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Tuesday, April 9, 2019

How to Find New Gigs for TV Voice Over

Starting in any new profession is not a walk in the park, especially one as competitive as voice over (VO) work. You need to invest quite a bit of time, money, and resources in the early stages to gain a foothold in the field.

Even after you have received training and created your studio, you may find yourself without any work.

This process is how you learn a critical fact about this work: if you want to make money from your voice-over, you have to hunt for new clients on your own.

Look at Local Businesses

Most firms these days run ads of some sort on TV, radio, and internet. Look for local enterprises in your neighborhood who invest in regular video and audio campaigns. If they do have some ad campaigns, check out the quality of the voice over-employed. I voice a ton of corporate videos each month. They all utilize video!

If you feel that you can do a better job on that TV voice-over, feel free to boldly state that to the company. You never know, it might lead to new chances in the future.

Finding TV Voice Over Gigs on LinkedIn

If local networking is not doing it for you, it may be time to go the national or international level with your hunt for attractive VO partnerships and gigs. Also, LinkedIn is the perfect platform to meet producers and other executives who take their job very seriously.

Just remember to create a new, reliable profile/resume on the site. You can then use the search function to check out promising clients for gigs that pique your interest, like my gigs for cowboy voice over. 

Find Folks Who Need Your Skills on YouTube

YouTube is home to millions and millions of live videos. Not all content creators on the platform have a good grip on the audio and voice over aspects of their content. You can use the search tab to find accounts and videos in your favorite niche.

Find out those that could use your assistance. If they are active uploaders, approach them with your demo reel and angle for some roles - although this method might be a bit of a hit and miss when it comes to guaranteeing you a supply of new clients.

Use Google to Find New Gigs

Smart search features on Google allow you to narrow down your search to find possible matches faster. If you like cowboy-related projects, you can easily search for cowboy voice over for some hopeful leads.

Thursday, April 4, 2019

The Right Way to Do Email Marketing as an American Voice Actor

Every serious voice-over (VO) business requires a solid marketing strategy. Email mass marketing is a very valuable tactic found inside the savvy modern marketing playbook.

Crafting and sending emails to potential clients is a relatively simple job. The real work comes after you submit the mail. If you want to improve the prospects of your character voice business, read on to learn more.

Track Customer Data Using CRM

CRM, or Customer Relationship Management, is a system used by businesses to keep track of client information, potential leads, and other vital details. If you are an American voice actor looking to grow the business, having a CRM system can make a world of difference.

In the VO business, clients often return months or years after you send an email to them or work with them. A CRM system allows you to respond quickly when a client messages you out of the blue with an offer for work.

Use Mailing Lists for Clients Interested in Your Character Voice

Once a client sends a reply to your cold marketing email, it's time to add them to an exclusive mailing list. The very fact that they took the time out to respond to your email indicates that they are interested in working with your character voice.

You can use database software like Excel to create mailing lists of all your clients. It might be a good idea to have separate lists for clients, leads, and prospects. Use the CRM system to flesh out your mailing list with more info about your customers and clients. I've created quite an accurate email list of my connections on LinkedIn.

Connect with Interested Clients on Social Media

The final step of the email marketing strategy is to migrate the conversation to an open channel like a social media platform. This way, you will have multiple modes of connecting with your client. Also, you will also become more visible to them, increasing your chances of getting a project. Adding a human element with casual conversation to your client search.

For business connections and networking, LinkedIn is hands down the best choice for an American Voice actor. However, if you are an avid Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram user, you can utilize these as well to connect with your clients.

Ultimately, your choice of platform does not matter. Once you connect with the clients, you've already strengthened your relationship with them while also contributing to your overall social media game.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Myth vs. Fact in the Voiceover Business

Like pretty much any other career choice in life, people tend to have certain preconceived notions about working in the voiceover business.

While a few of these are correct, many others have no basis in reality. Here are four or five common notions about the VO business that you need to be aware of if you plan to carve out a career or even work in part time as a voice talent or voice actor.

You Can Only Do Voiceover if You Have a Great Voice - False

This belief is like saying that to be a great guitarist (or a pianist) you need the very best guitar (or grand piano).

Beethoven or Jimi Hendrix would be able to make great music whether they had a standard instrument or an expensive master-crafted design. The same principle is also applicable to the voiceover.

If you have a great voice, that does indeed help. However, the real magic comes from how you deliver that voice, and how you make that emotional pull with your audience from the natural sound you have already possess. 

Talent is All You Need in This Business, and Classes are Overrated - False

The explanation to this is a continuation of the logic in the point above. The greatest actors and musicians all had some raw talent in them. However, nearly all of them attained greatness by working on it and taking guidance from sagacious teachers.

This principle is valid in the voiceover business as well. It would help if you had practice and an understanding of the necessary skill set involved, and that comes from classes, workshops, conferences and by simply reading from the wealth of books/material available written by working professionals.

In Voiceover You Have to Know Accents and Weird Voices - Partially True

The bit about weird and funny sounds is valid when it comes to projects like animation, cartoons, and comedy. Those often require VO talents to deliver outlandish sounds and voices.

However, that is more of a niche, and regular voiceover work requires you to have a normal voice over sound. I believe just about all voice actors should be able to manipulate their voices enough to extend their range. For instance, one of my most popular sounds is a Southern, Western or Cowboy accent. Although, I was not born in the South my voice has a natural affinity for this sound. (And it's in my blood) All voice actors should work to create derivations from the "root" sound of their voice to use in a very natural way when called upon to do so. If you become good enough at that, you can fulfill the client's job of having a few other talent on the same script, satisfy the client's need for various characters and adjust your payment figure accordingly. 

You Can Do Voiceover from Home - Partially True

If freelancing is all you plan to do in this field, you can harness the power of the internet and work from any part of the world.

At the present time, most of the movie and animation work is centered around NYC and LA, but is changing for certain projects when there is a need for supplemental voices.  And , of course, anytime you have the opportunity to work in a "live" session in another studio it will be super rewarding, fun and career boosting. Especially if you are working amongst a group if good voice actors.