Give Us The Word

During the past decade, opportunities to utilize professional voice recordings for business applications have been augmented by advances in technology and telephony.  The need for custom announcements for VoIP menus, cell phone greetings, Internet audio, Flash presentations, tutorials, virtual tours and video has fueled unprecedented growth in voice talent production.

Most production and audio marketing companies invite clients to describe just how they’d like their scripts recorded, and voice talents prefer directorial input as a guide to their “performance”.  Without specific direction, a veteran talent will interpret a script on the basis of content and usage.  If the project is geared toward a corporate audience, and the copy is technical or austere in nature, then the voice talent will be sure to “voice” the material in a tone that matches the script and context.  However, if the client has a specific notion about just how they’d like their message delivered, then that expectation should be conveyed to the scriptwriter, producer and most importantly, the voice talent. 

Choosing descriptive words that accurately reflect the desired mood, style and pacing of a read is an important step towards achieving a productive result.  For example, a Message-On-Hold narration for a hospital would be read very differently than one for a resort.  Words like “caring” and “concerned” apply to the former, whereas “enthusiastic” and “fun” are appropriate for the latter.  Other words that serve voice talents in their performances include: “authoritative”, “casual”, “upbeat”, “corporate”, “conversational”, “friendly”, “relaxed”, “seductive”, “expressive”, “instructional”, etc.

So if you would like the voice on your company phone system, Flash presentation, or web tutorial to match the voice you hear in your head, put on your “director’s hat” and include a few choice adjectives for the talent. 

Labor Day

HOLDCOM will be closed Monday, September 6th in observance of the Labor Day holiday.   If you need to update your Message On Hold program or have any special recordings done to let your clients know about your holiday hours, be sure to speak with a Client Relations representative today.  From all of us, we wish you a safe and Happy Labor Day!

New 855 Toll Free Exchange Coming Soon

855 toll free #

Beginning October 1, 2010, the new 855 toll free exchange will debut in the United States.

If you are seeking a vanity number for your business, now is the time to reserve the best toll free vanity numbers before they are all gone.

It seemed back in the 80s and 90s toll free numbers were popping up everywhere.  Now with the proliferation of flat rate/nationwide/unlimited calling, the need for toll free numbers may not seem as evident.  However, toll free numbers are still a great enhancement to customer service and advertising initiatives.   A toll free number, much like a Custom Message-On-Hold program enhances a company’s image and makes smaller organization appear much larger.

If you’d like to get a vanity Toll Free number contact your HOLDCOM representative who will put you in touch with one of our partners who specialize in toll free numbers or email us at newsletter@holdcom.com.

Eco Feature: Green Tips for Summer

Think Green (recycling symbol)

Summer may be flying by and thoughts are turning towards Back To School, but there’s still plenty of warm weather and sunshine ahead.  Combat the heat and all that comes with it, by following some of our helpful Green Tips for Summer.

One of the biggest reminders of summer is the pesky bite of a mosquito.  Mosquitoes are attracted to darker colors and warmer bodies and can bite through tight-fitting fabrics. So be sure to wear light colors and loose fits.

You can fight off insect invaders without harsh chemicals.  Bug sprays containing chemicals can be bad for your health and the environment. Opt instead for a natural repellent like lemon eucalyptus or try hanging a dryer sheet in your pocket or tuck in your shoes.

Did you know electric fans use 90 percent less energy than central air conditioning, and Energy Star-rated ceiling fans are 50 percent more efficient than conventional fan/light units.

Try using a window fan or attic fan to draw in cooler outside air in the evenings when the sun goes down.  During the day, close your windows and use dark shades to block out heat and keep in the cool air.

Sun with shades

Sunglasses that provide 99-100% of UVA and UVB protection greatly reduce sun exposure that can lead to cataracts and other eye damage. Be sure to check the label when buying sunglasses to make sure they have proper UV protection.

Did you know the sun’s UV rays are strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Stay clear of the midday sun as much as possible. If you’re spending the day at the beach, bring along a beach umbrella during those hours when the sun’s rays are most intense.

Compact the sun and dress appropriately. Wear light, long-sleeved shirts and ankle-length pants if you’re going to be out in the sun for long periods of time. A wide brimmed hat will provide protection for your face, neck, ears and eyes.

Millions of gallons of water are used in gardens and lawns each year. Here are some ways to cut back on the amount of water you use in the garden and lawn:

  • Adjust your lawn mower to a higher setting. Longer grass retains water better
  • Collect and use rainwater for watering your garden
  • Direct downspouts or gutters toward shrubs or trees
  • Install a drip irrigation system around your trees and shrubs to water more efficiently
  • Water in the early morning, when temperatures are cooler, to minimize evaporation
  • Check your sprinkler system regularly and adjust sprinklers so only your lawn is watered and not the house, sidewalk, or street

If you have any other summertime tips to share, please comment and share your thoughts or email us at newsletter@holdcom.com

Left-Handers Have Rights

(black) left handIf you’re left-handed, be proud of it on August 13th.  In 1992, Left Handed Day was launched as an annual event to celebrate lefties’ “sinistrality”* and increase public awareness about the pros and cons of being left-handed.

Here’s some Left Handed Facts and Trivia:

  • Sinistrophobia is the fear of left-handedness or things on the left side.
  • Lefties are also called “southpaws”. The term was coined in baseball to describe a left handed pitcher.
  • Only about 10% of the population is left handed.
  • During the 1600s people thought left handers were witches and warlocks.
  • International Left Hander’s Day was first celebrated on August 13, 1976. It was started by Lefthander’s International.
  • Bart Simpson, Marilyn Monroe, Jimi Hendrix and Leonardo da Vinci are/were all Left Handed!
  • Holdcom President Neil Fishman is left-handed AND celebrates his birthday on August 13th as well.

*defined as the preference towards left handed-ness

App of the Month – Calorie Counter

Apps

If you’re like me, you want to trim a few pounds but you just can’t seem to find the time or energy to get started.  Or you find every excuse why NOT to do it – “I don’t have time to count the calories or points”.  “I eat out a lot, so it’s difficult to know what I should eat”.

Well, you’ll be happy to learn about Calorie Counter by FatSecret.  This handy app is available for Apple and Android products and has a companion website which it syncs to.

calorie counter logo
From searching restaurant menus, to an actual bar code scanner, you’ll quickly and easily be able to find nutritional information about what you are eating.  The website also has enhanced features as well as forums, recipes and more.

Jump start your diet today with Calorie Counter.

E-Training Scripting Ideas

Audio Marketing extends beyond the phone.  Make your e-training stand out and resonate more with your audience with professional audio.  Studies show adding professional narrations to your projects will increase stickiness.  If you have a training project or are thinking of developing one, here are a few tips to help you make it great.

Understand your objective.  Is the purpose of your e-training application to teach customers how to effectively use your product or service?  Are you preparing new employees to handle typical on-the-job problems?  Whatever your main objective, keep that the focus of your script and don’t veer off onto unnecessary tangents.

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