Warning: Voice Over artists need passion to persist, pursue and plan in all stages of play.
In an industry as hidden as Voice Over, it can be tricky to see what excellence looks like. Common complaints I hear those I coach, “I’m not willing to do what I do that. Or if I knew this is what it was going to be like, I probably wouldn’t have come.” The odd thing is, students ARE willing to pay con artists huge sums or buy into interviews with poor counsel for a LLC when they have zero assets to protect. I am not sure why people want an easy way out. Perhaps, it’s checks the fantasy box for them that deceives them into believing their dream’s coming true. As a former farm girl, I eat hard work for breakfast. Work saves you. It’s really a waste of your time to not harness your will. I see the gold in the practical.
Most want the harvest without toil. Apparently they are so talented they don’t have to do the work. If you’re not jealous of my seed, don’t be jealous of my harvest. People give away their power by not choosing the daily discipline of desire. Effort is free and pays well. This is what it looks like:
Via Insta Stories Jen Gotch recording her rad podcast on Girl Boss Radio in Nashville. #JEOK
Principle of sowing and reaping: Seed + Time = Harvest.
Time’s the slowest season so make peace with it now. It is in this field you til tenacity or rot. What are you doing to get traction? The beauty pageant is over. Identify. Cease short cuts.
What short cuts sound like:
- Obtain VO Agents in every state.
- Demos by Irrelevant Producers.
- Attending VO Conferences.
In contrast, here is how you sow seeds: get busy listening. Pursue commericials like it’s your job. Cuz it is. What do you hear? I can provide this can you? What’s your fav spot and why? Focus on commercial voice over first. It’s the category with the most copy thus opportunity and pays the best. Up to you to know what is being bought and sold in the marketplace this gives you an advantage of knowing who to target and giving a funnel for your focus.
Here’s what I’m hearing for the ladies: range from independent edgy urban to ‘Casual Care’ celebrity (Ellen example on Spectrum) to mom’ed out, for the fellas: traditional across the board including the return of the monster truck announcer and for the kiddo’s: exotic. Both guys and gals are embracing regionalisms such as the amazing African American ‘Urban Attitude’ Announcer on AT&T to southern comfort on food spots such as the ‘Dad & Grandpa’ reads for Stouffers & Applebee’s or zany Matthew McConaughey’s wacky Texan twang for Carl’s Jr. Ever notice women are rarely the voice of fast food chains? Oddly enough, I booked a Checker’s campaign over a 15 years ago because they thought I was black and when they found out I was white with blonde hair, I lost the gig. Hey some crackers have soul! VO Trend – embracing regional ethnic. Gone are the days of white washing voice overs. Ethnicity’s no longer ambiguous. To clarify, for children’s voice over, I hear them (meaning unable to tell if it is a girl or boy) on spots that are magical. Put in the time to study!
- AMC Theatres
- American Express
- Ancestery DNA dot com
- AT&T Capital One
- Aulani (“Let your legend begin Aulani.”)
- Best Buy
- Brother Printer
- Burlington (“You’ll feel warm inside and so will they…”) being hugged read
- Capital One (“What’s in your wallet?”)
- “Downey and it’s done”
- GMA Today
- Gold Bond middle aged stoic matter of fact read
- Jenny Craig
- Kohl’s young white
- Lazy Boy Urban Attitudes (“Live life comfortably”) know it all read
- Sleep center inside Living Spaces (Feel good marketing “mattress to foster girls”)
- Lincoln MKZ
- Lysol laundry sanitizer
- Marshall’s (“Never Boring. Always Surprising.”)
- Realtor dot com (“The home of home search”)
- Royal Caribbean
- (“School is coming Get ready with Scotch Brand Tapes”)
- Spectrum Mobile Ellen DeGeneres (‘Working together to save you money.”)
- State Farm
- Applebee’s White Southern twang Dad
- Blue Moon
- Carl’s Jr.
- Children’s Claritin
- Google (Assistant)
- Honda (Fred Savage)
- Liberty Mutual Insurance
- Stouffers (“What are you hungry for?”) Black Southern G’pa
- T- Mobile
- Volkswagen Atlas (Sounds like a young Martin Sheen)
File under how to be in the game. Don’t get lost in the maze!
Listen for vendors that are currently buying your sound then pitch to them.
Listen to people who make six figures in VO. Pick sweet sources to fuel your talent. I’m not trying to tip over your apple cart but predators target your insecurities online and attack you where you’re most vulnerable FOMO. Who you end up becoming is up to you! You can go your own way. I like free actions that you pay for with time aka putting in the work such as the listening exercise I highlighted. I don’t know a more practical way to put in the work. Workaround? Stop taking advice from people who have never done it. More than once. Longevity indicates character is attached. Passion Problem – Killer of VO Crops. How to reap work? Sow. Physically ground yourself – you must move to make money. How can you be in the game if you’re not submersed? Remember the cycle seed, TIME and harvest.
Break a Lip,
P.S. How do you get to work? What themes do you see in the booked above? Notice how spots designed to tug at heart strings are spoken by women?
P.P.S. The Harvest Moon
It is the Harvest Moon! On gilded vanes
And roofs of villages, on woodland crests
And their aerial neighborhoods of nests
Deserted, on the curtained window-panes
Of rooms where children sleep, on country lanes
And harvest-fields, its mystic splendor rests!
Gone are the birds that were our summer guests,
With the last sheaves return the laboring wains!
All things are symbols: the external shows
Of Nature have their image in the mind,
As flowers and fruits and falling of the leaves;
The song-birds leave us at the summer’s close,
Only the empty nests are left behind,
And pipings of the quail among the sheaves.