My dear friend and fellow voiceover talent Maxine Dunn had an article published on VoiceOverXtra discussing something near and dear to my heart – Cold Calling.
“Smiling and Dialing.” The act of picking up the phone and actually speaking to someone. People make a huge deal about the idea and the reality of “cold calls.” In reality – it ain’t that bad – and it can yield fabulous results.
Top message from the article:
Forget the “sales objective” training modules that lead you through a step-by-step trajectory to “get the sale.” People do business with people they know, like, and trust. So your cold call is opening the door and initiating that relationship.
Got this in an email a couple months ago from Edge Studios and found it again going through my InBox. Some great advice here for the beginner and a reminder for the pros…
Shut up! And 7 other things to do AFTER reading your script!
It’s not just getting the gig that’s important.
It’s making sure the client hires you again.
So we’re sharing 7 things many voice talent forget to do after reading their copy!
1. Shut up when done reading your copy. Don’t tell your client how you did – you’re liable to contradict their opinion and/or create more work for everyone by opening up a can of worms. Instead listen to their direction. Read again when prompted.
2. Conversely, when the job is done, talk. Thank them. Request a copy of the finished product. Request a testimonial.
3. Later that day, send an email. Say it was nice to work with them. Compliment them […]
It has been an interesting year – trying to find the right mix of media to keep in contact with my clients and potential clients. Depending on who you talk to, the mix of media can be one or more of the above, in any order and in every possible percentage. What works for you?
I’m finding that my Blackberry lets me get out of the studio, but getting out of the studio means less time to work my network of contacts. And being an early adopter of nearly everything technological (I had a Kaypro), I have had to try out social media as a way to connect.
Can’t say that it is really working for me yet – although I did manage to land a nice project through a Facebook happy coincidence. I joined an e-Learning group the same day someone else did who happened to be looking for female voice […]
Ah, technology today. My new Toshiba Satellite laptop was on the front porch yesterday.
Open the box. Plug it in. It finds my network. Asks a couple of questions and boom, we are up and running. This one has Windows 7 on it. So far, it seems pretty self-explanatory and user friendly.
Now comes the task of loading all my software on it to see if it is user friendly for the various programs. This will take me until the end of the week probably.
- Adobe Audition (done, not checked yet for recording)
- Office (at least Excel and Word – maybe Front Page for website updates on the road)
- Vox Studio
- Word 2 Wav
- Paint Shop Pro
- Miscellaneous enhancements for playing audio, video, etc.
You’ve heard the saying – don’t put all your eggs in one basket. I’ve been thinking about that the past day or so.
I am currently in Orange County at the beautiful Pelican Hill resort doing a live backstage announce gig for a biotech company. This is the 4th year in a row that I have been asked to be the voice of the company for this particular sales meeting. It is a fun job. The people are nice. The food and accomodations are always more than good. And the pay is quite good as well. But each year, I try to not think about the next year. Because next year may not come.
Early in my voiceover career – or perhaps I should call it my free lance career, because I was doing other things besides voiceover at that time (producing and writing and some on-camera spokesperson) – I had a […]
Todd Schick may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but he really is sharp and I recently ran across his “rate” page on his website. He also recorded the content of the page so you can hear what he sounds like.
Check it out! Interesting, irreverant, controversial. That’s Todd.
I read a lot of message boards and user groups focused on the voiceover biz. One of them is the Yahoo Voiceover Newsgroup and a recent thread has been about some of the many changes facing the – well, pretty much ANY business these days.
Combine the economy woes with the changes that the Internet brings every day and you have a lot of old-timers scrambling to make the new world of voiceover work for them. You also have more and more who want to break into the business lured by promises of easy money just for talking. It takes a lot more than just talent…
Here are a couple of paragraphs of sage advice from Jennifer Vaughn.
Talent doesn’t take the front seat in any successful business. A successful business requires a savvy business person who is knowledgeable in all the elements required to make a business profitable. That […]
While this is simplified, there are two lists here of things the budding voiceover talent of today might need to make it.
The first is a list of the basic physical hardware and software assets needed to succeed in the business today. The second is more intangible, but even more important if you want to actually work and make a living doing voiceovers.
The Tangible (Physical) Assets
- Computer for recording
- Large hard drive (as many Gigs as you can afford)
- Computer speed (as fast as you can afford)
- Good sound card (most computers these days come with decent sound card that will work for basic voiceover)
- Lots of memory (as much as you can afford)
- DVD/CD drive AND a CD-R/RW Sound
- Recording Software (Sound Forge, GoldWave, Adobe Audition, ProTools)
- High-speed Internet Access (cable or DSL)
- Web Presence – your own web site or your demos posted on a web site
- Microphone – decent mike – $300 or more that works with your […]
This is a subjective business – this business we are in – the business of recording our voice for sales, marketing, information, entertainment. And it is a mystery for sure sometimes as to why one voice is selected out of all the choices submitted.
I’ve mentioned recently that after many many years in this business, I am starting to have the opportunity to go vocal cord to vocal cord with some of the best most well known talent in the industry. My ear is caught many times a day by the radio or the TV as spots that I have auditioned for fly out of the speakers.
I have heard the Geico Pothole and Parking Column spots. The new Chinet spots. Something for weight loss. And several more. I have returned to my audio files to compare what ended up on the air with what I submitted. And I know that my audition […]
This business is not about your voice. It is about knowing where you fit – what you have to sell. It is about having a demo that showcases this effectively. And it is about finding the people who want to buy what you have to sell. That’s called Marketing!
But in reality, you are not really selling. Your goal with marketing is to know your customer so well that your services sell themselves. Marketing is about understanding what you do and what your potential customer wants. It is about bringing your “product” to this market (in this case your commercial demo to people who make commercials, or your narration demo, or your promo demo, or your animation demo, etc.). It is about finding new products for new markets.
Marketing is your strategy and includes a whole bunch of activities:
- Business Development – Wikipedia defines this as techniques and responsibilities which aim at gaining new customers […]