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A Simple Voice Over Marketing Strategy
That Works: Ask, Show Up, Follow Up

By Randye Kaye
Voice Talent and Coach

Take a look at your last 10 voice over jobs - or, if you are just starting out, think about another business venture you had that was successful, or even your solid friendships. 

You may find that the "secret" to that success is as simple as ASF: 
  • Ask 
  • Show Up
  • Follow Up.
Sales experts talk frequently about "five to seven points of contact"  before we "make a sale" - ooh how I hate that term - so why whine when after one contact we are not hired, especially in a business where the need for our particular service, with our unique sound, has to match at the right time? 

Sure, there is a delicate balance between contacting and pestering, but stay helpful, respectful and patient - and then have faith in the process and in what you have to offer. 


Here is an example: A month ago, I received an email from a local chapter of Ladies Who Launch

Cool name, right? I looked up the concept, and re-read the email. It was an invite to go to the home of the local chapter Managing Director Kathy McShane for a potluck evening. 

Ask: Who? What? I wrote back to Kathy asking for more info. It sounded really interesting: a gathering of local female entrepreneurs, solidifying goals for 2013. So I said yes.

Risk? Sure! I knew none of these people. But for $15 and an entree contribution, I asked myself another important question: Why not? 

Show Up: Chicken dish in hand, I went to the event. What a great group of women! After way too much food, we gathered to share what our businesses were about and what our goals were for 2013.

Who was there? Realtors, garden designers, hot-dog-truck entrepreneurs, Mary Kay managers, insurance salespeople, interior designers - and not one other voice artist. 

When it came time to share what I did, I simply told them all that "It's my business to make your business sound better" - and went on to explain what that meant. Sometimes I play a demo from my SmartPhone, but it didn't feel right here, so I didn't. Still, I received lots of oohs and ahs, as if they'd never heard of a voice talent before. So I was really glad that I showed up. 

Follow Up: Still, that was only one point of contact. Later that week Kathy sent thank-you notes to everyone and (with permissions) shared email addresses.

I waited a few days, and followed up with the group to re-introduce myself, share website info (demos) and offer to help their businesses make that "sound first impression." 

Of the 35 women I contacted, three wrote back to me express interest - and admiration.  I said thanks and asked for permission to add them to my contact/mailing list. They said yes, and now when I follow up with my client/prospect list with an update or newsletter, there will be more points of contact.

And there you go. 


Any bookings out of this yet? No. But there might be. And meanwhile I met a really cool group of women!

As I write this, I am sitting in the broadcast booth at WSHU, an NPR affiliate where I get my occasional radio fix as understudy for the classical music hosts, newscasters, and talk-show announcers.

How did I get this gig? 
  • I asked for a tour after leaving my full-time commercial radio job. 
  • I showed up for the appointment, on time and enthusiastic about the opportunity. 
  • I followed up with a big thank you and willingness to learn as many gigs here as possible. 

So how about my most recent 10 bookings? Here's how mine played out: 
  • One agent booking
  • Two from roster listings or P2P (new, but slightly different process)
  • Two clients who use me monthly - telephone messages, radio imaging
  • Four repeat clients - the backbone of any business!
  • One word-of-mouth referral. 
In this case, there were no brand-new clients, but all of them were, at one time, new to me. 

The relationship began with ASF and continues with the addition of quality work. Cultivate your new clients. Take that risk. It's worth it. 

And by the way, the formula works for friendships, too.
Randye Kaye has over 20 years of experience as a voice talent, stage/TV/film actress, and radio personality, with a long list of major clients, including, Dannon, Kyocera, Big Lots, Burger King, Executone, Continental Airlines, MISTO, Toshiba, Verizon, and many more. She provides a trustworthy and intelligent voice for countless websites, e-learning courses, phone systems, on-hold messages, promos, industrial narrations, audiobooks (children, adults), science/medical/technical instruction, video games, travel/real estate/museum tours, and live events. She is also a voice over coach with Edge Studio in New York City and Connecticut.  


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Comments (7)
Ron Whittemore
2/15/2013 at 12:58 PM
Always good, Randye!!
Jay Lloyd
2/14/2013 at 10:52 PM
Randye...what a VERY simple "de-coding" of the usual marketing lessons. Anyone can understand exactly what you did and how well it worked. The ability to simply illustrate the obvious is a talent in itself, and you certainly have it! I think it was Yankee-great, Mickey Mantle, who, when asked the secret of how to run so fast to first base said, "Picking up your feet and laying 'em down, I guess." What great advice you gave!
Deb Stamp
2/14/2013 at 9:41 PM
Powerful and helpful guidance thru a great personal story....naturally and wonderfully written!
Alan Sklar
2/14/2013 at 5:39 PM
Randye....The Buddhists call what you did...."creating universe."
Reaching out to the local women's group and entering into relationship with them.
And it's so easy, such fun, not grim or exhausting. Yet so many actors that you and I know are reluctant to "create universe."
Roxanne Coyne
2/14/2013 at 9:32 AM
I loved your article, Randye. You have such a wonderful work ethic. You are an inspiration to us all.
Ken Karp
2/14/2013 at 7:11 AM
How true this is.

And how refreshing to read marketing basics discussed without mention of so-called 'social media,' which, to me, is *highly* overrated for effective marketing.

When I was in ad sales, the publisher opened an annual sales meeting with this classic commercial. It goes to Randye's "show up" and "follow up," and holds irrefutable lessons for anyone promoting themselves. Thanks, Randye.
Gene Tognacci
2/14/2013 at 7:08 AM
Thanks Randye
Great post, as always!
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