ChatGPT Style Guide: Understanding Voice and Tone Prompt Options for Engaging Conversations

In a previous article, we looked at the value proposition of generative AI and ChatGPT (What is the Business Value of OpenAI’s GPT Models (ChatGPT)?). A standout feature of ChatGPT is its ability to write in different styles and tones. Whether you’re aiming for a professional message, a friendly vibe, a sprinkle of humor and fun, or a display of empathy and understanding, ChatGPT has a vast spectrum of options to cater to your unique needs. The question is, how do you unlock these writing styles? This ChatGPT style guide presents seven vibrant writing styles and describes how to trigger them with the right prompt. Each style has a detailed breakdown of when and how to utilize it.

Also: Mastering Prompt Engineering for ChatGPT

Voice and Tone: The Building Blocks of Engaging Conversation

ChatGPT is programmed to understand natural language, so you can use variations of these commands or use your own language to convey what you need. For instance, if you want to ask for advice in a professional tone, you can prompt:
“Please give me advice on writing a cover letter in a professional tone.”

Similarly, if you’re looking for a humorous response to a question, you can use a prompt like:
“Tell me a funny way to explain what AI is.”

ChatGPT is designed to cater to a wide range of conversational styles by offering various voice and tone options. Each option serves a unique purpose and can be utilized to achieve the desired effect in your communication:

  1. Professional writing style
  2. Conversational writing style
  3. Humorous writing style
  4. Empathic writing style
  5. Simple writing style
  6. Academic writing style
  7. Creative writing style

Let’s look at these options in more detail. For each writing style, you will find a sample response from ChatGPT.

Also: Eliminating Friction: How OpenAI’s GPT Streamlines Online Experiences and Reduces the Need for Traditional Search

Understanding the different styles can help you get better responses from ChatGPT. Image created with Midjourney.

Writing Style #1 Professional

The professional voice and tone is an excellent option for conveying authority, credibility, and professionalism in a variety of business and formal settings. This voice and tone are characterized by a polished, formal, and respectful style that conveys a sense of expertise and competence. It is best suited for use in situations such as job interviews, presentations, formal emails, or any other context where the tone needs to be formal and authoritative.

When to Use the Professional Style?

  • Business Correspondence: Professional writing is often used in business correspondence, such as emails, memos, reports, and proposals.
  • Academic Writing: Professional style is also commonly used in academic writing, such as research papers, essays, and dissertations.
  • Legal Documents: Legal documents, such as contracts, agreements, and patents, require a professional writing style to ensure clarity and accuracy.
  • Job Applications: When writing a resume or cover letter for a job application, a professional writing style is necessary to convey your skills and qualifications.
  • Presentations: Professional style is also suitable for presentations, where you need to convey information clearly and persuasively to your audience.

Sample Prompt and Response

Write five sentences on the history of generative AI. Use a professional voice and tone. Use industry-specific language and terminology, provide detailed and accurate information, and support your argument with statistics, research, and expert opinions.

Generative AI has its roots in early efforts to develop computer models of human thought and creativity. In the 1950s and 1960s, researchers such as Christopher Strachey and John McCarthy explored the idea of creating computer programs that could generate new content. In the 1990s, generative AI began to gain traction with the advent of deep learning algorithms, which enabled machines to learn patterns in data and create new content based on those patterns. Today, generative AI is a rapidly evolving field, with new breakthroughs being made all the time in areas such as natural language processing and image generation. Despite its potential for creativity and innovation, there are also ethical concerns surrounding the use of generative AI, such as the potential for it to be used in the creation of deepfake content.

How to get a Professional Style?

Use professional voice and tone. Use industry-specific language and terminology, provide detailed and accurate information, and support your argument with statistics, research, and expert opinions.

Writing Style #2 Conversational

The conversational style is perfect for creating an informal, friendly, and approachable tone in your interactions with ChatGPT. This voice and tone can be used to simulate a real-life conversation. It makes the user feel like they are talking to a real person rather than a machine.

When to Use the Conversational Style?

  • Blog posts: If you run a personal or business blog, you may want to use a conversational writing style to engage your readers and make your content more relatable.
  • Social media posts: Using a conversational tone, you can build relationships with your followers and encourage them to engage with your content.
  • Emails: In some cases, a conversational tone can be appropriate for emails, especially for friends, family, or colleagues you are familiar with.
  • Personal statements: If you are writing a personal statement, such as a college application essay, a conversational tone can help you connect with the reader and convey your personality.
  • Product descriptions: In e-commerce, a conversational tone can be used to make product descriptions more engaging and to highlight the benefits of a product in a friendly, approachable way.

Sample Prompt and Response

Write an email to Georg and ask him if he can help you with your math exam. Use conversational voice and tone. Imagine you’re talking to a friend and use natural language and phrasing.

Hey Georg,

I hope this email finds you well. I was wondering if you’d be able to help me out with my math exam. I’ve been struggling with some of the concepts and could really use some extra support.

I was hoping we could maybe schedule a study session sometime this week. I promise I’ll bring snacks to fuel our brains! Let me know if that works for you, and we can figure out a time and place that’s convenient.

Thanks so much for your help, and let me know if there’s anything I can do in return.

Best regards,

How to get a Conversational Style?

Use conversational voice and tone. Imagine you're talking to a friend and use natural language and phrasing. 

Writing Style #3 Humorous

The humorous style is perfect for breaking the ice, lightening the mood, and injecting a sense of fun and playfulness into your conversations. This tone can be used to engage and entertain your audience, making them feel more comfortable and connected with you. Humor can also help to build rapport, defuse tension, and make your message more memorable.

When to Use the Humorous Style?

  • Marketing: A humorous writing style can be used in advertisements to capture the attention of the audience and make the brand more memorable.
  • Social Media Posts: A humorous writing style can make the information more engaging and shareable in certain types of content, such as social media posts or blog articles.
  • Presentations: In presentations or speeches, incorporating humor can help break the ice and make the audience more receptive to the message.
  • Customer Service: A humorous writing style can also be used in customer service interactions to defuse tension and create a more positive experience for the customer.

Sample Prompt and Response

Explain Generative AI in 5 sentences.Use a humorous voice and tone, include jokes, and write with irony when appropriate.

Generative AI is like a mad scientist who creates new things using nothing but a bunch of data and some complicated algorithms. It’s like a robot version of Michelangelo painting the Sistine Chapel, except instead of paint, it’s using ones and zeros. It’s the ultimate form of recycling – taking old data and turning it into something shiny and new. But watch out, because if we’re not careful, the robots might just take over and start creating things we never even imagined. So, let’s all welcome our new AI overlords with open arms and plenty of data to feed them!

How to Trigger the Humorous Style?

Use a humorous voice and tone, include jokes, and write with irony when appropriate.

Writing Style #4 Empathic

The empathic style is a tone that is characterized by sensitivity, compassion, and understanding. This tone is ideal for situations where you need to connect with your audience on an emotional level, such as when dealing with sensitive or difficult topics. The empathic style can also be used to build trust and establish rapport with your audience.

When to Use the Empathic Style?

  • Customer support: When dealing with a customer who is frustrated or upset, the empathic style can help you connect with them on a personal level, showing that you understand and care about their situation.
  • Healthcare: In healthcare-related contexts, the empathic style can be effective in showing patients that you understand their concerns and are committed to helping them.
  • Social issues: When addressing sensitive social issues such as discrimination or inequality, the empathic style can be used to demonstrate your commitment to understanding and empathizing with those who have been affected.
  • Personal development: The empathic style can also be useful in coaching or self-help contexts, where understanding and empathy are important components of personal growth and development.

Sample Prompt and Response

Write an Email to Erin that you won’t be able to come to her birthday party. Use empathetic voice and tone.

Dear Erin,

I wanted to let you know that unfortunately, I won’t be able to make it to your birthday party this weekend. I know how much this event means to you, and I feel terrible for not being able to attend.

Hope you have a wonderful birthday celebration and create amazing memories with your loved ones. Let me know if there is anything I can do to make it up to you.

Take care and enjoy your special day.

How to Trigger the Empathic Style?

Use empathetic voice and tone. 

Writing Style #5 Academic

Academic writing uses formal language and sophisticated vocabulary. It involves in-depth analysis and research. Complex concepts and scientific principles are explained clearly. Academic writing often cites sources and presents counterarguments. This writing style is suitable for scholarly articles and academic publications.

When to Use the Academic Writing Style

  • Writing a research paper for a scientific journal.
  • Composing a thesis or dissertation.
  • Writing a literature review for an academic publication.
  • Writing a technical report or white paper for a professional audience.
  • Preparing a grant proposal for funding a research project.

Sample Prompt and Response

Explain few-shot learning. Use a formal and academic tone, advanced vocabulary and grammar, and provide a thorough analysis of the subject matter. Explain complex concepts clearly and use examples from various fields. Present counterarguments objectively.

Few-shot learning is a type of machine learning that allows a model to learn from only a few examples, as opposed to traditional machine learning, which typically requires a large dataset. The goal of few-shot learning is to improve the ability of models to generalize to new situations with limited training data.

How to get an Academic Writing Style?

Use a formal and academic tone, advanced vocabulary and grammar, and provide a thorough analysis of the subject matter. Explain complex concepts clearly and use examples from various fields. Present counterarguments objectively.

Writing Style #6 Simple

Simple writing uses straightforward language and short sentences. It avoids jargon and complex vocabulary. The goal is to make information easily accessible to readers. Simple writing often targets a 5th-grade reading level. This writing style is suitable for explaining topics to a wide audience.

When to Use the Simple Writing Style?

  • Writing instructions for a manual or guide
  • Creating marketing materials for a broad audience
  • Writing for individuals with cognitive or language impairments
  • Creating content for social media or blogs with a focus on readability and accessibility
  • Writing emails or memos to colleagues or clients who prefer a straightforward communication style.

Sample Prompt and Response

Explain Generative AI in 5 sentences. Use simple language, break down complex concepts into frameworks or models, and provide practical takeaways.

Generative AI is a type of artificial intelligence that creates new content, such as images, videos, or text, based on existing data inputs. It uses complex algorithms and models to generate outputs that resemble the original data, but with unique variations and combinations. Generative AI can be used in a wide range of applications, including art, music, and design, to create new and innovative content. To achieve optimal results with generative AI, it’s essential to have high-quality and diverse data inputs, as well as a well-designed algorithm that can effectively capture the patterns and trends in the data. Ultimately, generative AI provides a powerful tool for businesses and creators to explore new possibilities and push the boundaries of what’s possible in the digital world.

How to get the Simple Writing Style?

Use simple language, break down complex concepts into frameworks or models, and provide practical takeaways.

Writing Style #7 Creative

The creative writing style is all about using vivid and imaginative language to paint a picture in the reader’s mind. It often employs literary devices like similes, metaphors, and personification to make the writing more engaging and evocative. This style encourages authors to explore unique perspectives and ideas in their writing. Creative writing can be found in various forms such as novels, short stories, poetry, and even personal essays. The goal is to captivate the reader and evoke emotions through the power of words and storytelling.

When to Use the Creative Writing Style

  • Writing a short story or novel
  • Crafting a poem
  • Creating marketing copy that stands out from the competition
  • Designing an engaging social media post or caption
  • Developing content for a creative writing class or workshop
  • Drafting a screenplay or script for film or theater
  • Writing a personal essay or memoir with a unique voice and style

Sample Prompt and Response

Write an invitation to the 30th birthday party of Peter. Use vivid language to create imagery and atmosphere. Use metaphors, and personification.

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the celebration of a milestone birthday! Tonight, we gather to honor the one and only Peter as he turns thirty years young. As the sun sets and the stars come out to play, the air is electric with anticipation and excitement. The balloons are bobbing, the confetti is ready to be thrown, and the candles on the cake are flickering, waiting to be blown out. The night is alive with the sound of laughter and celebration, and we can feel the energy pulsing through the room like a living, breathing entity. So let’s raise a glass, toast to Peter, and get this party started!

How to get the Creative Writing Style?

Use vivid language to create imagery and atmosphere. Use metaphors, and personification.

Additional Prompt Instructions

When crafting a prompt for ChatGPT, it’s important to keep in mind that the AI model can effectively structure its response using headings, subheadings, and bullet points. By including these elements in your prompt, you can guide ChatGPT to create a well-organized and easy-to-follow response that effectively communicates the information you need.

To ensure that ChatGPT incorporates headings, subheadings, and bullet points in its response, be sure to include them explicitly in your prompt instructions. For example, you can tell the model to use a main heading to introduce the main topic of your prompt, followed by subheadings to break down specific aspects of that topic. Use bullet points to highlight key takeaways or important information.

Sample Prompt and Response

Describe generative AI. Use Headings and subheadings to structure the description.


Generative AI is a field of artificial intelligence that focuses on creating computer models capable of producing outputs that resemble human creations, such as images, music, or language.

I. What is Generative AI? Generative AI refers to a class of machine learning models designed to create new data that did not exist before. It is based on a set of rules, patterns, and probabilities that the algorithm follows to generate outputs that are similar to what it has learned from the training data.

II. Applications of Generative AI Generative AI has found many applications in various industries, such as:

  • Image and video generation
  • Music and sound synthesis
  • Natural language processing and dialogue generation
  • Gaming and virtual reality
  • Drug discovery and molecular design
  • Text-to-speech and speech-to-text conversion

Configuration Options of the ChatGPT API

If you are using the OpenAI API, the temperature setting is an additional configuration option that influences the style of writing. You can find more information on the temperature setting in the OpenAI documentation.

The temperature option in ChatGPT is a setting that controls the level of randomness or creativity in the responses generated by the model. When set to a low temperature, the responses tend to be more predictable and safe, while higher temperatures result in more varied and unpredictable responses.

This setting can significantly impact the tone and style of writing, as it can influence the degree of creativity and spontaneity in the language used. For example, a lower temperature setting may result in more formal and straightforward responses, while a higher temperature setting may lead to more playful or experimental language.

Additionally, the temperature setting can be used to tailor the writing style to a specific audience or purpose. For instance, a more formal or professional tone may be appropriate for business communications, while a more casual or humorous tone may be more suitable for social media interactions.


ChatGPT’s wide range of voice and tone options can greatly enhance your user experience by allowing you to adapt its writing style to match your specific needs. The seven writing styles presented in this article showcase the diverse range of techniques that writers can employ to engage and connect with their audience. By following this ChatGPT style guide, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge and tools necessary to utilize ChatGPT’s different writing styles, whether it be for professional or personal communication.

The ability to effectively communicate and engage with others is essential in today’s fast-paced digital world, and ChatGPT provides a powerful tool to help you do just that. By leveraging the different voice and tone options available in ChatGPT, you can tailor your interactions to suit your audience and achieve your communication goals.

I hope this article was helpful. If you have any questions, let me know in the comments.

Prompt engineering allows you to tailor an AI conversation to your goals as well as the requirements and preferences of your audience.
Prompt engineering allows you to tailor an AI conversation to your goals as well as the requirements and preferences of your audience. Image created with midjourney.

Sources and Further Reading

5 2 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

1 Comment
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x