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Tips For Being A Voice-Over
Entrepreneur In Any Economy

By Donna Reed
Voice Actor
When you start your own voice-over business, you get to call the shots. That’s one of the reasons you decided to be your own boss.

The other obvious reasons?
  • You do the work you enjoy whenever you want to work, forfeiting the 9 to 5 grind.
  • Plus, even in a down economy, you’re in control, because you own the company.
According to an article by the Wall Street Journal’s Sue Shellenbarger (Plumbing for Joy? Be Your Own Boss):

”Seeking out enjoyable work and finding a way to do it on your own terms, with some control over both the process and the outcome, is likely for most people to fuel satisfaction and contentment.”


So you started your voice-over business and it’s chugging along, making money, staying out of debt.
Then comes the downhill economy. You have your existing customers, and you’re doing all you can to keep them happy.
Yet potential clients may be hesitant to spend any money. So how do you keep the momentum going - no matter what the economy may be saying?

1) Stay flexible.
The reason you freelance/own your own business is so you can set aside some personal priorities, like spending time with family, continuing your education, writing a book or being a spokesperson for something you believe in.
2) Stay in touch with your customers.
Even if you’re not currently working with them, connect with them - offer your services.
3) Continue to take classes.
Network at events - large and small. Get a voice coach if you feel you need one (a good one is well worth the time and money!).
4) Keep marketing to your current, past and potential clients.
Find new ways to market yourself so that customers will benefit.
5) Cut back on expenses.
6) Splurge. Okay, just a little - when you get a new gig, re-up with an exsisting client, or complete a challenging project in the studio.
7) Spend a few hours a week with a charity.
Non-profit agencies are having a tough financial time as well - a few hours from you could mean all the difference, and will give you a new perspective on life outside of the studio. You will benefit from the experience. Trust me.

Need more info on being a savvy business owner? Check out Freelance Folder and Entrepreneur for ideas on growing your company.


Donna Reed is a professional voice-over talent specializing in promos and animation. She is currently the voice for TV news stations and documentaries for the travel industry, and is the author of other published articles about voice-over including Get Yourself Heard. She is also a mom who knows the value of frozen dinners.


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Comments (4)
6/25/2010 at 3:04 PM
Thank you all for your comments. Glad I could help a bit. Always good to put some or all of these practices to work - so to speak! Donna.
Jenny Dixon
6/25/2010 at 11:53 AM
Thanks Donna.
Indeed, being one's own boss is the best! Good to be reminded to take time out from work, too. I know when I first started I didn't make time for anything else but work. Now I schedule my own time first - to maintain mental health and peace at home!!!!

Thanks for the links - very useful.
Bill Brewer
6/25/2010 at 9:13 AM
Great article, Donna! Just what I needed to restart the spark.
BP Smyth, Narrator
6/25/2010 at 1:04 AM
Great advice, Donna. There is NOTHING in this world like being your own boss!! Working for the mediocre is the pits and just expands medirocrity. Thanks for the great article.

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