At suchavoice.com, we work with a lot of people just entering the voice over business. As you can likely imagine, we often hear the question, “How can I get that first paid voice over gig?”
When a beginning voice over professional is just getting started in the business, any work seems like good work. Many overly anxious talents will even shortchange themselves just for an excuse to get behind the microphone on a real gig. Some go so far as to offer to do the work for free just for an opportunity to be hired and heard.
To create a viable, sustainable, and profitable voice over business, though, the voice over actor will need to begin charging market rate fees. To keep the work coming in, the talent will need to begin cultivating relationships with potential clients that make voice over projects more consistent and automatic. Success requires the execution of a well put together business plan.
At suchavoice.com, we pride ourselves not only in our top notch technical training and professional demo production but also in our business acumen as it relates to voice over. Many of our students, have come back to tell us that it was the business skills they learned that made the difference for getting that first job.
Business planning, though, doesn’t seem to be very popular among aspiring voice over talents. After all, when an aspiring talent imagines him or herself doing voice overs for a living, they picture microphones and studios, not business contracts and emails.
What attracts voice over talents to the industry is the opportunity to contribute an artistic expression to a fun project. To get there, however, will require some business skills as well as vocal talent.
Another challenge is the overwhelming number of marketing strategies available. The many tactics, resources, and tools to build a voice over business come in all shapes and sizes. There are websites, blogs, social media outlets, pay to play sites, agents, networking groups, and one can easily become inundated with all the different marketing options alone.
Popular or not, a well-executed business plan is a must for the serious voice over talent. After all, the best voice over talent rarely gets the gig. The best marketer typically does.
So what is the best way to get started?
First, we need to keep it simple. Action creates results, and planning can quickly become procrastination, so simple planning and massive action paired together work best. There are many fantastic tools to use in building a voice over business, but none reign superior to a simple telephone. Let’s start there. Here’s a tested and proven strategy for getting that first gig quickly.
- First, build a simple, but professional looking website. Make it pretty. Put your demos on it. Time invested (3-5 hours). A personal website is a standard component of the suchavoice.com training, by the way.
- Second, make a list. This means a list of production studios, ad agencies, publishers, and any other entities that hire or have hired voice over professionals in the past. Build that list to 200 prospects to start. Time invested (4-6 hours). If you’re new to voice over, you can receive a one-time strategy session to help you prepare for this process by clicking here.
- Make a phone call. This means a call to the people on the list. Calling your mother to invite her to listen to your demos doesn’t count. You must call REAL prospects. Time Invested (10-20 hours) Schedule a strategy session here for guidance on how to use the phone to connect with potential talents.
This simple three step plan is just a start, but it’s a powerful one. It requires only a small learning curve and it’s the most likely way to ensure early and sustained success. If you’re looking for more tips and strategies to help launch your career, consider getting in touch with Suchavoice.com. It’s a great way to get coaching, mentoring, mastermind groups, ongoing biweekly training, webinars, a robust membership website with videos and training resources, and much more.
Now go get that first gig!
Lonny Hogan is a marketing and business development expert, working directly with Such A Voice to grow the brand.