How to Succeed in the Voiceover Industry

It is no secret that the voiceover business can be intensely competitive, especially when just starting out and making a name for yourself. It takes practice and a serious investment of personal time to learn the skills needed to become established as a go to voiceover actor. So, what are some tips to succeed where others have failed in the voiceover industry? Below are some expert tips that have been tested and can help you on this journey to make it.

  • Read anything and everything you can find on voice over. For example, pick up a copy of “The Art of Voice Acting” written by James Alburger, a multiple Grammy winning voiceover artist. The wisdom of those who have succeeded in the path you are now on is worth the investment.
  • Get some professional training. This is not just limited to voiceover specific trainings either. Try some acting classes or even some production workshops. It will help to know what other performers are doing so you can use best practices across the board in your own work. This also can include finding local classes offered at a community center or adult learning center or, if you have the resources, hiring a private coach to mentor you.
  • Produce a killer demo. This is the first impression many companies will have of your talent. By putting in time and money to produce a great demo, you can save a lot of time and money down the line on networking and marketing for yourself. Bonus tip: do not rush into producing your demo and instead take your time to make sure it is ready to distribute.
  • Quality equipment is your best friend.  You can have the best voice in the world and immeasurable talent but that makes no difference if you are using an old and battered microphone to seize your voice. How and where you record your sound will play a huge part in how your final product comes out and DIY digital audio recording cannot replace recording done in a studio.

Finally, and most importantly, have fun with your craft. If you don’t love it, it will show and you can’t expect anyone to want to hire a passionless voiceover artist. Let your passion bleed into your work.


Voiceover work: What does your home studio need and is it worth it?

Working from home can be a relaxing and freeing experience, especially for those lucky enough to make a full-time income from it. For voiceover artists, whether freelance or career, this can mean deciding whether or not to invest in a home studio for your voiceover work. While this would most likely require a time and money investment, some experts swear by it. This article will discuss whether you need it and if so, how to make sure it is worth it.

Do You Need It?

Every professional needs a personal space reserved for his or her career needs, whether at an external office or in the home. For a voiceover artist, it is highly recommended that you make the choice to either schedule professional studio time or create your own in-home studio. While it is not mandatory, it is incredibly helpful. If you are trying to make your voiceover career your only career, then yes, you do need it. If this is more of a freelance or passion project, then it is not.

Deciding on Your Studio Space

So, you need a home studio space for your voiceover work and want to figure out the best place to put it. If in a large area with an extra room, this would be perfect. However, if you do not have an extra room available, try to partition off a part of your home to create a feeling of a separate space and to get rid of distractions. For the non-claustrophobics out there, you could even convert a closet into your studio.  Once you have your space, make sure you have good sound quality in it and try to make it as soundproof as possible.

Getting the Right (Affordable) Equipment

Next, you will need to get the proper equipment to finish up your home studio. Thankfully, you can design and stock a high-quality home voice studio for $2K or under. You will just need a good microphone with a stand, a recording interface, a solid pair of headphones, and a computer with recording software.

So, is it worth it? Depending on how much time and energy you put into this home studio, it very well could pay for itself in voiceover jobs ten times over. It all comes down to how much you want to invest.

Voiceover Spotlight: Translation

As a voiceover artist, you have many avenues you can go down. Each month, I focus on a particular voiceover niche. This month, I would like to tell you about translation voiceover.

The term for voiceover work for translation is dubbing. The way it works is the voiceover artist will record the preferred language for the television show or film. The recording is then put into the show or film taking the place of the original language.

You may have noticed dubbing when watching a foreign film that was produced in a different country. While you watch the actors speaking, the voice does not match the actor’s mouth. Instead, you can hear your language, so you can understand what is going on.

Voiceover artists doing dubbing work are offset actors. They do not have to act out the parts, but they must change their voice as if they are acting out what is on the screen. This is why being a dubbing voiceover artist takes a lot of skill.

How to Get Into This Type of Voiceover Work

When trying to become a voiceover artist that dubs films and television shows, you must know another language fluently. While you can learn a language well through years of classes and immersion in the culture, those who are natural speakers seem to have the easiest time doing this type of work.

Once you are bilingual or even trilingual, you will need to start recording demos to show translation agencies. You can do this by taking a film or television show and dubbing the language you know. This is the best way to show that you are able to change your voice to match the actors on screen and can accurately translate the language. It is best to record a few different types of films/television shows such as drama, horror, romance, etc. This will show how versatile your voiceover skills are.

When your demos are complete, you can start to market yourself. Reach out to production companies identifying yourself as a voiceover artist specializing in dubbing.

You can also reach out to translation companies. Producers often turn to them to find voiceover artists for their projects. These producers usually have smaller projects compared to the production companies you would market yourself to, but it’s good to get some experience first to pad your resume.

Keep in mind that you do not need to stick to your local area or even the country when looking for work. You can apply for projects and market to companies all over the United States since all of the work can be done remotely. You can also reach out to production companies in the country that you know the language. For example, if you speak Spanish fluently, you can look for work in Spain, Central or South America because you can always use your English skills to dub their shows and films.

Finding work can be difficult, but keep working at it. The more you market, the higher the chances you’ll find a project. Once you have one project, it will give you the experience to increase your chances of getting something else. Good luck to you!


Getting Ready for the Colder Weather as a Voiceover Artist

The weather is getting cooler. Voiceover artists everywhere are bracing themselves for another chilly autumn and cold winter ahead. As you get ready for the colder months, consider these ways to protect your voice.

Scarves are Necessary

Do not leave your home without a scarf wrapped around your neck. If possible, place it over your nose and mouth as well. The scarf will keep your throat warm and filter some of that cold air, so you do not breathe it into your throat and lungs.

Put Your Doctor on Speed Dial

As soon as you believe you are sick, call your doctor. There is no sense in waiting until you lose your voice to call him. If you get into the doctor’s office quick enough, you may be able to get some antibiotics or medication that will save your voice.

Inhale Steam

You can produce steam in a few different ways:

  1. Purchase a humidifier. This is the easiest way to produce steam. When you turn it on, place your head far enough away from the steam that you do not burn yourself. Be sure you can inhale the steam and then breathe it back out again with ease.
  2. Boil some water on your stove. Turn off the heat to it and place a towel over your head. Drape the ends of the towel over the pot and then breathe the steam in deeply. This means to take a deep breath through your nose and then breathe it out through your mouth. Do it for 60 seconds.
  3. Run a hot shower. If your shower gets hot enough, this is an easy way to create a spa-like experience and protect your voice. Run the shower until your bathroom fills with steam. You can then sit and relax while breathing the steam in and out.

It is best to do steam treatment twice a day during the colder months since it can greatly help the quality of your voice.

You may want to add Eucalyptus oil to the water you are steaming. It can help loosen mucous in your throat.

Drink Tea

Tea can be so beneficial to your throat. Hot tea can soothe a scratchy throat. Choose herbal teas because they tend to help with any swelling your throat may be experiencing from the frigid temperatures.

To sweeten the tea, try honey. Honey will coat your throat. This can further protect your throat from the cold and help break up any mucous.

Take Breaks as Needed

Your throat goes through a lot during the colder months of the year. Do not push your throat to do more than it can do during this time. Give yourself many breaks, keep your water and tea close, and make sure to take care of yourself. The more you do to make sure you do not get sick, the more likely you will be able to get through these next few months being just as productive as you are the rest of the year.