Finding your voice is one of the hardest parts of writing. Style and tone are important. They set the foundation for what your reader will consume. What is voice in writing? What do I mean when I talking about “finding your voice?”
Everyone has their own style of writing. If you do research you engage in a lot of academic writing. Your style is probably formal and grammatically perfect.
This style of writing is hard to translate into copywriting. In copywriting, the tone is informal and the style is usually conversational. The style and tone of writing for an audience who potentially might buy your services are different than academic writing because you’re’ trying to get people to do something in copywriting.
I’m referring to tone, style, and format when talking about finding your writing voice, but the words matter, too. You need to know what kinds of words you do and don’t like to use. Do you like a lot of text in one block or do you break up your writing into small paragraphs? Are bolding and italicizing things you like to do, or do you feel like you’re yelling at your audience?
Finding Your Voice
It’s important to know your voice in every aspect of your life. How do you sound when you’re with your family? What words do you use when talking to your friends? What vocabulary have you adopted when you meet with clients? What is your style and tone of writing?
When it comes to copywriting, no one expects you to do it all yourself. I’ll start this blog off by recommending that if you’re a mental health professional running a business, you should hire a mental health copywriter who writes for therapists and other mental health professionals. Copywriters take your voice and run with it. They write as you. In order to do that, they need to know your voice. Which means you need to know your voice.
Finding your voice as a therapist probably took some time. You figured your therapist voice out while you were in school. It may have taken a few years into your professional career to really find your voice as a therapist. Maybe you’re still developing it.
As you learn your therapist’s voice, you figure out your style of working and the words you use when you talk to clients. You know that the words and tone you use as a therapist are important. The way you talk is a big part of how you present yourself. If you want to be taken seriously as a professional, you need to use words that reflect your knowledge.
You also want to be accessible to your clients. Just like in copywriting, when you’re talking to your clients you don’t use a lot of jargon. You save that for when you’re talking to your therapist friends or writing detailed notes. The way you talk in your notes is certainly not the way you talk in any other part of your life, including your copywriting.
Once you’ve been practicing for a little while, you become familiar with the way you talk as a therapist. You know how to talk to clients. Your demeanor, your tone of voice, and your word choice are a big part of how you present yourself to your clients. You want to be professional but also relatable. A lot of therapists use humor when appropriate. It’s important to know your voice as a therapist.
What Is Voice In Writing?
Voice refers to the style and tone of writing. It refers to the vocabulary you use. Your writing voice determines how you use punctuation, even.
It’s often easier to find your writing voice once you know your therapist’s voice because a lot of therapists write like they talk, or at least their copywriters do. This is why when I write for someone it’s so important to me to talk with them and really get a feel for who they are as a person and as a therapist. What words do they use? Are they more casual or formal when they talk? Do they use a lot of jargon?
If you like to write you can test out different styles of writing until you find the one that makes sense to you. If writing is scary to you, pick a topic that you could write about and record yourself talking about that topic.
Working With a Copywriter
If you don’t know your own voice and style of writing, you can’t expect a copywriter to get it right. If I’m working with a mental health professional who doesn’t know their voice or their brand’s voice, it’s really hard to create something that makes the client happy. They know what they don’t want but can’t tell me what they do want.
I’ve worked with people who were all over the place and confused about what their voice was. I didn’t make them happy when I gave them the copy that I wrote for them because they said “it doesn’t sound like me.” But they weren’t able to tell me what they do sound like. All I have to go off of is what you give me.
Finding your voice as your copywriter is easier the more you know your voice as a therapist. If you know your voice as a writer, too, that’s even better! Often when I start working with someone we find and refine their voice throughout our time working together. It also takes me a little while to nail your voice, so it’s always a collaborative process. But the clearer you are about your style and tone of writing, the easier it is for me to capture it when I work with you.
Hire a Mental Health Copywriter if You’re a Therapist Who Wants to Write
If you’re going to outsource your writing, you need to be both clear on how you want the piece to sound and open to interpretation. Sometimes your copywriter picks up on things you say or the way you say them that you didn’t realize yourself and you learn something new. It’s a good surprise. Many of my clients have told me that it wasn’t until they started working with me that they feel like they really found their voice.
I write for a lot of different mental health professionals, including therapists. Many of my clients are great writers themselves, whether they know it or not. Usually, people come to me because they don’t have time to do their own copywriting. Sometimes, though, I see a lack of confidence in their ability to do their own writing. This is where it can be hard to make sure we’re all on the same page if they don’t know their own voice.
But I specialize in working with therapists and other mental health professionals because I was a therapist. I know the jargon and types of therapies out there. I’ve had to practice finding my own voice as a therapist and as a writer. Now I spend my time finding your voice.
If you’re ready to hire a mental health copywriter to work with you to find your voice, contact me. You can book a free consultation call to discuss how I can help you put your best writing forward in your unique voice.