Harness Your Brand Voice
With such confusions don't it make you wanna scream Your bash abusin' victimize within the scheme
You try to cope with every lie they scrutinize
Somebody please have mercy 'Cause I just can't take it
Stop pressurin' me, just stop pressurin' me Stop pressurin' me, make me wanna scream
-Scream, Michael + Janet Jackson
For years, I painted the image of a blonde female screaming her lungs out. Angsty images of her in the middle of something – a crowd, a black hole, a pile of trash, skulls. It was, looking back, my own cry for help. My own acknowledgment that my voice was NOT being heard, or I was not using my voice. Subconsciously, I knew that this was how I was reacting to the limitations I was putting on myself and that society had pressed onto me, but consciously, it took many years before I realized what these images truly represented for me.
Throat Chakra – Voice – Blue – Vishuddha Along my journey as a yogi, I studied the system of the chakras. The term chakra is an ancient Sanskrit word meaning “wheel” or “disk” and along the yogic journey, they are energy centers within the body that correlate to various physical and spiritual aspects of our life. Since gaining an understanding of the chakras, it has become evident that my throat chakra is where my imbalances most often occur. The throat chakra, Vishuddha, is the fifth chakra and deals with the endocrine system, speaking truth, and hearing. My imbalance here is hereditary also, as my dad struggles to speak up and use the right words, often twisting idioms such as a bird in the hand is like a barrel of monkeys. We laughed growing up at my dad’s confusion of words, but then I began to realize that I too do the same. I see these imbalances daily and they frustrate me excessively. My greatest annoyance is whenever I am creating content I have an excessive use of typos. When I speak, I insert the wrong words at times. As a yoga instructor, I often get visibly tongue-tied during classes, skip sides, and confuse my rights and lefts. My husband often mentions how I don’t say what I mean, nor mean what I say. It’s quite true; inside my soul, my head gets confused attempting to sort out what I mean and what I need. A while back, when I began to recognize this pattern, I paced my basement repeating affirmations to help find my voice. Phrases such as:
I speak my Truth clearly.
I am expressing myself with clear intent.
Creativity flows in and out of me.
I am safe and trust others to allow me to express myself truthfully.
I listen to my body, feelings, and intuition to know what I need.
Looking back on this now, I see that this repetition of affirmations helped me to begin aligning the imbalance. This has aided in me muddling through the concoctions that are my thoughts at times to find my own voice and truth. It took a while, but I know now without a doubt that I am on the path to healing in this realm.
As a yoga instructor, during one of my teacher training sessions, we were encouraged to assist others with opening and finding their own voices during yoga. The practice implemented that if we encourage others to find and use their voices, that collectively we will begin to harness truth and thereby foster a greater sense of communal strength. This was during a Buti Yoga training, where the voices of women are typically found yelling and emitting loud whoops during class. The way we encourage others, and ourselves to open our throat chakra is demonstrated by beginning class by gently dropping the head back, opening the throat and releasing the jaw. This allows participants to find release, expression and therefore participate more fully in class with their own shouts of joy while sweating, jumping, and laughing during class.
These combined efforts of a Buti Yoga practice, alongside meshing affirmations into my personal self-care practice, have given me the strength to overcome the desire to paint a screaming, suffering female in the midst of her circumstances.
Voice in Branding
I cannot write about voice without considering what voice means to a company and how to find a brand’s voice. But what exactly IS “brand voice”? Brand voice and tone take the entirety of who you are as a company and rolling it into a definition, with structure and personality. Once that is defined, then the goal is staying consistent with that image across all avenues of communication. One fabulous example of a unique brand voice is found at Moosejaw. Moosejaw is an outdoor retail distributor that has a sarcastic and fun personality. When you go to their site, the first thing you see is a pop-up that states: “Sign up to receive sweet deals, exclusive offers, brand features, and generally the funniest emails from Moosejaw (according to my mom).” Immediately you smile and are drawn in thinking about perhaps, your own mom. When you receive a package from Moosejaw, some of the labelings says, “use teeth to open” and “hurry, open, let the ghost out!” These defining qualities of Moosejaw give the company a voice and personality that customers identify with, while creating a connection, and establishing a consumer relationship that feels more personal.
Crafting an Authentic Voice Within Your Brand
As authenticity and relationship marketing replace sales-y lingo, we can all as business owners breathe a sigh of relief. While crafting your product and service, it is wise to put the thoughts of who your voice is at the forefront of all that you do. Let your personality guide your voice, as this is the most authentic format of all, and will be easy to implement. If you are not an inherently sarcastic soul, then your brand will most likely not do well to try and be as such. Perhaps you can create a sense of ease for your customer, of positivity, of _____________ (insert what you are already thinking about your own brand).
Authentic Voice to Create Cohesive Branding
As business owners, we know you work hard and think of your brand day and night. As creatives, we know thoughts and ideas can swirl in your head nonstop. Taking on both of these roles together offers a more desirable and concise service for your clients through the delivery of your product or offer. The management, organization, and presentation of these ideas and marketing strategies can be overwhelming. Let us help. We think you should feel empowered to you to find your voice, harness it, and share with your audience, showcasing consistent, cohesive branding. We love taking your stories and ideas to the next level and guiding you to use your own voice to allow your brand to speak for itself!