For most people, breaking into the voice over industry is a bit more complicated than recording a demo, sending it off to an agent, and waiting for the jobs to start rolling in. There are a few other steps that most folks need to complete first, and these will usually come at a cost. Now, before you start thinking that you’re going to have to shell out the big bucks to land VO work, keep in mind that the amount you spend on your voice over career is completely up to you. However, there are a few things that are usually worth the money, and skimping on these to save a few bucks probably won’t do you any favors in the long run.
Acting Classes or Voice Coaching
Most voice actors who have found success in the industry have spent a good deal of time in acting classes, taking lessons with a voice coach, or both. That’s because the best VO actors know that you have to train your voice to perform how you want it to – it doesn’t just come naturally for most people. Take the time – and spend the money – to enroll in some classes or lessons with an experienced professional that understands the unique dynamics of voice over work.
Networking and Attending Conferences/Workshops
This is another area that some people balk at due to the costs of traveling or taking time off from their day job. However, attending workshops and conferences is money well spent, because it gives you an ideal time to network with other professionals in the industry. In VO, a lot of it is about who you know – which is kind of the whole point of networking. So do it! And have fun!
No one likes a poor quality website that is difficult to navigate. loads slowly and looks like it was created in 2003. And what happens when someone lands on a page like this? They close it and move on to the next one. Don’t let this happen to you. If you can’t design a high quality website yourself, take on the expense of paying someone to do it for you. Your website will (hopefully) generate a lot of traffic, many of whom are potential employers, so this is money well spent. Make sure that your DEMOS are immediately accessible to visitors. Place them on the landing page. After all, THAT'S what a potential client is really looking for as he/she whizzes through several websites to find the right talent.
Recording EquipmentNow this is where you can end up spending top dollar – or you can look for high quality equipment that won’t cost you a fortune. It’s out there, I promise. When purchasing recording equipment, do your research. I can’t stress this enough – get online, research products, compare prices, and think about what you REALLY need and how it can positively impact your business. Most VO recording work today is done in home studios. Without getting into the technical specifics of home studio recording, start with a high quality microphone and preamp combination that works well with your type of voice. THIS is where you should spend the bulk of your equipment budget. That is, once you've created a completely sound proof/noise proof environment in which to record.