INCOMEWorried About Growing Voice Over
Competition? Get BETTER, Not Angry
By Doug Turkel
It’s becoming a common refrain in all sorts of creative endeavors: some established, experienced talent are complaining about the vast numbers of newcomers to their field.
I’ve heard it from web designers, graphic designers, copywriters, and yes, voice over talent.
In a blog post titled True Professionals Don’t Fear Amateurs, entrepreneur, marketer and author Seth Godin wrote something that resonates deeply within the world of professional voiceover talent:
SO GOES VO ...
He didn’t specifically mention voice over talent in the post, but he might as well have.
In recent years, I’ve heard scores of fellow talent complain about the influx of so-called wannabes.
They’ll bitterly say, "These days, anyone with a laptop and a USB microphone thinks they can call themselves professional talent.” (The technical barriers to building your own studio and recording broadcast quality sound have been lowered significantly in recent years.)
Or they’ll whine, "All they have to do is pay a few hundred dollars to join one of the online voice-casting sites, and they can compete for jobs that I used to book.” (There are now a few sites boasting thousands of paying members who essentially bid for the job of voicing your next project.)
YEAH, BUT ...
While many of these statements seem reasonable, correlation does not equal causation.
Just because someone builds a home recording studio, it doesn’t mean that they are instantly qualified to voice national commercials or network television promos.
Heck, I could fill my garage with some of the best woodworking tools available, and I’d still never be able to properly build even the most basic bookcase.
WHO WINS AUDITIONS?
And just because someone ponies up the cash to join one of the online voice-casting sites – often called "Pay-to-Play” sites or P2Ps – they don’t magically become your competition.
Auditioning for gigs and being good enough to actually book those gigs are two very different things.
Oh, and if the jobs that you used to book are now being posted on the P2P sites, congratulations! It’s time to start ramping up your own marketing and providing your services to clients who want to hire "you,” and not the ones who want to hire "someone with a voice.” There’s a huge difference.
If you need motivation to up your game, consider how Seth ended his post:
Doug Turkel has more than 20 years of experience as a professional voice talent. Branding himself as the "UNnouncer” - as opposed to the brash "Monster Truck” guy - he has "quietly" become the voice behind more than 10,000 spots and several TV networks. His strong roster of clients includes MasterCard, NBC/Telemundo, McDonald’s, The Travel Channel and The Discovery Channel. He is currently the promo voice of the Home Shopping Network. Working from a home studio, he notes that "voice talent who learn to use the tools that the Internet offers can find work anywhere and everywhere."
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