It's all about voice.


And perception is everything.

Perception is everything. To those around us, we really are what they perceive us to be. Who we really are isn't that important. People size others up very quickly and assign their perception to a person. That may not change for a long time or maybe it never will.

What does this have to do with business? Well, think about it. How do people perceive your business? How does it make them feel? What is their opinion of what you do and how you do it? What do they think of you - based on facts, hearsay or otherwise?

And that brings us to voice. To a writer, voice is everything. If you're writing a book, a character has to have voice. The storyteller has to have voice, so much so that you recognize him/her when he speaks. You come to know the storyteller and from book to book, you can hear their voice. You know it's them because you know their voice.

Businesses have voices. I know that sounds odd. But in marketing, part of the job is to find that voice -- the very best of it -- and bring it to the customer so he hears it, too. When he hears it, it has to make him feel something, it has to evoke something in him. Maybe it's the copy in a marketing piece. Maybe it's just a picture. But something in a marketing piece has to evoke the heart and soul of your business in a way that the customer is drawn to it.

And it has to be genuine.

As a marketer, I love finding the heart and soul of a business and putting it into words and graphics in such a way that others feel the "wow" when they see the piece. That kind of creativity is exhilarating and, quite honestly, it sells.

Which brings us back to this: it's not what you say. It's how you say it.