
  • Guests: refers to those invited to a specific Tatem workspace as a non-workspace member. For instance, a “guest” could be a contractor, agency, client, or advisor invited to a company’s workspace with guest-specific permissions.
  • Workspace: the unifying space in which all work takes place. Workspaces house all sub-components such as: teams, projects, members, tasks, etc. An example would be Alpha organization’s “Alpha” workspace which houses their “Marketing” and “Design” teams, each of which have numerous projects within them. Each workspace has unique membership and settings.

Pronouns

An overview of acceptable pronouns for the Tatem product and marketing pages.
  • 1st Person Plural (We, Us, Our, Ourselves): it is acceptable to use 1st person plural across all marketing materials. For sake of clarity, do use 1st person plural pronouns across our product. Within our product, always use “Tatem.”
  • 1st Person Singular (I, Me, My, Mine, Myself): these pronouns should only be considered for use in communication directly from an individual member of the team (e.g. “Chris, Founder at Tatem” or “Sarah, Customer Support”). Use discernment as we want to uphold a professional image and ensure that 1st person plural is used in all instances where we, as a company, are sending out communication of any kind.
  • 2nd Person Singular (You): “You” is an acceptable way to address readers across Tatem’s marketing materials. “You” should be used sparingly throughout Tatem’s product for items such as confirmation modals (e.g. “Are you sure you want to sign out?”) and other similar components.
  • 3rd Person Plural (They, Them, Theirs, Theirselves): an acceptable pronoun for Tatem’s marketing pages (e.g. “We have designed our culture on the belief that people can only innovate when they have the freedom to do so.”).