One of the best compliments I ever received for my writing wasn’t how incredible I write or that my vocabulary was stellar.
Nope, the compliment was simply this, “Adrian your content sounds just like you.”
Hearing that, I smiled from ear to ear and also realized a few things:
· I don’t do it “on purpose” and I’m not certain I could write any other way.
· People appreciate authenticity in the content they read.
· It would be a total disconnect for the people that know me if I came across in my content as someone else.
That’s certainly true for me. I read blogs and newsletters sent to me by people I know, and in some cases, it sounds like someone else wrote it. I reckon there are two reasons why this might be:
1. Someone else DID write it but they didn’t capture their voice
2. My contact wrote it but they wanted the content to have a different “personality”
I get it, but I’m also going to suggest that you aim to be YOU, especially in content that will be distributed to your clients, prospects, and business contacts. They already know who you are so it is going to be confusing if your content doesn’t sound like the person that they know.
Do you agree?
So, here’s what you should know about me and what I think comes across in my content too:
· I’m a casual person by nature and tend to engage in “real-speak”
· I’m outspoken and while I can be solicitous, I speak up in the appropriate circumstances
· I’m not verbose so if I can say it in 400 words, I won’t make it 4,000
· I’m funny and believe that if you can get someone to smile, you’ve probably made a friend
Most of the time these characteristics will come across in my writing, or at least, the writing I do for myself. And there’s the rub, sometimes, especially if you are writing for a client, you have to write in THEIR voice.
(If you’re reading this and will write just for yourself, allow yourself a big sigh of relief.)
You see it should be easy for you to sound like you and much more difficult to sound like someone else, especially if you don’t share any of the same personality traits.
Ghost writers can do that very well; after all, they’re writing a book and have no option other than to make it sound exactly like the person who is supposed to be the author. They’re like a chameleon and can change colors (personalities) with ease.
Most people can’t do that.
Most people need to sound like themselves.
I’m okay with who I am and the response I get to my content. I also have lots of clients that are pleased with the tone and manner I convey in the content I write for them, and as long as I get the accurate information across in an engaging manner, they’re happy too.
“Own your brand” and make sure that your brand image is communicated in your words. Don’t sound like someone else or you might just find that you have diluted the brand you’re trying to present to the world.