Hello. My name is Amanda, and I am addicted to voice notes.
It all started when I got my first blackberry - I would be so filled at the end of a meeting or work day with ideas, reminders and brainstorms that I got used to (and so have my kids) just talking aloud into a tiny microphone with all of the passion, conviction and exuberance of a Southern evangelist.
I have always been one to express through my voice, but this was never more important when it came to running a business and building my own brand.
After all, my ideas were..... mine. Yes, they came in part from past experience, industry trends and topics that were 'not new' in marketing circles - but the concepts, placement and tone of my ideas were original - where I wanted to set myself apart.
What these voice notes represented (listening back on them now and cringing at the sound of my voice) were the seeds of my own key messages and core values shining through - tightening, strengthening and sounding exactly like... me. Not some jargon-filled version of what I had read and heard a thousand times before in my industry.
Give it a try...
Tips about approaching your own voice notes exercise:
- Pick a topic/subject matter that you encounter regularly at work. positive or negative.
- Don't be shy - there's no one around. It's just you.
- Keep talking- don't hit pause too quickly
- Run on sentences are ok- as are the occasional 'uhm...'
- Now play it back.
- Add to it if you think of something else.
Now, if you end up sounding like a boring robot version of yourself - ask yourself why? Were the words yours, truly and authentically? Did you default to what is on your company brochure or business card or did you express real opinion or an original concept or two?
Ideas on topics: Is there things you disagree (or agree) with strongly in your industry? Have you vowed to do something differently? Have you a new thought or concept that hasn't been tested before. Do you get upset when you read or hear certain things from clients on a regular basis? Do certain 'best practices' align with your own vision and ideas.
That should get you fired up enough for now....
So grab your smart phones, your hairbrush, or baker's whisk and HEAR your own voice and thoughts as they spill out. They may surprise you - and you may be on your way to nailing down some of your own key messages and finding a unique identity.
Related article: Business Speak is NOT a language