"We" or "I" on labels?

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Kari Howie

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I have been making CP soap for about 3 years and even started my own teensy little company--trademarked name, logo and all. Well now I am writing an ingredients blurb in the "conversational" described by Marie Gale in her book. I wrote everything in the "I make" "I use" etc format and sent it off to my daughter to critique. She said I should change it to "We" because it sounds more like how a professional brand would talk about itself. Unless I use the royal "We", I can't see including an imaginary helper who hasn't helped me make soap. What say y'all?
 

DeeAnna

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"We" implies there are two or more people involved or someone wants the "voice" of the company to feel more impersonal. I think you also see the "royal we" used by companies that want to appear more high end or sophisticated. Often stuff written with the royal we sounds contrived and snooty, but that's just me. ;)

"I" implies a single person who is deeply involved in all aspects of the company and who approaches the business as a craftsman or artisan.
 

Kari Howie

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"We" implies there are two or more people involved or someone wants the "voice" of the company to feel more impersonal. I think you also see the "royal we" used by companies that want to appear more high end or sophisticated. Often stuff written with the royal we sounds contrived and snooty, but that's just me. ;)

"I" implies a single person who is deeply involved in all aspects of the company and who approaches the business as a craftsman or artisan.
Yes! Thank you for affirming what I felt.
 

Zany_in_CO

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I would use neither "I" nor "We" to describe how the soap is made. Try using "The soap" as the subject.
I haven't read Marie Gale's excellent book but I have done a lot of editing over the years. When writing "blurbs" the less said the better. Aim at getting the message across in 2-3 well-written sentences or even phrases, if that suits your style and message.

PS: If you think you can handle a brutal carnage of your prose, Kari, feel free to post what you wrote here and let me (and others) have at it! heh, heh. :D
 

Michele50

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I would use neither "I" nor "We" to describe how the soap is made. Try using "The soap" as the subject.
I haven't read Marie Gale's excellent book but I have done a lot of editing over the years. When writing "blurbs" the less said the better. Aim at getting the message across in 2-3 well-written sentences or even phrases, if that suits your style and message.

PS: If you think you can handle a brutal carnage of your prose, Kari, feel free to post what you wrote here and let me (and others) have at it! heh, heh. :D
Very Good Point! The "soap" is actually the subject so that makes perfect sense. The focus is on the ingredients chosen and used so the blurb can be told from the point of view of the 'soap,' as it were. I've never written one so I have no clue but this post has me learning something.

The soap contains bla, bla, bla for bla bla reason....instead of, I use bla, bla, bla when I make bla, bla, bla.

I wrote a parent manual for our large Childcare Center and one for my employees. I asked one of the parents to read them and offer feedback--good and BAD. I actually told her that I was interested in any negatives because it would be of much help. It's advantageous to have objective criticism when one is trying to do something efficiently.
 

lucycat

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Who is your customer? If I did wholesale I might consider "We" and probably "the soap" as suggested. I don't. I sell to individuals and they know me and my business name is simply an extension of me. So, "I" makes more sense. I think it depends on you and how you perceive your business and the expectations of your customer base.
 

DeeAnna

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I would agree it's also not good to start every sentence with "I". If a person is presenting an artist statement of goals, however, it may be hard to entirely avoid "I" and use "the soap" or similar "not I" nouns as the subject.

Also beware of using the passive voice to avoid the use of "I". "The soap is made with..." (passive) is not better than "I make the soap with..." (active).
 

TheGecko

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I have been making CP soap for about 3 years and even started my own teensy little company--trademarked name, logo and all. Well now I am writing an ingredients blurb in the "conversational" described by Marie Gale in her book. I wrote everything in the "I make" "I use" etc format and sent it off to my daughter to critique. She said I should change it to "We" because it sounds more like how a professional brand would talk about itself. Unless I use the royal "We", I can't see including an imaginary helper who hasn't helped me make soap. What say y'all?
For that particular blurb, I would avoid all pronoun and use something like..."Kari Soaps are only made with high quality ingredients; Extra Virgin Oil (pressed by actual virgins), Palm Oil (RSPO Certified), Coconut Oil (76 deg), Cocoa Butter (organic), blah blah blah. Essential Oils and Fragrance Oils are thoroughly tested for purity and cruelty free."

The use of "I/My" or "We/Our" would be dependent on a number of factors. As an example, I used to have a company that provided legal document preparation services for pro se litigants. My decision to start the business was strictly business and since it was my intent to grow the business beyond a single individual, and because I wanted to present a more professional appearance I used "We/Our" or simply the name of the company.

My decision to start a soap company is more personal even though it is my intent to grow the business and make oodles and oodles of money so I can retire before I die and buy an RV and travel the country and leave the soap making to someone else. Hey, I can dream! Seriously though, I noticed that since I eliminated antibacterial soaps from our house three years ago, none of us have been getting sick every year like we used to. Using my soaps exclusively the last three months the rough, dry patches on the bottom of my forearms are gone. I've been saying for years that the reasons why we have so many health issues is because we have been poisoning our bodies with chemicals...from the foods we ingest, to the stuff we use on our bodies. So the history of why I started my company will be personal, the rest will be business.
 

Michele50

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For that particular blurb, I would avoid all pronoun and use something like..."Kari Soaps are only made with high quality ingredients; Extra Virgin Oil (pressed by actual virgins), Palm Oil (RSPO Certified), Coconut Oil (76 deg), Cocoa Butter (organic), blah blah blah. Essential Oils and Fragrance Oils are thoroughly tested for purity and cruelty free."

The use of "I/My" or "We/Our" would be dependent on a number of factors. As an example, I used to have a company that provided legal document preparation services for pro se litigants. My decision to start the business was strictly business and since it was my intent to grow the business beyond a single individual, and because I wanted to present a more professional appearance I used "We/Our" or simply the name of the company.

My decision to start a soap company is more personal......"
Very good explanation of how to approach a blurb and what things to consider.

"......Seriously though, I noticed that since I eliminated antibacterial soaps from our house three years ago, none of us have been getting sick every year like we used to. Using my soaps exclusively the last three months the rough, dry patches on the bottom of my forearms are gone. I've been saying for years that the reasons why we have so many health issues is because we have been poisoning our bodies with chemicals...from the foods we ingest, to the stuff we use on our bodies. So the history of why I started my company will be personal, the rest will be business."
@TheGecko, I agree with your comments about chemicals in things--products and foods. I've had serious problems with hands since childhood. At the age 15, bathing with shampoo instead of bar soap (not much better, but some) helped but, not until I started making soap 3 years ago did the drying out of hands to the point of cracking open and bleeding end. I must take the 'real' soap with me when we travel and stay at hotels or visit our adult sons because their commercial "soaps" bring back all those issues--sandpaper skin, fissures, open cuts, and then bleeding.

With everyone's help, if I ever want to write a blurb (for anything) I'll be ahead of the game due to all the good points in this thread.
 

Obsidian

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So how many of you who sell actually write a blurb on your products? Have you ever gotten feed back, good or bad on this practice?

I don't see this often and when I do, it always turns me off. I didn't figure this was a common thing to do.
 

Zany_in_CO

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I use cigar band type labels for my soaps. Upper left corner says
Zany Handmade Soap
then this little blurb:
One of Life's Little Luxuries
 

TheGecko

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So how many of you who sell actually write a blurb on your products? Have you ever gotten feed back, good or bad on this practice?

I have on my labels what is required by US law: On the front is the name of my company, the name of my soap (which includes the word "soap") and the weight in ounces/grams. On the back is the list of ingredients, my website and the city/state that it is made in. I don't have to include my physical address (my home) since it is publically available through the Secretary of State's office.

I don't see this often and when I do, it always turns me off. I didn't figure this was a common thing to do.
Why would a tagline turn you off?
 

TheGecko

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Very good explanation of how to approach a blurb and what things to consider.
The simple fact is, there is a lot of negativity surrounding 'home-based' businesses and/or home crafts. A lot of people want to imagine that their soap in being made by folks in hazmat suits surrounded by stainless steel vats...not wearing jammies in their kitchen using bowls and spatulas they bought from the Dollar Store/Tree/General. Even if they know that their soap is being 'handcrafted', they still image quaint little soap 'studios', not converted basements or garages.

While I currently make soap on a rolling kitchen island while wearing jammies and using bowls and spatulas that I bought from the Dollar Store, my goal is to have a small storefront and a back room where I can make my soap and teach soap making.
 
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Misschief

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Wait.... on labels? Nope.... nothing regarding me or I. However, I have a brochure that I include with my products. In it, I refer to both I and we. Labels, however, have the name of the product, the weight, the ingredients and whatever I am supposed to put on the labels but no "blurb". Labels are for the facts, not the explanations.
 
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