Real Talk

Your Voice Sucks

2 mins.

Your voice sucks. I’m not sure how I am going to be able to work with that”

Damn. What a statement. I was in my first year of getting a music degree. I had always thought of myself as a decent singer. Definitely not a John Legend, but maybe a John Ordinary…that was a terrible joke. I’m so sorry.

Anyways, I was pretty lost. To make things even worse, that voice teacher passed me off to another voice teacher. She was sweet but a terrible fit for me. One day as I was trudging through lessons with her she pointed something out. She noticed that my voice would change depending on what songs I was singing. It was like I was trying to emulate the artist singing instead of using my own voice. She was right. I thought that’s what you were supposed to do.

Fast forward a year and I am performing an original song for a group of my peers and teachers. I put a lot of heart into this song, especially since it’s a song I wrote for Mikayla (my wife). I actually had Mikayla there with me singing that day. 

I strum the final chord. Let it ring and I allow the stillness to linger for a good 5 seconds. It was dramatic as hell. I am what I am. As soon as I look up I see a lot of my peers holding back tears. But what I noticed the most was my first voice teacher. He was sitting there with tears welling up in his eyes. The same guy who told me my voice sucked. He’s now all choked up. 

I remember him standing up and walking up to me in front of everyone. He looked me in my eye and said, “There it is. That’s your voice.” 

Here I am years later. I’m running a branding agency with Mikayla and one of the many jobs that I do is help brands find their voice. I now understand what my voice teacher was talking about. When companies try to emulate another company's voice, it sucks. Do you know why? Because it’s not their voice. It’s not authentic to them. 

Don’t hear what I’m not saying. You should use another company’s brand voice as inspiration for yours, but you shouldn’t lose yourself in their voice. I promise you, your real brand voice will have a stronger impact on people than the brand voice you are trying to emulate.

This is what we’ve been working on here at Luveaux & Co. For the first couple of years, we were trying to emulate the brand voice of other agencies we admired. We found ourselves using fonts, colors, voice, and imagery that we thought we were supposed to have. We didn’t like any of it, but it’s how we thought we were supposed to look to be successful. To be honest, it was hard to keep this up. Not being authentic is exhausting.

We recently went through a re-brand and our main focus was tapping into who we were. We crushed it. This website that you are on right now is who we are. The words you are reading right now are actual words that we would say if we were talking in person. This is us (not an intentional reference to that tear-inducing show).

Be authentic with your brand voice. Trust me. Your voice is a lot more interesting than the one you may be trying to emulate.


I quietly posted a very rough demo of the song on my SoundCloud a couple of years ago. You can click here to listen to the song.

written by:
Doug Luna

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