When talking on the phone or over the internet, sometimes it's necessary to spell a word or name. You need to be able to say the names of the letters used to write the word or name (if spelling a Chinese name, that means you need to give the letters of the pinyin). This is especially important when you're saying a name the other person might not be familiar with, for example telling a surname or address from a language they don't speak, like a Chinese name for a foreigner.
Here's how I'd spell my name.
But the names of the letters are very short and many are quite similar to each other. So sometimes the person listening on the phone or over the internet cannot hear them properly, especially if there's a bad connection or it's noisy.
To avoid confusion & mistakes, it's common to add another word or name that begins with that letter.
You can use the following structure.
Here's how I could spell my name to make it extra clear exactly what the letters are.
You can use any word or name (although it's better not to use ones that will be difficult for the listener, or that are too short). But there are also standard systems for the choice of word, called spelling alphabets.
The most common is the ICAO (or NATO) spelling alphabet. Here's a table showing the letters and the word to represent each letter.
Using the ICAO alphabet, I'd say:
Here's a useful website where you can type in a word or name and it gives you the spellin in ICAO spelling alphabet.
So remember, when spelling your name, address or other word on the phone, try using a spelling alphabet to make it very clear and to avoid problems.
Here are some useful articles for our Marketing class on Product Launch / Commercialization and Promotion, the final step of the NPD (New Product Development) process.
The promotional mix
Update 2017-03-03: All ESLPod.com links changed to Lizhi.fm. For more info, see this post: ESLPod Links Broken. Added BBC naming podcast.
Update:2016-08-13: Added ESLPod 1228.
Here are some podcasts on developing, launching and presenting new products or services. Useful for our classes on:
Overview of New Product Development (NPD)
Launching, Promoting & Presenting New Products
Here are some materials on conducting interviews and types of questions to ask. This can be useful for
our classes on:
All kinds of interviews
Additional ways of assessing job candidates
Types of questions
The different kinds of questions and their purposes, advantages and disadvantages. Open, closed, leading, hypothetical, funnel/filter etc. Useful for those who will give the interview or make the questionnaire.
Update 2018-01-24: Removed dead About.com video links. 2017-05-16: Changed ESL Pod links to Lizhi.fm.
G.A.L.E.S.L. / joe3
Some tips and links on learning English.