The following is from the Such A Voice archive, written by Catherine Marshall.
When you’re just getting started in the voice-over industry, we recommend that you let everyone know that you are a “professional voice-over artist.” This title means that you have the professional voice-over technique training, the professionally recorded and mastered demo, and even your own website and business cards (even if you’re still waiting for them to arrive in the mail!). Letting friends, neighbors, and co-workers know that you now do voice-overs is a basic component of networking and getting the word out there.
After all, maybe someone you know is already looking for a voice-over artist for their business.
When it comes to marketing yourself to businesses, however, go about networking a different way. If you tell a business that you are a professional voice-over artist and you would like to work with them, the potential client does not necessarily see how hiring you is going to benefit them. Instead of flaunting your job title and waiting for them to take the bait, think of ways to describe your services and the benefits that you can offer the potential client. Instead of saying, “I’m a professional voice-over artist, and I am wondering if you are in need of a well-trained voice?” try to go with something more along the lines of, “As a professional voice-over artist, I work with businesses to enhance their voicemail system, improve the quality of their corporate training videos, and I can record and produce professional-quality commercial voice-overs for radio or TV.”
By marketing your skills and not your title, the client automatically thinks, “Wow, I might need that for my business.” Another benefit of marketing yourself this way to potential clients is that if you are new to the industry, you can focus on your skills rather than your client list.
However, never give the client the impression (directly or indirectly) that you will deliver more than you actually can! Be confident about your skills, but be honest at the same time. If you have other skills to offer the client, like writing or copy editing, don’t be shy to offer them as well. Clients like to know that they are getting more bang for their buck! Even if the client you are talking to isn’t looking for a voice-over artist at that time, they might know of someone who could benefit from your services – and not your job title!