When you are in the voice over business it is a common question that is asked of you or you may be asking yourself, “What is my signature sound”?
Finding your niche
Just like an actor who you notice is always in comedies, or action movies, they know what genre they fit best in. Finding your voice style, your genres where you can make your voice work best for you and in turn your clients.
If you are unsure about where to start, ask yourself some questions. Keep in mind that there are no right or wrong answers, just your answers.
· Age Range – When you read different characters what age range do they fit in? Can you sound younger or older than your age?
· Sex of the Characters – Can you do the voice of the opposite sex? Or do you stick to male or female-only?
· Traits – Does your voice have a serious tone? Warm? Cheerful? Inviting? Deep? It's about pairing your voice to adjectives that best describe them. Once you have a list of these adjectives, it is easy to translate them into characters and into genres. If you have a serious voice, then non-fiction books, or PSA’s with a seriously important message will be perfect for you.
Do Your Personality and Signature Voice Match?
Your voice over work will often coincide with your interests and personality. If your personality and signature voice matchup, it can be very easy to start working right away. Whereas, some voice-over actors find that they are consistently hired for a niche, that is not what they are naturally drawn to. One way to think of it is as your “alter ego” is your signature voice. Incredibly famous singers often refer to their stage presences as an alter ego.
Multiple Avenues or A Specific Niche
Once you answer some of these questions, you may find that you can transform your voice into several different characters offering you a greater list of opportunities. It is great if you are able to adapt to the job and gives you opportunity to work more. However, narrowing down to a specific niche helps you create your brand and establish a well-known reputation. A brand and reputation that will get you noticed and hired without auditioning if that is the style the client is looking for. Sometimes all you need to do is listen to your clients review of your work. What terminology do they use when they describe your work? What kind of work keeps repeating itself? It may be more obvious than it appears at first. When you hone in on that... make that your signature sound and work to further refine it.
Your Signature Voice is Your Money Maker
Your signature voice is what gets people to hire you, it is your money maker. It tends to be the vocal sound that you deliver on a narration; it is the one that comes most naturally to you. It is the one that you should consider your go-to. While you may have trained and mastered fun cartoon styles, but the voice that is the most natural is the one that is your signature and it is what you will be most hired for.
Discover Your Particular Voice Over Qualities
Finding your signature voice and style may take a while. Don’t worry, the most important thing is to discover your particular voice qualities and sound. There are so many opportunities in the voice-over industry that you will be successful by using what you have. Once you've got a grip on those qualities, keep your focus on that sound and direct your marketing efforts in that direction.