Forum Decorum

I belong to a slew of groups on LinkedIn – including a large number of voiceover related groups. Why is it that there seems to be a plethora of unprofessional comments. Social media has been around for years now and it amazes me how people don’t seem to understand that what they post is there for the world to see (when a group is an open group).

I felt compelled to comment today on one of them after a couple of people actually started slamming a legitimate producer for not posting his undying thanks to the group. His post was 6 MONTHS ago and people are still posting comments with links to their demos. And now some are complaining that he hasn’t posted to say thank you!?

It is an International Group with members from all over the world, and perhaps members with little time on social media or little time in […]

Another of my favorite MediaPost Pubs: Out to Launch

Want to see some of the most interesting, clever, stylish or funny of the new ads (mostly video, but some print too) being produced around the world? They are even including a random iPhone app of the week (what about my droid app of the week?).

Sign up to get Out to Launch – another of the multitude of enewsletters published by MediaPost.

This week they are showcasing spots for Orbitz which are pretty funny, Tetley Tea from an Australian firm, and Jagermeister’s first ad in the US. Just wish my internet connection was faster! Takes a while to download and play them.

2017-04-20T20:45:49+00:00 May 10th, 2012|Categories: Communication, Musings|Tags: , , , |

Content is a woman, distribution is a man.

While I am not directly involved in content creation as a producer anymore, or on the distribution side of things, this article caught my eye because of my interest in seeing good content.

I’m pretty sure I have posted links to this guy’s article before – Ashkan Karbasfrooshan is CEO of WatchMojo.com, a producer of premium video content.

These two articles talk about online content and exclusivity and include what seems to be an accurate picture of content being a “woman” and distribution, a “man.”

He postulates…

By and large, distribution companies

–        never make any promises,

–        have no-strings-attached offerings,

–        make no commitments,

–        rarely seek exclusivity, and

–        when they do, it’s usually too good to be true.

Content owners, meanwhile,

–        enter distribution deals with expectations,

–        believe the promises they hear,

–        expect a commitment, and

–        want a guarantee.

In his second article on the same subject, he adds a third and fourth element to this […]

2017-04-20T20:45:52+00:00 November 28th, 2011|Categories: Business, Communication, Musings|Tags: , , , |

Video Marketing Works – When Done Right

One of the electronic publications that I read faithfully is MediaPost’s Online Video Insider.

The latest column – Bulleted Points Miss the Point, by Jerry Bader, took me on a little trip down memory lane and at the same time gave me some very interesting facts about online video marketing.

As a video producer and scriptwriter in a former life – I spent long hours with colleagues discussing what it was we were actually supposed to be doing for the client. Guiding them to the right media for their message was what we all hoped would be the answer from the bosses. And most of the time, in most of the companies I had the pleasure to do business with – either full-time or as a free lancer – we were afforded this power.

And our job was to make sure that the client’s message was delivered to their specific […]

2017-04-20T20:45:53+00:00 August 5th, 2011|Categories: Communication, Musings|

Thanks for the Thanks!

Everyone likes a “thank you.” And sometimes we don’t take the time to pass along a sincere thank you to the people we interact with every day. Oh, we say “thanks” at the grocery store when we get our receipt. “Thanks” at the restaurant when someone refills our coffee cup or delivers the bill to the table. The sincerity of the “thanks” when someone hands us the bill for the meal is probably in question.

So it is nice to get a sincere thank you when none is really expected. I have toyed with the idea of sending out personal Thank You cards after sessions – and actually have some cards just for this purpose. Not many talent does this from what I can glean from various VO talent message boards. The trouble is, I am so busy just recording the jobs and creating the invoices that I simply forget!

And part […]

2017-04-20T20:45:54+00:00 July 28th, 2011|Categories: Communication, Musings|Tags: |

Cardio Needed for Conversation Muscles

Ah – the loneliness of the voiceover actor these days. Day after day – alone in our padded rooms with only the occasional directed session – we rarely get to converse with our clients – much less actually see them face-to-face. Skype does’t count. And, like anything, if you don’t use certain muscles, they atrophy.  Time for some cardio for my conversation muscles!

The VO team is usually a small one to begin with – so even if you do have a phone patch or ISDN session – you are still only talking to a small earful of people. Most of the time, it is my fingers doing the talking to the client, and my voice is reserved for the booth.

Last week, I learned that face-to-face interaction with clients and crew takes a lot more energy than I remember. After an all day on-camera shoot (OK, mostly all day) with a crew filled with […]

2017-04-20T20:45:57+00:00 January 9th, 2011|Categories: Communication, Musings|

What the heck just happened?

Excuse me, did I miss something? Like the whole 2nd half of the year maybe? What is this pile of paperwork sitting here? Wait, what I meant to say was what are all these piles of paperwork sitting here? Why is that list of things to do getting longer instead of shorter?

Part of it is personal obligations – that has increased over the past year and a half or so – since my mom moved out here from across the country. Part of it is that my ability to be superwoman is diminishing due to hot flashes.

Part of it is a slight increase in the amount of time I am spending chasing down money from people I didn’t expect to have to chase down for money.

But a big part of it is the time suckers – Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, other social media message boards, my volunteer time for MCA-I, this blog, the other […]

2017-04-20T20:45:57+00:00 December 22nd, 2010|Categories: Business, Communication, Technology|

Gah! Facebook is wonky!

OK – I think I can clearly see my addiction now. Facebook has been going down frequently over the past few days and I find myself compulsively refreshing the screen begging that its little blue interface appears.

There are many people with whom I have no other contact other than through Facebook. No email. No phone. Just a wonky URL.

So now I need to spend some time getting additional contact information from at least some of these folks. Hold on a moment…

Ah – Facebook is back up – for the time being…

See you later!

2010-09-25T11:44:08+00:00 September 25th, 2010|Categories: Communication, Musings|

Time Balancing Act

There has to be a better way to allocate my time. Lately I seem to be living in reaction mode. The BlackBerry has a lot to do with this I think.

Ever since I got the little pacifier, I am a slave to the flashing red light. It sits next to my keyboard while I am working on an edit or doing some research or marketing or bookkeeping – and when it starts to flash I am COMPELLED to stop what I am doing, pick it up, and see what emergency is calling.  

OK, not very many emergencies in the voiceover business, but probably more than one would expect. But usually it is something like an ad for discount travel or hotels, chain letters from friends, Facebook updates, and auditions. I also get scripts from clients for jobs and requests for quotes for possible jobs.

The point is that instead of finishing up what […]

2017-04-20T20:45:59+00:00 July 28th, 2010|Categories: Business, Communication, Marketing, Musings|

Getting the Right Results from a Voiceover Session

(Updated June 24, 2015)

Professional video and multimedia producers know there is a lot more involved in a successful voiceover than simply recording the voice and slapping it into a time line. You need to connect and communicate with the audience.

Picking the right “talent”
The process starts with the initial selection of the voice talent for a particular project.

Start early and try not to scrimp on the budget for the talent. You want a voice that will be able to get the “right” read in the shortest amount of time. If you have questions about what to budget for talent for a particular project, make a few phone calls (to another producer, to talent you respect or best yet, a talent agent) and see what the going rate should be. You can usually find someone to do the job for practically nothing, but very often what you end up paying in extra studio time to […]