The Quandary of Voicemail Messaging

Because hearing your own voice is such a miserable experience.

I have an issue with my own voice. When I listen to myself speak (in my head), I sound smooth and sexy. I have a rich, warm baritone.

But whenever I hear myself on a voicemail message or see myself in a video, I cringe and recoil in horror. My confident and pleasing register has been reduced to a nasally, monotone whine.

You might feel the same way about yourself. People come in all types of voices. Some are sultry, some are your grandma. You never know what you’re going to get.

It’s why calling a company, making your way through an automated system, and then leaving a message can be such a weird experience. Many companies have a professional voice for their system (whether it’s natural and not a “radio voice” is another question), but often they don’t use the same voice actor for individual voicemails. It can sound funky when the brand-consistent voice actor transfers to the crusty old dude, or the perky IVR voice throws to Ms. No Charisma. It’s a Voice Branding disconnect.

It’s important to consider a “single-voice user experience” when crafting your Voice Brand. It’s important to present a professional voice to customers, sure, but doing it piecemeal usually isn’t enough.

Because if you sound displeasing to yourself, imagine how you sound to customers.

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