5 Best Practices for Casting Voiceover
Even though the Internet has made it possible to connect with voice over talent, that doesn't necessarily mean you know all the ins and outs of the process. And the amount of choices can make finding the right VO overwhelming. Here are 5 tips to keep in mind:
1. Voice123.com is a great place to start. There are a lot of casting sites out there, but few have been around longer or offer as many choices as Voice123. The best part about the site is its transparency-- talent are allowed to freely post their contact information. Unlike other sites like Voices.com, Voice123 doesn't try to get wedged in the middle. Voice talent pay for their membership, you pay the talent. Bang! And with the search tools Voice123 offers, you can quickly narrow down your choices.
2. Speaking of which: Know what you want. Before you start casting, you should have a fairly specific idea of what you want the VO to sound like. Just male or female isn't good enough. Are they friendly? Professional? Maybe a little rasp in their voice.. or do they sound very upbeat? The more you can describe the voice you're looking for, the better the pros can match that sound. So...
3. Get custom reads. Talent in the business today know that auditioning is part of the deal, so they should be more than willing to submit a 30-60 second custom demo. This is also a great way to hear the talent "in the raw." Since the samples on their website could have been produced by a professional engineer, a custom demo lets you know the talent's studio and recording equipment are up to snuff.
4. Wait... They have their own studio, right? For VO professionals, having a full studio set up these days is a must. Simply put, if a talent doesn't have their own gear and a solid command of recording and editing, you may be dealing with the JV squad, so proceed with caution. The same is true for a dedicated website. If you find a VO talent on Voice123 but they don't have their own URL, consider that a red flag. And lastly:
5. Having a microphone does not equal being a pro. The same way Uber and Lyft have disrupted the taxi industry, the world of voice over has been shaken up as well. But while almost everyone can drive a car, not everyone can do VO. Yes: the gig economy enables sites like Fiverr to offer $10 voiceovers, but the adage remains true-- you get what you pay for. If your goal is to have a professional result, don't cut corners. Competitive rates are fine, but a bargain basement mentality will saddle you with a sub-par result most of the time.
Need more help finding the right talent or want a custom read from me? Just get in touch. :)