4 Ways to Amplify Your Voice in 2022
Now is a great time to set clear personal and professional intentions for the year. I’m not talking about new year’s resolutions to exercise more or eat less chocolate (who wants to do that?). Rather, it’s about focusing on what you do want vs worrying about what you don’t want.
With all the noise in our lives (social media, fake news, negativity), we could all use some help in amplifying our voice for the positive.
Here are 4 ways to amplify your voice in 2022 that will work for your personal and professional life.
#1 Get focused
It all starts by being clear on who you are talking to – crystal clear. I see too many people and organizations taking a one-size-fits-no one approach. In their effort to talk to everyone, they are talking to no one.
For example, when I work with governments on strategic communications plans, when I ask who is their target audience, I often hear – taxpayers. Seriously? I can promise you there is no person who would identify solely as a taxpayer.
How can you possibly create messaging that resonates with a 90-year-old woman living in a rural community and a 25-year-old man just starting his career living in the downtown core? When you take this approach, I promise you that no one is listening.
This is why the first step in amplifying your voice is to know who you are talking to – focusing on their personal interests, pain points and how you can help them. Think of this person as someone sitting across the table from you – giving them a name, age, identity. Then tailor your message to fit their needs, not yours.
#2 Be authentic
No one respects the slimy car salesperson or slick one-liners. With our isolation due to COVID restrictions, our desire for authentic communications and personal connections continues to increase.
People want to see the real you. This holds true for both businesses and individuals.
Share your vulnerabilities, concerns and challenges – not just your successes. I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty tired of the Instagram perfect lives. It’s not real or sustainable.
I’m not saying you focus solely on your struggles, but rather ask yourself does your communications style reflect who you are as a person. Or are you wearing a mask?
I find when I’m authentic, I’m able to make personal connections with my clients, social media followers and friends. I often hear – but you seem so put together, I had no idea you also struggle with XX. Thanks for sharing, as I thought I was the only one.
Once I’ve made that personal connection, by being authentic, people are more likely to tune in to what I have to say.
This was the biggest challenge I had when I transitioned from working in organizations (where wearing a mask was encouraged) to being a consultant. It took a lot of coaching to tap into the authentic me and let her shine.
Once I took this step, I started attracting clients who resonate with who I am and the work I do – which makes it no longer seem like work!
#3 Choose your social channel
Agghh social media – the necessary evil. When I talk with clients about social media, I usually get one of two responses. I have no idea where to start – it’s all so overwhelming. Do we even need to be on social media? Or – we are on Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIN, Facebook, you name it we are there. No, we don’t have a plan, but we’re on there.
Here’s the thing with social media, it’s better to hone in and do one channel well vs throwing spaghetti at the wall to see what sticks.
Go back to who you are talking to – your target audience. What social media channels do they use in their personal and professional life? Where do they go to get information?
Now what makes most sense for you as a person and/or organization?
For example, if you’re selling crafts you want to be on Instagram or Pintrest. But if you’re sharing information, Twitter or Facebook are better fits. Business to business is often done on LinkedIN.
And don’t forget to use the chosen social media channel in your personal life so you can hone your skills and truly understand how to make a connection (by being aware of what gets you to tune in or out).
#4 Have fun
We can all use a little bit more lightheartedness and less seriousness. You don’t need to be a comedian, but being a corporate robot isn’t a great way to amplify your voice.
Give yourself some permission to have some fun. If you see a funny cat meme, feel free to share (but not to the point you are the crazy cat person). If you make a mistake in your Facebook Live video, laugh about it and carry on.
Too often we want people to see the polished and professional us, carefully editing out the missteps. This just puts a wall between us and others.
When I speak at conferences or my corporate training, I often share stories of when things didn’t go as plan, bringing some humour to topics that may otherwise be dry. I have fun with the information, as I find through laughter, people are more engaged.
Amplifying your voice takes time, practice and being clear on your intentions. But in an age of digital overload, it is worth the effort to be able to break through the noise and be heard.
I encourage you to be clear on your intentions for 2022 and look for ways to implement these 4 tips. Amplify your voice as the world needs to hear from you!!!
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