What are the top voiceover youtube channels? The channels that you turn to for the best sources of information, education and information for voiceover. Well, that’s the controversial murky water that I find myself swimming in right now. Anytime you use the words top or best to describe anything, you are bound to open pandora’s box. The level of nays can be just as loud as the yays. But as a lover of Youtube University, I find myself looking for the best channels to inspire and inform me on what’s happening in the voiceover industry.
Over the years, there have been many channels and talent who have utilized Youtube as a way of getting out their message, producing content and expanding their brand awareness. Sure, there are other outlets to do that, but Youtube is the second largest search platform in the word. So when people search for the top anything voiceover, the top voiceover Youtube channels will appear right there with their google search.
The problem comes with the disagreements. Over the years, I have heard the mumblings of personality conflicts and staunch disagreements with the methodology and teachings of certain VO Youtubers. Some have argued that anyone teaching and encouraging the use of Fiverr to “newbies” don’t have our best interest as an industry at heart. And these kinds of disagreements turn people off to certain Voiceover Youtube channels. I get it. But I also get that change is dolorous and that regardless of disagreements, the popularity and relevance of the VO Youtubers making these videos cannot be ignored.
How I Decided Which Were The Top Voiceover Youtube Channels
I had to create criteria. I decided that the age of a channel, consistency of uploads, value to its viewers, and entertainment value and how well known the channel is, would be how I decided. I also decided to list them in random order as to not seem to express biases toward or against. Still, there is some subjectivity even in the criteria that could still open itself up to criticism (and me). Still, in good faith, I decided to give it a shot with the disclaimer that these are not mostly recommendations but acknowledgments that these channels have all come across my radar.
Ask Dave Fennoy Anything
Ask Dave Fennoy Anything Streams on the DaveFennoy Voiceover Training Channel every Wednesday at 8pm Pacific time. Dave is a legend in voiceover gaming who also has his hand in countless areas of voiceover. He is an authority in VO Games and Character Coaching. You can catch him at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpR7jedutYNue9GU84uS-Cg
The Gift Of Gab
Gabrielle Nistico’s Channel post videos with frank voiceover advice with a witty and sometimes dry humor style that appeals to both new voice actors and professionals. Gabby is a voiceover actor, demo producer and career coach in Charlotte. Her channel can be found at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-JhbChXLVwTvgSxrtWpajg
Earl Hall- Earl Hall Studio
Earl markets his brand as a coach capable of taking students from step 0 to 100. He has a number of courses online for marketing your own voiceover career. He runs a free training facebook group and teaches students to automate their voiceover success. His channel is https://www.youtube.com/c/EarlHallStudio/featured
A VO’s Journey
Anthony Pica’s brand stretches across platforms from Facebook to Youtube to Instagram. He is spreading the word of what it really takes to earn a living, learn how to voice actor and run a voiceover business from the perspective of someone who is doing it. Check out Anthony at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCaSvjdnxdx69qoW9ryuxCjQ
Starting in 2012, Anna Brisbin built a voiceover channel and career from doing impressions from movies, cartoons, and assorted characters. Her channel attracts viewers drawn to see her perform these impersonations. The best part about it is that she did it all from her not-so-fancy, sometimes messy closet with very basic equipment. To date, Brizzy Voices has a whopping 2.1 Million subscribers and has videos that boast 27 Million views. Not bad. Not bad at all. Her channel is https://www.youtube.com/brizzy/featured
When you have a name like Voiceover Masterclass, it just sounds so official. Peter Baker’s gentlemanly British style and consistently give his videos a university type of feel to it. You almost feel as if you should enroll into the channel as opposed to subscribe to it. His videos a purposefully produced and feature a professional theme with the thumbnails. His voiceover youtube channel is https://www.youtube.com/c/Voiceovermasterclass/featured
VO Buzz Weekly
Chuck and Stacy are two of the most known figures in the voiceover business. Few people have as many friends and are as well-liked then the two of them. They have been producing the only Voiceover Talk Show since I have been a working actor. No other voiceover channel rivals professional network shows like theirs does. Each week, they bring you a new voiceover superstar. Catch their show at https://www.youtube.com/user/vobuzzweekly
VOBS- Voice Over Body Shop
Dan Leonard and George Whittam are two of the most respected voiceover tech guys in the business. Dan, who is an accomplished voice actor himself, and “George the Tech” have been teaming up for more than a decade to help make voiceover technology more understandable for users. They host a live one to two-hour-long show each week where they explain VO gear and bring on special voiceover guests. Find them at https://www.youtube.com/c/Ewabsshow/featured
According to his channel, Jordan is a Voiceover Talent, Voice Matcher, Demo Producer, Audio Producer, Audio Engineer, Improv Theater Actor, Music Enthusiast, Tech Geek, Professional Sideburn Grower. It’s that last part that makes you tune in. Not only does Jordan know his stuff, but he’s about making good content that helps people. Recently Jordan has started doing courses to help other voice actors with their sound, an area that so many of us get wrong. His channel is https://www.youtube.com/c/JordanReynolds/featured
Mike DelGaudio dedicates his channel to the tech of at-home, professional voice over. He review microphones, studio equipment and help new voice actors set up their studios from hardware to software so they can make the next great recording! The Booth Junkie channel has attracted 123,000 subscribers and has reviewed Reaper, portable isolation booths, kaotica eyeball and compared cheap vs expensive microphones. Booth Junkie is found at https://www.youtube.com/c/BoothJunkieVO/featured
Bill Dewees is a professional voice over artist and coach. His channnel helps new and existing voice over artists get found, get heard, and get hired. Everything from picking your first mic to how to land VO jobs and get paid. Bill has some of the most consistent content on youtube for voice actors, posting new videos twice weekly. It’s simple in production and straightforward in approach. The channel, like some others, is a gateway to Bill’s coaching sites that guide viewers to success in voiceover. His channel is https://www.youtube.com/c/BillDeWees/featured
Undoubtedly there are other channels I forgot to mention. And for some that I did mention, I may be facing cancel culture. If there are any that I should have put on the list, go to youtube and leave a comment under the video in the comments section. Please try to be respectful.
Am I The Big Deal Voiceover Guy or am I hardly working? Here’s the answer. Every shot that Lebron James takes has the potential to be game-changing, and yet, it’s just another day at the office. Every surgery a surgeon does is one of the many surgeries he may do in a day and one of the thousands he may do in his career. Each one is life-changing and still, it’s just another surgery that he has performed. Likewise, every voiceover that I as a voice actor does, is another job that boosts a brand’s exposure but is one of the close to 10,000 that I have done and soon forget. Not every VO job is a big deal.
People often ask me the question “What are you working on nowadays?” Since I have entered the professional realm of VO, it’s always stood out to me as an awkward question. I don’t quite know how to answer. I often answer with “What do you mean?” They usually respond by saying “You know, Are you working on a project right now?”
My response always ends up being an education for the person in how voiceover works. “I work every day and there is no particular project that I can remember. I do my work, send it back to the client and forget it.” I often use the analogy of the surgeon or the basketball player to explain.
Perception vs Reality About Voiceover
I have figured out that there are two kinds of people when it comes to voiceover. The people who think that every day I am doing Disney movie voiceovers that take months to complete and the type who think that I barely work and only make a few dollars to eat scraps for lunch. In reality, the truth is somewhere in between.
The Blue-Collar Voiceover Talent
I consider myself a blue-collar voiceover talent with a voiceover business. I am not the big studio, SAG Aftra Union voice that is on all the stuff you hear everywhere. But I also don’t consider myself a freelancer. Mine is a business that services clients. I remember auditioning in person for the Harlem Globetrotters who were impressed with my talent and long list of big clients on my resume. After the audition, the interviewer excitedly asked, “I see you’ve worked for a lot of big companies?” I said “yes. I have provided them with voiceover for commercials and narrations from my home studio.” At that point he seemed less impressed and said “Oh, you’re a freelancer.”
I should’ve considered this a warning sign. He seemed not to respect my profession, which eventually showed in the way they treated me, but that’s another story. At that moment I corrected him “No! I have a voiceover business. I can take this job as long as it doesn’t interfere with me servicing my clients. I have radio stations who I image for and a list of other independent clients who depend on me.” But his response was again condescending “We have other guys who have side gigs also who get some time to work when they are out on the road.” And that should’ve been my sign to run.
The Voiceover Business Entrepreneur
He is not alone in his misunderstanding of my voiceover business. While he downgraded my profession, others look way up at me as if I am the voiceover version of Tom Cruise. They think I am doing Mission Impossible trailers every day and Pixar films. Frequently I have conversations with these types who, when I let the air out of their balloons that I don’t have these major roles, they actually ask me “Why NOT?”
They generally go on to explain that my 17-year-old career should be taking a path that it hasn’t taken. “Man this is Atlanta. You should be calling Cartoon Network or go up to Tyler Perry Studios and tell them to give you a job. Why haven’t you reached out to CNN?”They basically then think that I have failed myself to which I have to explain that “That’s NOT how things work”
CNN, nor Cartoon Network, nor Tyler (as if I’m on a first-named basis with Mr. Perry) don’t take to anyone walking up to their studios for jobs. Trust me, I’ve tried. I have to explain to people that I instead do steady, everyday work that most people never hear in the general public or don’t pay attention to. Things like narrations and explainer videos along with radio imaging and a lifetimes worth of nightclub and hip hop concert commercials. I assure them though, someone is listening to my voice 24/7 and there is no time of day that I am not being heard. With that explanation, they return to me back the cool factor.
Average Voiceover Guy in a Changing World
Getting people to understand that my job is just a job or that its a job at all has always been difficult. It’s not the traditional pathway that a college-educated dude from Brooklyn takes. It was a path that chose me. As the economy changes, more people are looking for multiple streams of income. And they first look towards their talents for remedy. Many are seeking a greater understanding of what they too can do with their voices. And with that, more people are open to listen and learn what an average voiceover talent does with their day.
Working from home has become the new norm. Tens of millions of people had suddenly been converted from office workers to digital home-mads when the shutdowns began. We left our one on one relationships at work and shifted to virtual co-workers, no longer sharing a workspace and the casual conversations at the water cooler. The business trips stopped. The cold coffees in the break rooms ceased to exist. And the things that connected us and gave us variance in our lives came to a halt. For so many, these disconnects made us feel lonely.
I remember when the pandemic started many of my colleagues and friends in the voiceover business joked about their many years of experience working from home. Like them, I had been working from home for many years. As a full-timer in the voiceover industry, you work in a booth, or a closet, or any enclosed space that will help reduce reflective noises. And for most, they come out of those spaces after a full (or partial) day’s work to interact with their families and friends and enjoy activities.
My life and experience working from home have always been different. Before becoming a voiceover talent, I worked in the school system as a substitute and afterschool teacher. As you could imagine, I was never alone. I was always busy, with tens and sometimes hundreds of kids around me. There were parents to talk to and co-workers to congregate with and share outrageous and unbelievable stories about the kids. After school, I hung out with my co-working friends.
But in 2006, after 2 years of part-time voice acting, I made a commitment to being a full-time voiceover talent (after I was fired from substitute teaching). No more hanging with co-workers or seeing the kids. Or conferencing in person with parents to discuss why their kid’s behavior at school was markedly different than it was at home. No mas! And as a result, I became far less relevant to the people I worked with. To make up for this, I involved myself in activities.
What’s So Different About Me?
When I left my job, or rather, when my job left me, I had to find different things to involve myself in. Unlike so many of my friends and former co-workers, I don’t have a family. Over the many years, I have had many girlfriends but I don’t have any children. I don’t even have a dog. For much of those years as well, I lived alone. While I saw even my youngest brother get married and have beautiful daughters, I decided that a life of travel was the path for me.
I am also an introvert who has always forced himself to be social, and it’s worked for me. I have found friends in new countries while traveling. I’ve encountered new buddies while working out in the gym. I have new friends from attending various Spanish meet-up groups. And even found some guys who gladly and repeatedly dropped me on my head doing judo (lol). I have made friends based on the activities that we have in common which has warded off loneliness. But generally, when those activities were over, I was back to the voiceover booth and back to being alone.
So Why Do I Feel Lonely Now?
The pandemic really highlighted how fragile my associations were. It shone a spotlight on how I had medicated myself with travel and meet-ups. It was initially tough and made me feel lonely. Unlike my co-workers who had their children, spouses, and dog to huddle around the barrage of news coming in about the virus, I did not have that. I was actually working doing radio imaging (alone in the booth) to inform and encourage people to stay home. All the meanwhile spending no time producing nightclub commercials, because they were locked down. I was also suffering from health issues that started before covid.
All of the things that I had occupied my time and mind with were crumbling around me. My social interactions have been reduced to social media and a sharp increase in on-screen time. My time in the gym halted and my only exercise was a brisk walk from the studio couch to the bathroom before my bladder gave way. There was no more swimming. There was no martial arts training. Instead, there were short drone flights around the neighborhood with my DJI Mavic; at least until that fateful day when I flew it into some electrical wires (RIP Mav).
Suddenly I was doing nothing but scrolling. My health and good sense dictated that I follow the CDC guidelines. It wasn’t long before I saw posts from here in Georgia and other red states where everyone was back out and about. Heck, at that point the pandemic had just started a month prior and some clubs were back open. Everyone was having fun. They were in the bars, hanging out in Miami, going out to restaurants and I was still sheltering. The gym re-opened in June 2020. Some of my gym buddies went back to working out immediately. Some were decidedly cautious. But regardless, I allowed my membership to lapse and have still not renewed.
What Now? Do I Go Back To Normal Now That I’m Vaccinated?
No! The pandemic isn’t over. 94% doesn’t mean 100% effective and there are still breakthrough infections. The number of people getting vaccinated with both shots is waning. And the anti-vaxers are getting louder. All of this means, that as the summer progresses, I take caution in finding things to do outside with my girlfriend. We still plan to do activities but in a controlled manner. I’ll get back to medicating myself with travel. I have already started flying again, but I take extra precautions. But in all of that, I’ll still be working from home.
The Covid pandemic has taught me a few lessons. It has taught me that people need people and to strengthen the connections that I have with others. It’s taught me that working from home isn’t for everyone. Being a loner is ok. But I don’t have to feel lonely. It’s important to discover commonalities with people and to keep up with them. The pandemic taught me that we are all mentally vulnerable and the necessity to continually evaluate one’s psychological health. I am still learning the value of random calls with the thousands of unused names and numbers in my contacts list. Because when dealing with the stress of toilet paper and gas shortages, we need others to relate to who are dealing with the same crap.
Political Voice Over matters. Because we, as voiceover talent speak for the people. Turn on the TV. Take a look outside. Depending on where you are you may see calm or you may see mayhem. And unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that what federal and local leaders decide for us has a substantial impact on our daily lives. This is a time where being neutral is impossible. Covid 19 and the effects that it has had on our economy will affect everyone. And the racial tensions in the United States are boiling over AGAIN! We all have a voice in this. So what do you do if you are a voice-over talent asked to do voiceover that hurts or hinders the causes that you stand for?
I’ve never understood how people could vote against their own interests. Yet tens of millions of Americans do it all the time. I guess I don’t understand them because I completely comprehend cause and effect. Candidate A says that beer is banned and you are a beer drinker. Yet you voice a commercial for that candidate? He is also against microphones that cost below $2500 because lobbyists and his donors are expensive mic manufacturers. So now you can’t crack open a brew when you want to and he has demanded that you get these super expensive mics. How do you stay neutral enough to do political voice over ads for Candidate A? I can’t.
Candidate A is hurting me and my business. And even if I attend AA meetings (I don’t actually consume alcohol) and earn enough money from doing political voice over for his ads to buy that Neuman U87, I know that he is simultaneously hurting my industry and all the best parties that I attend. This changes life as I know it. And even if I benefit in the short term, I lose overall.
Voicing Commercials for Politicians that Align with my Values
I recently completed my Political Voice Over demo. I decided to do one because I am passionate about the effects that all politics and policies have on our daily lives. I was born to take the side of the less powerful. My family came to the United States as immigrants in the 1960’s. Most of my grandmother’s sons served in the armed forces before they returned to buy homes and had families. It was important for them to educate their children well and be part of what happens in the neighborhood to its people.
My father and uncle were always a part of some action committee, political office, or school position. Both of my parents served as PTA president at my school at some time. When I faced repeated harassment and bullying and physical assault, which included being choked once, by the NYPD, my father knew what Captain to go see at the precinct.
Because my father was a vocal member of the community board and worked with the police in some cases, he spoke with the person in charge after an officer put his hands on his teenage son (who was just walking home.) Still, the policies on a citywide level prevented any action from being taken against the assailants. Effectively, my voice was silenced. So when I think about the voice over work I do, I think about having a voice first, and what I am representing.
Who Am I Voicing This Ad For? Know Your Candidate
I consider that the candidate that I am endorsing might actually win and take an anti-immigrant stance, or encourage the use of the police as a militant arm of indiscriminate racism. I consider that that candidate may win and take a public health or environmental stance that can harm communities that lack the resources to fight back. I consider that when Candidate A pays me for that political voice over, I’m gonna have to pay it back in the form higher taxes on the middle class and poor, to the benefit of his rich donors. There is no benign effect. It will come back on me.
Recently I was asked to do political voice over work for a national figure that seemingly supports the same police tactics that terrorized me as a child. I was honored that my talent was considered good enough for the national stage, but I had to decline. I asked a fellow African American if he would be interested in the referral because he voices ads for both sides of the aisle. I have also been asked to do political voice over for pro second amendment rights in a state that borders the one I grew up in. Understanding how guns get into the hands of criminals and the harm that is caused with those guns, I had to also decline. Cause and effect matter to me. I help them win and they make me lose.
What I Stand For
There are causes that represent other groups that have little to no immediate effect on me. But I stand for them because it is the right thing to do. I have a unique opportunity to be in a position where I may be called on to be a voice for the voiceless, to be the strident messenger for the silenced, and to communicate the narrative of the muted. Sometimes those people look like me and speak like me, but can’t speak up like me.
Check Out My Political Voice Over Demo Here
Dedicated to the memory of my brother Julian who died suddenly in late May. Born and raised in the UK, he was passionate about British and global politics. We never missed a chance to trade political barbs with one another. Brexit was his Achilles heel.
Dane: I’m Dane Reid, The Voiceover Guy. I am here with the team from voice actor websites. Guys! (Team Introduces Themselves) (Dane) And I don’t have any labs that fit five people.
I used to steal software and plugins for voiceover. I started my career with Cubase LE which came as free software with my Emu 1616 audio interface. As I realized the limitations of that software, I wanted to grow but I didn’t have the money to grow. But having friends in audio engineering, I found out that there were ways to get what was called cracked software.
My first cracked software was a Cubase SX. There was a company that was famous for cracking audio software called and I used to find their software either online or through a friend who had it. Cubase 2.1 was how I really learned to produce commercials. But a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) is only as good as the plugins. So for that, I had to find more cracked software.
Free Plugins? Or Digital Piracy?
The hot plugins of the day were waves plugins. Waves were really good and really expensive. Of everyone that I knew who did audio, maybe only one of them actually bought any of the waves plugins legally. Waves plugins could run 10k for a bundle. Being who I am I had to have the best bundles. I had the waves platinum, mercury and gold bundles at some time in history.
As my career grew, I never really considered buying the actual plugins. They were still out of my reach in price. Plus, what was the point? I was getting them for free. Free beats cheap any day. So I perfected my skills with free software and even upgraded as more cracked software replaced the older versions. I went from Cubase SX to Cubase 2.1. Then I moved on to several Nuendo versions for a few years. Meanwhile, voiceover and commercial orders piled on. I had a nice workflow.
I never shorted on hardware though. I bought my first Neuman for $1500. UA LA 610 for $1400. I owned several computers. A Mac and a PC and a PC laptop. I had travel gear and swapped out several audio interfaces at that time.
The Day It All Went Bad!
So what happened? Well, one morning I got up to do my work. I had several commercials in the pipeline for the day. I fired up my computer and my trusty Emu and then started Nuendo and BAM. Nothing. It wouldn’t start. I tried it again and still nothing. So I restarted the computer hoping that would help. Nothing again. I tried a few times and no result. I was in a bad position.
I called a friend and fellow talent to ask if I could come to his house and record this work and he asked me what had happened. I told him. And his response was something I didn’t expect. He said to me “Why don’t you just buy the software?” I had never thought to actually buy the software. So I did. I bought my first version of Cubase, which was Cubase 5. It cost me $300 at Guitar Center. I came home that morning with my dongle and installed the software and BAM…. Nothing!!
At this point, I’m even more panicked. Installing and getting up and running was much easier with cracked software. So I called Steinberg to help me. I went over several things troubleshooting with the tech before I finally had to admit to the tech that I previously installed unauthorized software. He went silent for a second, and in a judgemental tone said “Well then you have to wipe your entire computer clean and reinstall windows to install Cubase properly.
You can imagine my horror. But I had work to do and the day was coming to a close by now. I got off the phone, backed up as many of my files as I could, and wiped my hard drive. I realized that I had to change at this moment. I did put the plugins back on the computer because I needed them at that moment but over time I began to buy them. I didn’t buy all of them but I bought some.
Pay The Money. It Will Pay You Back!
Over the years I replaced Cubase 5 with Cubase 7 Artist. I also bought Cubase 8 Elements for my mobile rig and then upgraded to Cubase LE AI Elements 9.5. I also bought Cubase Artists 9 for my desktop home studio. That version made all of my 32-bit plugins obsolete so now I had to buy all new plugins. That’s when I bought the Apollo Twin and then the Apollo Arrow with all the plugins for those machines. Now, I can’t steal plugins. I buy them. I also fell in love and buy the Izotope plugins. I have several of those bundles for mixing and mastering. I continue to buy software and plugins for voiceover. For Christmas, I bought UAD’s Manley VoxBox and Valley People Dyna-Mite.
Where To Find Free Software
You don’t even have to steal software and plugins. For plugins, there are literally thousands of free ones online. All you have to do is google free audio plugins. For a DAW everyone knows about Audacity which is free but you can also download a free version of Mixpad which seems better than Audacity.
In my opinion, I get the fact that starting a business or learning a new craft is very expensive, but with free software and plugins for voiceover available now, don’t steal. Don’t steal anything actually. People work hard designing this software and they deserve to make a profit for their efforts. I left some links in the description for Mixpad and Audacity.
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Sometimes I sit around thinking to myself “What can I do better?” If you are in business for yourself you have probably read a ton of self-help books and marketing books etc. I remember asking a friend more than 10 years ago “What should I do about my business?” I felt like there was nothing I could do to improve it. He replied to me “Have you done everything you can think of to boost your business?” To me, this indicated not only that I needed to dig deeper and plan more, but also that I needed to exhaust all possibilities and take a risk. As the new year started and I watched others on social media plot out their year, I borrowed some of their ideas and formulated some of my own. I believe that being in business is a balance between professional and personal success. If you fail in one, it makes the other harder to excel in. With that, here are 19 things to Make A Successful 2019 for me that may benefit you too.
- Study- Learn as Much as you can about whatever your business or craft is. I’m a voiceover talent. I realize that every day the competition for my job becomes more fierce. Everyone with a voice is trying to enter into this arena. My advantage is that I’ve been here for 15 years. But no-one should rest on their laurels. Whether it’s more classes, conferences, or understanding the trends in my industry, I need to study regularly.
- Practice- Perfect practice makes perfect. We’ve all heard practice makes perfect. Well practicing wrong makes things worse. Understanding that right way and focusing on doing that daily is the path to success. Things like vocal training, warm-ups, cold reads, and varied reads will continue to make me a better talent.
- Communicate- Stay in contact with your customers. Use reminders and CRM. Last year I improved my sales simply by using a CRM. I had never done that before. The ability to remember who to contact and when helped me tremendously. I invested in Cloze. For me it tracks my calls to customers, reminds me to call them or email them and tells me what our last communications were. I use it keep up with the projects and auditions I’ve done. At $160 per year, it’s worth every penny.
- Track and Review- Metrics help you realize if you are going in the right direction. While Cloze helped me keep track of customers, it was important to track sales and projects. There are a ton of software out there. A few are Wavesapp (which is free), Freshbooks (which comes with tons of perks), Quickbooks, Square and Invoice2Go.
- Compete- Best yourself and others. Have fun with it. I’m the type of person who hopes we all win. But after you have tracked your metrics for this month, figure out what you did right and do it even better.
- Don’t be hard on yourself. There are factors that you can’t control. Work within the perimeter of things you can control. Beating yourself up is only gonna make you emotionally distracted.
- Advertise- Explore your advertising channels both free and paid. Marketing is everything. People have to know who you are and remember you at the exact moment they need your services. There are lots of free ways to advertise but don’t be afraid to throw some money at it. It will return.
- Find an expert– You may not know everything you need to know about business or even your business. Find someone who does. Use their services. There may be aspects of things that you are missing.
- Don’t be the smartest person in the room.- There are a lot of brilliant people out there. Share ideas. Respect others expertise and take note.
- Surround yourself with winners. It’s contagious
- Take a risk. Have a plan B,C,D,E & F for when you fail. But one of them will work. Don’t become emotionally attached to the way you win. Just focus on the result.
- Keep a routine, especially when you figure out what works.- Get up at the same time every morning. Eat breakfast or drink your coffee at the same time every day. Get dressed for work even if you work from home. This will help you with organization and make your work flow easier.
- Ask yourself (Have I done everything I can do?) Be creative
- Balance your work and personal life. Work hard and have fun harder-er
- Discuss your business with family and friends and what they do. Throughout my career, I have landed a bunch of opportunities from referrals of friends and family. When they remember what I do, they send me work if they have it or see it out in the wild. But also, I let all of them know that voiceover is everywhere, including in the companies that they presently work for. From HR training materials to internal advertisements, opportunities for my services are there.
- Keep optimal health. Eat better, sleep well, exercise. Breath.- I recently started drinking more water and it has made a big difference. When all things are working optimally, my work ethic is on point. I often wake up tired, and that affects my bottom line.
- Delegate- Don’t try to master everything at once. Allow others with expertise in things that may be helpful to you to contribute their part.
- Don’t procrastinate– The time is now. Don’t stand in your own way. This is a big problem of mine. Perhaps its an agent of fear. I don’t know. Perhaps it’s my carefree relaxed nature. But recognizing it as a fault and overcoming it will add a few digits to my account. Also, purchasing a copy of my children’s book “Dana The Procrastinator” will also add a few pennies too.
- Take a vacation- As many people who follow me on social media know, I have no problem globetrotting. It’s a lifestyle. But honestly, I would be a total failure if I didn’t do it. Travelling gives me something to look forward to outside of work. I started my year off in Dubai. I have several Latin American destinations in mind for 2019 along with my probably first trip to Africa. Reward yourself. Give yourself a mental health break.
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Your agent gives you a call and says that you booked a job that you auditioned for weeks ago. If you are anything like me, you auditioned for it and totally forgot about it, so the call is a welcome surprise. But then you are told that the recording is scheduled to take place at an outside studio. “Ok” This is different but as a pro, I’m ready to record wherever I need to.
But this still takes me for somewhat of a loop. Back in the day recording voiceover almost always took place in big time studios. Some talents were even flown in from whatever city they lived in to record in NY or LA. Some of that still exist but far less than ever before. Technology has eliminated the need for talent to come into “THE BIG STUDIO” as often. Things like ISDN, Source Connect and now new technologies like IpDTL have made giving talent direction in the comforts of their homes a lot more convenient.
And convenience is the name of the game in my voiceover business. I’ve spent a lot of money and time building a home voice over studio with great sound so that I can turn work around quickly to clients. But sometimes clients want VO talent to focus on voicing work and not engineering. That’s when the “In Person Studio Sessions” comes into play.
What To Expect?
When you get into the studio there are several people who may be there. There is the sound engineer, producer, client, copywriter and sometimes other talent. This may vary but you should understand the role of each one of these people in the process. There me be a lot of chatter around you as each person discusses the script, the sound and the voiceover read. Try to pay attention so you can get it just right for everyone in the room, although only one person will give you actual directions. It’s also good to know who everyone is because there may be an opportunity to network here.
Also there will be a script laid out for you, most likely in the booth. You should have received this script before the session but be aware that sometimes there are last minute changes that happened before you got there. Sometimes these changes occur while the client, producer and engineer confer about your read. You won’t always hear what they are saying and this can be nerve wrecking, but be careful not to let this unnerve you. A tense body is never good for your reads.
You Should Be Prepared
Preparation starts before you get to the session. You may get instructions from your agent. Be sure to follow them carefully. Know your lines if they have been given to you. Go back and listen to what you submitted for the audition. You may have recorded several takes and don’t know which one booked so get familiar with all of them and consider new reads just in case. Google the directions to the studio. Know where it is and how long it will take to get there in heavy traffic. Just like with a job interview, you want to get there 15 to 30 minutes early. And just like with a job, be familiar with the product before the interview. You won’t be asked questions about it but it will help you with the read. In the video I recorded related to this blog, I recorded for bump patrol, a product that I actually use.
Lastly remember that you are not recording voiceovers in your own studio. You are in someone else’s territory. Don’t touch anything!! Even if you are familiar with the kind of equipment in the studio, it is not yours. And also remember to dress appropriately. You want to be comfortable but not bummy. I wrote an entire blog on image that you may want to check out. This may be your chance to network for future work. When doing so, be cool about it. People do business with people they like. If they ask you for a card, have one ready, but also remind them that you work through your agent.
With everything to remember you keep in mind that this process should be fun and relaxed. If you spend most of your time in your own studio recording yourself, here is an opportunity for you to record and not have to do any editing. Use your body when needed to get the job out. Ask for feedback. You never get that at home alone. And remember that you booked the job above all other talent who auditioned so there was something they saw in you that got you in the door. Don’t Worry. Be Happy!!
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In a world of voice over for animation, Dave Fennoy is a King. I caught up with Dave while he was in town for the DragonConn convention where he was represented as one of the voices of the video game “The Walking Dead”.
You may know Dave Fennoy as the voice of Hulu. But over his 20 plus year career as a voice actor Dave has been the voice for Promos and commercials for Fox, the WB, Starz, TV One, Disney Channel, McDonalds, Corona, Lexus, AT&T, Chrysler, Starcraft 2, Thats So Raven, Spiderman and many, many more brands. But although this A list VO talent keeps a busy schedule voicing projects and traveling internationally with Comicconn conventions, I found him to be down to earth and easily accessible.
I found out that Dave would be in Atlanta by following him on Facebook. I remembered that a friend and fellow talent Kozmo Miller was a personal friend of Daves and had received coaching and mentoring from him early in Kozmos career. So I called Kozmo who reached out to Dave who was connecting flights to Atlanta in Phoenix. Dave was receptive to the idea and not only granted me the interview, but also allowed me access to his live panel discussion at DragonConn.
In the two days I spent with Dave Fennoy and I found him to be outgoing, funny and super knowledgable, all of which add value to his voicing abilities. It was easy to understand how he had booked with so many high end companies. We talked about a wide range of things, from his career, to how the average person could transition from their careers into being a voice talent. He provided valuable information on animation voice over, auditioning and the work that’s involved after booking a job.