I’ve Got the Voice, so How do I Get People to Listen?

Concepts like “tough”, “hard”, and “difficult” are incredibly subjective. What one person sees as a hurdle, is, to another, just a small stone on an otherwise flat path. It takes many different tools in your belt to succeed in Voice Over. For starters, another common term for the career is Voice Actor because the main skill in the field is just that: Acting. Outside of the physical ability to voice act, you also need to have some knowledge in audio editing and technical set up. What mic do you use, and how do you soundproof a space? What interface works best, and what software are you comfortable editing in? Whether you find the acting or technology easier, the beauty of these areas is that they can be taught.

Something more difficult that seems to be a universal struggle is the ability to connect. Getting your booth set up for a reasonable price, while not easy, can be achieved in a step by step sort of way. There are a plethora of coaches (plug your coaching?) who can guide your ability to interpret script. Once you can physically start voice acting, however, how do you get in front of a client? How do you effectively and efficiently say “Here I am, HIRE ME!”? In all my years as a talent, coach, and student, marketing yourself has been the one area I find many people, myself included, struggling in.

I am by no means an expert in marketing. I got my start in radio and fell in love, primarily, with sound design. I’m a tech guy through and through who also has a passion for acting. Voice over was just the obvious choice. While I may not have studied marketing and sales academically, I have built a booming VoiceOver career for myself by learning how to connect with others. As such, there are many ways to market yourself:

  • Email: This refers to finding the email addresses of different businesses, production companies, or stations, and  directly marketing yourself to them via email. The easiest way to find addresses is by using a search engine like Google. Spend a few days or weeks creating a spreadsheet with names, addresses, phone number, social media profiles, and any other information you think would be useful for making contact and starting a genuine conversation.
  • Social Media: Having a consistent presence on platforms such as Twitter, linkedIn, and Instagram, can really elevate your chance of being seen by a potential client. Don’t be intimidated by what to post. People use social media to make connections and share their lives. Share your everyday moments and start following some individual people from companies you want to work for. See if you have any common interests. That is a perfect way to start a conversation with someone.
  • Cold Calling: Like with the emails, this works in the same way. Instead of email addresses, you will find phone numbers and market directly via phone call. This method is especially effective in small, local markets. Want to become the voice of your town? Go to networking events, get some business cards, and become a face in your community.

The most important thing to remember when dealing with potential clients is to ALWAYS frame your interactions as an act of service. What can you do for them? What problem can you help solve? What is a need they have that only your skillset can provide? If there is one thing you take away from this blog, remember that being helpful and kind is the key to creating and maintaining lasting relationships.

One helpful tip I like to utilize when direct marketing is to sound busy. This can especially be useful when reaching out to established clients you may have not heard from in a while. Try utilizing verbiage like, “Hey! I’m between projects right now, so I wanted to reach out and see if there was anything I could help you with”. This method reminds them you are available, booking consistently, and still very eager to work with them while making the conversation about how you can be of help to them.

One more thing to consider is where you are at in your career. If you are in the earlier stages, you may find yourself needing to market constantly. I recommend, at the very least, 10 interactions a day to aid in forming a foundation.

One more thing to consider is where you are at in your career. If you are in the earlier stages, you may find yourself needing to market constantly. I recommend, at the very least, 10 interactions a day to aid in forming a foundation.

In some later stages, you probably have a way to ensure your income and have already formed lasting relationships. In this case, try diving head-first into your social media. Post about jobs and your life. You could start sharing content from clients you work with and getting to know more people on an individual level.

At the end of the day, if you want to make your voice over career take off, marketing is not something you can avoid. Because it is the most crucial part of building your business, take some time to ponder what works for you. If you have to do it, pick a method that makes the task at least bearable, and decide how much time you can give. Make sure you have a proper demo, follow businesses on social media, and always remember to think about what it is you can do for a potential client.