There are a couple of things that can propel you into the vast world of VO that many of our coaches (who are all voice actors and were once in your shoes) have suggested.
- Throw your ego out the door because there’s always room for improvement. Ok, keep your ego intact because you need it for your self-confidence (which is a must in the VO industry) but don’t assume because you’ve taken a few workshops that you have the chops now. You need to train and practice on a regular basis, just like an athlete, just like a musician, just like a professional chef. Beyonce didn’t make it to the top and then just stop and let the fruits of her labor work for her. She still practices, rehearses and continues perfecting it all. Laying down some cash for proper voice-over training with coaches may feel costly at the time, but you have to consider that those sessions will pay for themselves after you’ve had a few job offers, which ideally you will if you keep working on improving your skills. A voice coach will take you out of your comfort zone and help you to grow as a voice actor in ways that you wouldn’t otherwise on your own. The best part of working with a coach is that it’s fun!
- Make it happen, don’t wait for it to happen. Well, there’s some waiting involved after you submit auditions of course, but I’m talking about being proactive and sharing your enthusiasm for your new career endeavors with everyone. The more people who know you’re getting into voice acting, the more likely you are to find work. Networking is huge and although you may cringe at the idea of it, again, it’s a step outside your comfort zone which can potentially bring results. This can also mean getting your business cards made, launching your website, your business Facebook page, and your LinkedIn profile. It means cold calls and emailing prospective clients. Prepare yourself for rejection and take it with a grain of salt when it happens. Remember that a rejection doesn’t mean you don’t have talent, it means you didn’t fit the voice description of what the client had in mind.
- Setting realistic goals helps you with time management. It can feel overwhelming to embark on a voice acting career. If you’re anything like me when you feel overwhelmed you shut down and don’t accomplish anything except accumulating a YouTube history of funny cat videos. Now as entertaining as that is, it’s not going to bring you anything but guilt later on for not getting anything done. So, set goals for yourself and I’m talking realistic goals. Not goals like- Send auditions this week. No, that’s too broad and too vague. Get detailed with your goals and ask someone to hold you accountable. This could be the voice-over coach that you’ve invested in. Setting goals will ideally teach you how to organize your time as well. What helps me is to use my Google calendar as my guiding light. I write my goals into the time and day slots that I want to get them done. When I do that, I usually achieve said goals. If I just think it and assume I’ll get it done, it doesn’t happen. In that case, what gets done is more accumulation of cat videos. With setting goals and practical organization of your time, it can be helpful to create a routine for yourself so that you’re dedicating a set amount of hours each day to starting your voice acting career.
- A professional demo and high-quality equipment are key. I cannot stress enough how important a professional demo is. Imagine you’re interviewing someone for a job and they show up in ripped jeans with their hair askew. Would you hire that person based on your first impression? Unless it’s for a heavy metal music booking company, probably not. Your demo is your prospective client’s first impression of you. If there’s background noise or the sound is muffled or you’re popping your p’s too much, that’s going to reflect poorly on you and what the client assumes your capabilities are. Get into a studio with a producer and director so that you can take advantage of their expertise. Don’t forget that we can help you with that too!
If after reading this article, you’re still feeling apprehensive and not jazzed enough, here are some books that I recommend to get you off your tush and into the world of voice acting!
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We also provide more tips about how to get started with your voice acting career on our YouTube channel. We even have a video for this post, so you can hear the blog author, Bekka Burton, in action. Check it out below:
About the Author
Bekka Burton is a copywriter, scriptwriter and copy editor at Such A Voice. She’s also an English Language teacher forcing fun grammar activities onto unsuspecting students in Barcelona, Spain. She’s currently studying an online Diploma course for Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from Trinity College in London and will be pursuing a Master’s in Linguistics in Fall 2018. When she’s not studying, writing, editing or teaching, she’s sure to be found hiking mountains, reading books, and eating her way through many European cities.