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You know, its hell when you're sick and when you lose your voice like I did this past week, it's hell especially if you are a marketer.

But how many of us occasionally lose our marketing voice?. Look at companies like Caldor, Montgomery Wards, Woolworth and other big box retailers that have lost their voice. They just didn't know how to talk to their customer about satisfying their customers changing needs. More recently, GM and Chrysler lost their voice and we all know what happened to them.

The voice, as I call it is our marketing mantra; it is who we are, it is how we communicate; it is the tone we set. It is the trust we have built.

If you are not reacting to your customers needs, they won't hear your voice. Here is an example. To us, a short season bowling league may be 12 to 24 weeks, but to today's open play bowler who may want some more competition and camaraderie that league bowling offers, their idea of a short season is 6 to 8 weeks. You may not like to hear that, but that's what they are saying. And they are also saying they only want to do this once a month or every other week. What's our voice going to be? Will it be "yes we hear you, but you can only have a 12 week or 16 week product because well, gee, its easier for us and besides you'll really like it?" Or are we going to say "We hear you and well, gee, we have a dynamite short season adult child program on a weekend day (when they want to bowl)that you are just going to love?"

Get your message strong in January; its the best time to start short season programs and the best time for our customers to hear our marketing "voice".

And take your Tami Flu.

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