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Monthly Archives: August 2011


What's Your Voice?

Posted on August 23, 2011 by jstratton

We have all done it, you see a cute puppy or kitten or any kind of baby animal.  Your voice changes to that of a 4 year old as you try to talk and make this adorable creature smile – “hello little puppy”, “Your soooo cute”, you get the idea.  You’re probably saying it out loud right now as you read this – I did every time I proofed this post.  This honest voice is to be pleasant, soothing, trusting or to just share a smile.  Usually the response is great, you get a purr or a wagging tail or even some polite slobber if you’re lucky.

So how in the world does this relate to marketing? Ask yourself this - "What is our company's "customer" voice?"  I’m not saying to talk to your customer like a puppy, unless that’s your customer, but to force yourself into that state of being the most honest and polite voice you can.  By honest, I mean that your voice, or the voice of your employee is the voice of the brand, and your staff are the ambassadors of that brand.  The way we speak to a customer, the way we “handle” them are reflections of the brand.  We've seen it time and time again—we approach a sales counter—no eye contact, no hello, just “what can I do for you” in a monotone.  That is your first impression of the brand.  On the other hand, the glad-handing, high energy sales rep with a commission gleam in his eye is also a reflection of the brand.  So if the brand experience, not to mention the product, falls short of your expectation, are you going to purchase from that company again? Not likely.  That's because those companies don't care, or are talking to you in the voice they think you want to hear.  But when the voice and the product live up to or exceeds your expectation, you become a repeat customer.

When you get to your true voice, your honest voice, then you are showing your brand, your identity, who you are and why it matters. Those who take the risk of being out there for the world to understand receive the largest gains.  It doesn’t matter if you are trying to build more likes on your Facebook page or selling million dollar yachts’, your voice needs to say who you are in the most honest way possible.

Here is a portion of the definition for "human voice" provided by Wikipedia:

"The human voice consists of sound made by a human being using the vocal folds, a body part, for talking, singing, laughing, crying, screaming, etc."

So you see, we are born with the ability to change our voice, but can you speak to your customer, your staff and/or your investors in your best brand voice?  Do you need help with your Brand Voice? - Force 5 can help.  Oh, we can help with the puppy voice too.  Our staff members, Brady and Sophie can be ready at a moment's notice!


A Force for Good - Voting has begun!

Posted on August 15, 2011 by ddefreeuw

ZIP! POW! VOTE NOW! That’s right, the Force for Good contest has 19 nominees in the running for the $5,000.00 service package from Force 5 and voting is now open. The Team at Force 5 would like to take this opportunity to thank all who nominated their favorite local hero. Now we ask that you do your part and vote for your favorite non-profit. Pay it forward by becoming aware of all the nominees and the good works they do right here in our community. You can vote 1 time per 24 hour period during the 12-day voting period which ends Friday, August 26 at 5:00 p.m. So, make sure to tell all your friends to visit www.force4good.org and vote every day. The 10 NPO’s who receive the greatest number of online votes will be considered based on application strength, need for service and community impact potential. The winner will be announced on September 6, 2011. Here is a list, in no particular order, of the 19 NPO’s that have accepted their nomination. Good luck to all!

  1. Heroes Camp, Inc.
  2. Youth Service Bureau of St. Joseph County
  3. Big Brothers Big Sisters of St. Joseph County
  4. Hannah’s House, Inc.
  6. Unity Gardens, Inc.
  7. Heartland Small Animal Rescue
  8. Crooked Creek Ranch Horseback Riding Ministries, Inc.
  9. Food Bank of Northern Indiana
  10. YMCA of Michiana, Inc.
  11. American Red Cross, St. Joseph County Chapter
  12. Alcohol and Addictions Resource Center
  13. The Rhema Project
  14. The Rotary Club of South Bend
  15. Near Northwest Neighborhood, Inc.
  16. Fishing Abilities, Inc.
  17. Public Education Foundation, Inc.
  18. St. Joseph County Bridges Out of Poverty Initiative
  19. Neighborhood Resources Corporation

Force for Good update

Posted on August 5, 2011 by ddefreeuw

Well, we are at the end of the first week of nominations in our Force for Good non-profit awareness contest! Last I checked, we had 16 nominations. Actually, there were many nominations, but a fair number were duplicates. You non-profits have a lot of fans!

I have been reading the acceptance write ups from the organizations as they come in, and I have to say I am so happy to NOT have to make the final decision! The descriptions of the passion they have for their cause, and why they feel they deserve the award, almost always brings me to tears.

We look forward to more nominations and eventually helping a worthy cause make the world a better place. You've heard it said, it is in giving, that we receive - I believe that is true.