Don LaFontaine, one of the most prolific voice over artists ever, died Monday. You knew him as the guy who did voice-overs for countless movies and television trailors like “24”, “Terminator 2”, and “The Simpsons Movie.”
He hadÂ sound so distinctive and sought after thatÂ he was referred toÂ as the “voice ofÂ God.”Â But as speakers, we can also learn from his wonderful ability to put inflection in everything heÂ said.Â His voice was never flat, but rode up and down like a roller coaster, making everything he said sound interesting and exciting.
And listen to his voice on the famous Geico television advertisement. When watching the ad, notice two things. First, notice the flat voice from the Geico customer. It’s the typical monotone that so many people in business use when speaking in presentations. Then notice how LaFontaine ads drama by making his voice go up and down, punctuating certain words for emphasis.Â The dramatic music helps too.Â
We can’t all have LaFontaine’s deep baritone voice. But we can all learn to speak with lots of expression.