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Monday, February 15, 2016

Can you Handle the Competition?

There’s no denying that competition in the voice over industry has reached unprecedented levels. Right now, casting directors and talent agents have hundreds of thousands of voice actors in their databases, all competing for the same jobs. It begs an interesting question - has supply finally outweighed demand in voice over? And more importantly, what can YOU do as an actor to be in demand and keep landing gigs?

Let’s start with the first question, about whether or not the supply of voice over actors has outweighed demand for this kind of work. There’s no simple answer here. Yes, there are LOTS of actors out there looking for VO jobs, and no, they’re not all going to get them. So I suppose, in a sense, one could postulate that, yes, supply has outpaced demand in this industry.

HOWEVER...the demand for voice over work is still very high. More and more folks are turning to voice actors for help with video game scripts, audiobooks, e-learning, marketing videos, etc. There is a lot of work out there to be found! The trick is in not only locating those jobs, but in making yourself the top candidate for them. So here’s Question #2 - how does one do that and become an “in demand” voice talent?

There are a few different ways to get your name and voice out there above the competition, and the key is in finding just the right mix of strategies. The ones I recommended are:

     Marketing through technology - Having a strong web presence is one of the best ways to get noticed. You need a good website, along with active social media accounts. Interact with people as much as possible, as having a large following or lots of “likes” on your posts looks good to potential clients. But try to aim for "high quality" LIKES.
     Old school marketing - We may be fully in the digital age now, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t employee some old school marketing tactics. Set up face to face meetings with potential clients, make a few cold calls, heck - take out an ad in your local paper! Send out postcards and thank you notes.You never know what may come of these strategies.
     Good old fashioned networking - In this industry, it’s a lot about who you know, so much of your marketing plan should be focused on networking. Get to know as many people in the industry as you can, and at all different levels and positions. The more people you know, the more likely you’ll be to hear about interesting gigs or even be recommended for them.
     Stand out and be different - Don’t be afraid to be unique. Your personality is what people are really going to remember, so be yourself, be confident, and remember that you have a unique gift. Spend less time worrying about the overall competition out there and more time developing your "signature" sound... your "money voice." And adjust your marketing to target only those areas that are receptive to your sound.

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