There’s not a lot that keeps me up at night, but sometimes when I think about how the voice over industry has changed since I first started, I’m up a little later than I want to be. Obviously, things change, and I know that. But sometimes change is stressful and even scary, and one area that makes me a little nervous is how oversaturated VO has become. There are SO MANY actors out there now, and the competition is fierce. So what’s an artist to do?
Well, I’ve spent a lot of time turning this over in my mind, and I keep coming to the same conclusions. If you want to stay fresh and unique, you’ve got to do a few things, actually. Here’s what I try to do:
● Stay up to date with technology. I am not a tech person by nature; never have been, never will be. BUT I do my absolute best to stay on top of the latest updates in this area, because it is at the foundation of every part of voice over. Whether I’m recording, editing, or doing managerial tasks, technology is behind it. I make efforts all the time to learn new tricks and keep my software updated. Maybe this is less about being unique and more about staying relevant, but regardless, it’s a critical part of being a progressive and in-demand actor in an extremely competitive market.
● Use social media to showcase yourself. Social media is your friend. I repeat, social media is your friend. Even if you’re not a big fan of it, it’s important to use it to your advantage. It’s a great way to introduce yourself and your brand of voice over to the masses, combining both the professional and personal elements that make you YOU. Another reason why social media is so important. Some casting directors actually base their decisions on what they see on these sites, and specifically how many followers or friends you have. Sounds crazy, but it’s true.
● Develop my niche services. I’ve talked before about how important it is to niche yourself as an actor, and continuing to develop your talents in this area is one of the keys to standing out. I’m the “Voice of Americana,” right? But what does that mean? What proof do I have to show this? Working to expand on this is one of my main goals as an artist, and it’s something that I feel helps me stay fresh, unique and clear in people's minds.
● Genuinely love what I’m doing. People can tell when you love your job, and believe me, there are a LOT of actors out there who don’t love theirs. If you’re interested in the results more than the process, that’s going to show through, and it can be a turn-off for some clients. Me? I sincerely love voice over, and I let people know it by always committing to a positive attitude, being eager about every project, and going above and beyond client expectations. And I think that help to set me apart.