Listen! If You Can't Follow Directions
You Won't Get The Voice Over Job
By Marc Scott
Have you ever heard someone explain the difference between hearing and listening?
According the University of Minnesota, "Hearing simply happens. Listening, however, is something you consciously choose to do.Ē
In other words, thereís a difference!
Recently, I was a voice seeker. And I had a very interesting experience on the other side of the table. Instead of filling the role of voice actor, I had the opportunity to work with a client in casting a voice for a project.
As a talent, Iím used to submitting my audition and then never really knowing what happens next. Unless, of course, I book the job. I donít know what other talent say. I donít hear their demos. I never really know what the competition is like.
But this time I found out. And what I discovered was a little disheartening.
WILL YOU PLEASE LISTEN?
I assisted a client with casting a project. I put the information out to a number of people in my network with very simple instructions:
"If youíre interested in this project please simply reply with your contact info and a link to your demo. The client will then be in touch if theyíre interested.ĒWhat happened next was really surprising! Less than 20% of the talent that responded to my offer actually listened to what I had said.
The responses I got from talent varied from full-out novels to sales pitches and all points in between.
The vast majority of them did not include demos - one of the VERY SIMPLE instructions I included. A couple of them didnít even include requested contact information.
MOST WERE LOSERS
As I mentioned, fewer than 20% of the respondents actually followed the instructions I offered.
Which means that 80% of the respondents got tossed in the trash immediately.
In some ways, having people not listen to and follow simple instructions made my job as the middleman easier. I was able to eliminate a huge portion of the participants pool with one swift and easy step.
On the other hand, it was embarrassing for me to see that many people - who call themselves professional - screw up something as simple as providing contact info and a demo.
LISTEN AND FOLLOW
Itís not enough to hear what your clients are asking for. Youíve got to really listen. Read the instructions thoroughly. Follow them entirely. When in doubt, ask for clarity.
Itís not enough to hear what your clients are asking for. Youíve got to really listen.
If youíre wondering why youíre not booking work, this could very well be one of the reasons why!
Marc Scott has been involved in broadcasting and voice over since 1995, including work in radio and television, and hosting the number 1-rated Afternoon Drive show in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. "When Iím not recording my latest voice over job you can likely find me at the fire hall: Iíve been a volunteer firefighter since 2000, or playing with power tools."
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