I have an ear for piano, yet I decided to play the guitar. I can pick up any melody on the piano and start banging the keys and music miraculously fills the air. With the guitar on the other hand, I can play when sheet music is put in front of me. I can learn to play songs, but I can’t play by ear.

I guess that is something to do with the way my brain is wired. I am not the front man, rock star I thought I could be when I first had guitar lessons. I’m more the guy who sits behind the piano, fully integrated into the sounds being made and lost in the full force of the music.
What is the truth in your brand?

I get that way with writing. I’m no Hemingway. I’m more hit and miss Stephen King and sometimes I feel like a drunk, swaggering Hunter S Thompson rambling, yet somehow making sense of importantly poignant issues.  Of course I’m not Thompson either.

And I’m never sure whether I’m making a poignant point or just grandstanding.

Sometimes I wonder what Stephen King would write about if he was writing about marketing: The ghosts of campaigns past, Marketing Misery or More Tales of Unknown Marketing Horror … Needful Things … perhaps.

The one thing I do know is that he’d write in a familiar style and you’d know what to expect.  He might change things up, going from full-blown marketing horrors to more reflective pieces, but there is still a King tone.

I love that tone. It’s like my comforter. If I could create a soft, cuddly blanket out of King’s book covers I would. Then I’d probably be the subject of some twisted tale; my life turned into a freakshow episode of Ripley’s Believe it or Not. The author would be proud.

Tone is so important; in literature, music, film and even in business your tone will make or break you. As business2community.com writes, “Getting tone of voice right is arguably one of the most important things your brand can do. Just look at what we at Stratton Craig call ‘the big three’ – Apple, Innocent and John Lewis. These are the voices and styles that other companies aspire to imitate, precisely because the companies have cemented their brand’s tone so perfectly.”

Hemingway had consistent tone, so too did Thompson and it created a following, an expectation and loyalty. It’s everything that everyone from a business leader to artist aspires to achieve.

When I play guitar these days I still wish that I could have been a rock star. Of course, I know that’s not my tone. I know that sitting at the piano working out David Bowie’s Life on Mars melody is more my bag. That’s my tone and there is no point trying to be that which I am not. Because if there is one thing that I know, it’s that success comes from staying true to who you are.

If I can to indulge in one final music reference, I am Roy Bittan, not Bruce Springsteen.

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Jonathan Jackson

Jonathan Jackson is an experienced editor and writer who has worked in print and digital media for almost 20 years.

Jonathan has edited titles across a range of industries including sports and lifestyle, health, trade and business and finance. Among these titles are Soccer International, Women’s Fitness and Health, Wealth Creator, Think & Grow Rich, Your Trading Edge and Business First of which he is currently the managing editor.

Jonathan has also written two books: Offside - The Wild Side of Soccer and Australia's Wealth Creators.

He is the Media and Content Manager for Marketing Eye.

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