I am a Voice Consultant who primarily works with clients in the Deep South region (South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama). The Deep South is rich in culture, history, and hospitality. Like almost every other portion of the U.S., the Deep South has an accent.
Accents, or sociolinguistics, are a part of our daily lives, no matter where you are in the world. The allurement to a new accent can be an exciting interaction, or the comfort of hearing a familiar accent a piece of home.
The question is, what do you want to hear when you’re placed on-hold during a phone call – an accent that sounds like one of your friends chatting it up or a foreign accent that’s new and fresh? I have a variety of clients with a myriad of preferences – quite a few of my spas like a British accent, whereas my hardware stores like a southern accent. Then, I have doctors’ offices that prefer a Midwestern accent. This is, of course, also dependent on the target audience of the client, but it’s an interesting case in point to look at how people react to different accents and tones of voice.
Being on-hold is usually a mindless period of waiting –nobody likes to wait on hold. So, as a Voice Consultant, you have to ask these questions: Do you want a Voice talent style that’s going to relax your caller and assure them that you will return to the line shortly, or do you want someone who’s going to catch their attention and attract them to your message?
I never thought this much went into on-hold messaging until I became a Voice Consultant. Marketing is a black hole – when it comes to an end, there isn’t one. But that’s what makes it so exciting to work in this industry.
– Submitted by Lindsay Lewis, Voice