When I was singing professionally, I would often be onstage with phenomenal singers with extremely powerful voices. I remember a production when someone dared the lead tenor to hold the high note as long as he could at the end of his aria. He actually kept singing as he exited off the stage, down a flight of steps and into his dressing room still holding that same note. The conductor was furious, but we singers thought it was awesome.
Imagine the strength it takes to send your voice over an orchestra to the back of the hall. As entrepreneurs we need to have powerful voices as well if we want to be heard above the noise and reach our audiences. But we are an impatient bunch. We want yummy clients now. We want a book deal yesterday. We want to be invited to speak on big stages and host tv shows next week, right? Unfortunately, it doesn’t happen that way.
You don’t just jump up on stage at the Met and start yodeling and you don’t just throw up a website and start generating thousands of leads in traffic. It takes time and consistent effort to develop a powerful brand voice, but you can speed up the process by following a few key steps:
1. Have a strong point of view. The job of your brand is to help you stand out. If you are liked by everyone, your point of view is probably too weak. Your point of view should ruffle some feathers. How’s this one? “Money is power and everyone should want more of it.” How does that make you feel? Some of you may be offended by that statement and others will be excited. Great! That means it’s working. However, your point of view should not be provocative just to gain attention. It should be something you deeply believe, that makes you heart beat faster or even makes your blood boil. Think of your point of view as the fuel to your brand. It drives your passions and energizes your messaging.
2. Be consistent. Remember the $87 Million flip-flop by Senator John Kerry? He switched his voting position for the military expenditure and the flip-flopping position severely damaged his credibility. Don’t let this happen to your brand. Consistency is key to strength training whether it’s building a bicep or a voice. If you post on Facebook sometimes, if you send out a newsletter sporadically, if you call yourself a life life coach one day and a money coach the next, those are all examples of inconsistency and they chip away at your power voice. On the other hand, if you consistently touch your audience and repeat your messaging over and over again, you will start to power up the volume on your brand.
3. Exhaust your platforms. Better to get one plate spinning really fast than to have three wobble and fall off the stick. You can’t do everything and do it well. It is much better to choose your best marketing platforms and go guns-a-blazing on just a few than to spread yourself thin and dilute your impact. If Facebook is your thing, than rock it out there before you delve into Pinterest or Instagram. You will build much better relationships if you go narrow and deep.
4. Leverage your buddies. As powerful as your voice is, it is only one solo voice. Just imagine if you had a whole chorus of professionals singing your praises? When you create affiliate relationships, your brand gets amplified far beyond what you could do on your own. Find colleagues who share, but don’t compete for your same audience and take turns promoting each other. Then sit back and watch all boats rise.
5. Be a show-off. Remember the tenor from earlier? I do and that’s the point. He was showing off. He was saying “Look at me. I can do something special.” And boy could he ever. What can you do that’s extraordinary? You need to let people know about it. As I often say, you don’t get paid to sing in the shower!
Contrary to popular belief, most singers are not born with amazing voices and neither are successful entrepreneurs. They build their voices with consistent, loud action. So open up and let it rip!
Here’s to hitting all your high notes!!
Your feedback is music to my ears! Where do you hold yourself back from projecting your voice out? Post your answers below in the comments or find me on Facebook. If you would like to use this article on your website or ezine, feel free! Just be sure to include the following:Heather Poduska is a brand strategist, business coach and opera singer who helps entrepreneurs and small business owners create client attractive brands, polished brand images and brand communication strategies to increase their visibility and impact in the marketplace and grow their businesses.