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Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Should You Hire One- or More Voiceover Talents for Audiobooks?

There are a lot of audiobooks on the market, but not all are frequent downloads.  In fact, only a small percentage of authors will see real success in the audio book market.  The rest will be lucky to make a little money after paying for the related expenses.  There are a number of factors that can determine whether or not an audio book is successful.  These include, of course, the status of the author, the topic of the book, and the marketing skills of the author and those working for him or her.  There is one other, big factor to consider though – the quality of the voiceover work. 

Many, many times, customers will completely pass by an audio book or buy it only to immediately “return” it because the voiceover work is not appealing to them. Most people know what it is like to listen to awkward audio.  It could be just the tone or the pitch of the voice that is troubling to the listener.  It could be that the voiceover artist has a tendency to sound monotone after reading for a period of time.  Or, it could be that the story is too hard to follow before there is only one voice and multiple characters in the book.

All of these situations can be very frustrating for the author, but all are preventable.  For the sake of this article, let us consider the latter – the need for multiple voices.  This can be managed in two ways:

#1. Hiring Multiple Voiceover Artists: They can work together in the same recording studio or all make their recordings separately, to have them digitally combined later.  Either way, you wind up with a distinct voice for each character.  For novels that feature many characters, this can be a good way to go, because it really can be difficult for a single voice actor to manage all of the voices while ensuring that the lister can discern one from another.

#2. Have One Artist that Can Speak in Many Voices There are many voiceover talents that can seemly transition from one style of speaking to another, allowing them to give a distinct voice to each of the characters in the book.

It is also possible to combine these methods.  For instance, some authors choose to hire both a female- and a male voiceover artist.  The female speaks for all female characters, while the male manages all masculine parts.  So, the answer to the initial question is “no” because there are multiple methods of managing the problem.  You don’t have to hire more than one voiceover talent, but you may want to consider it, if you think it will provide a more enjoyable listening experience for the consumer.

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